Braces are essentially a rite of passage for teenagers, but unfortunately they have gotten a bad rep. This is because there are many myths or exaggerations about braces that may be confusing or concerning to prospective braces patients. When getting braces, the unknowns can be a little overwhelming, so I am here to explain and simplify some of the most common braces misconceptions.
Common Braces Myths:
Myth 1: Braces Hurt All the Time
This is one of the most common questions I get: “Will it hurt?” While it is true, that braces may initially cause some mild discomfort after you first get them on and occasionally after you get your braces adjusted (commonly called “tightened”), but this is manageable and gets better after a few days. Most patients use over the counter pain medication before or after getting braces on to reduce any aches and pains they may have. The day you get your braces on is also a great excuse to eat some of your favorite soft foods – my personal favorite is ICE CREAM.
Myth 2: Braces Take Forever to Work
Depending on the severity of your teeth and bite, braces may take some time to work. However, most patients start seeing some changes within the first few weeks. This is always so exciting. I love when patients come in excited about the changes they’ve noticed. Some patients only need braces for a few months, other patients may need braces for a few years. Either way, it is worth it to perfect your smile and establish a healthy bite.
Myth 3: Braces Are Too Expensive
Your smile will follow you everywhere – on your first date, to your first job interview, and through all of the exciting moments of your life. Braces are a long-term investment in your smile. Because we know how important your smile is and we want you to be able to afford them for you or your child, we offer interest free payment plans and flexible payment options to help make this happen. Many dental insurance plans cover a portion of braces as well and we help guide you through that process.
Myth 4: Braces Damage Teeth
Braces do not damage your teeth. They are carefully designed and placed to keep everything healthy. However, poor oral hygiene and brushing habits with or without braces can cause damage to your teeth. This is why we spend so much time explaining how to properly brush and floss your teeth with braces.
Myth 5: Braces are Only for Teenagers
Teenagers are commonly seen with braces so that we can utilize their growth spurts to adjust their bite, but patients of all ages get braces for various reasons. The American Association of Orthodontists recommends that children seen an orthodontist by age 7 to evaluate their growth patterns and determine the best treatment plan. We also have adults getting braces! It’s never too late to improve your smile.
Myth 6: Braces Need Constant Adjustment
A very common misconception is that braces patients need to come in for appointments every month. We use modern technology, so that this is no longer the case. Most of our braces patients are seen every 8 weeks, depending on what needs to be done. We do as much work as we can at each appointment to ensure your treatment is completed as quickly as possible and to minimize extra appointments.
If you have any other questions, please let me know. I am always happy to answer questions.
Have a great day,
Kirsten Frazier DMD, MS