Teeth that are misaligned (crooked) can impact your ability to chew properly and may lead to your tooth enamel wearing prematurely. That can open you up to dental problems down the road. Crooked teeth also detract from your smile and can lead you to smile less or not at all. Get the straight teeth you’ve always wanted for you and your family with orthodontic options from Dr. Craig Ellsworth of Family Dental of Spokane Valley, WA.
Earlier Is Better
Catching orthodontic problems early can avoid a lot of problems later on. That idea is known as “interceptive dentistry,” and Dr. Ellsworth is firm believer. From your child’s earliest checkup through adolescence, detecting problems in the bite or the smile can be dealt with before they become severe.
But whether a family member is 8 or 80, or somewhere in between, orthodontics can straighten teeth to give the person a happier life.
The Old And The New
The traditional approach to moving teeth involves metal braces. These are pads (brackets) that are affixed to the fronts of the teeth in most cases. Those brackets are connected by metal wires that are tightened periodically to keep moving teeth into position.
Metal braces do a great job of moving teeth. In complicated cases, they may be the only option, and Dr. Ellsworth does offer them. But that option comes with some drawbacks: embarrassment over one’s appearance (“brace face”), difficulty in cleaning the teeth around the wires and brackets, and even cuts to the inside of the mouth from the metal. It’s common to feel pain when the wires are tightened and that tightening requires fairly frequent trips to the dentist.
The more recent options in straightening teeth are much more comfortable and much less embarrassing. In fact, once the clear plastic aligners are in place, they’re hard to detect! At our Spokane Valley, WA dental office, Dr. Ellsworth offers:
Invisalign: Invisalign basically got clear dental aligners on the map, and they remain the best-known option. Invisalign aligners are made from smooth, clear plastic that won’t irritate your mouth. The completely customized aligners fit so closely over your teeth that you can even sleep in them – and you should, for best results. You remove the aligners to eat and to brush and floss your teeth as you always do. After two to three weeks – Dr. Ellsworth will determine your precise schedule – you switch to the next aligner in your series to keep moving your teeth into position.
ClearCorrect: ClearCorrect aligners are very similar to Invisalign in appearance and function. You switch to the next aligner on a predetermined schedule. As with Invisalign, wear the aligners for about 22 hours every day for best results.
Six Month Smiles: These clear braces are very similar to metal braces but are far less noticeable and can deliver results much faster in some cases – 6 months versus 2 years, for instance.
The only way to know which orthodontic option is best for you is to schedule a consultation with with Dr. Ellsworth. He’ll discuss your goals for your teeth and perform a thorough examination including digital images to determine which solution is right for you.
Call 509-850-3217 or use our online form to make an appointment with Family Dental of Spokane Valley, WA.