Orthodontic FAQs in Frederick, MD


Frequently Asked Questions about Orthodontics at Bloom & Reddy Orthodontics

What is orthodontics?

Orthodontics is the study and movement of teeth. It focuses on the diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of dental and facial abnormalities in both children and adults.

What is an orthodontist?

Orthodontists complete an additional two to three years of advanced training completely geared towards the study, practice, and completion of orthodontic treatment for kids, teens, adults, and surgery cases. As orthodontic specialists, Dr. Reddy and Dr. Bloom are able to straighten teeth, correct misaligned jaw structure, and improve the function of your smile.

What should I look for when choosing an orthodontist?

Find an office or orthodontist that is friendly, communicates well, is readily available for questions or emergencies, makes you feel welcome, and treats you kindly. Patient relations are as critical as the actual science of moving teeth, so when you have both, you win!

Bloom & Reddy Orthodontics, we take pride in making our patients happy by giving them the smile that they have always wanted. We provide support, encouragement, and education, and we’ll celebrate with you when your smile is complete! Our team is fun, outgoing, warm hearted, and hope to make each visit special.

What’s the best age to visit the orthodontist?

If you want to improve the look and feel of your smile, then any age can be a great time to see the orthodontist. The American Association of Orthodontists recommends that children first visit an orthodontist around the age of seven. Oftentimes, at this age, we can guide growth of the facial bones in the event that there is some imbalance to reduce the amount of orthodontic treatment in later years.

Orthodontic treatment is not exclusive to children and teens. About one in every five orthodontic patients at our Frederick orthodontic office is over the age of 21. Whether you’re considering treatment for yourself or for a child, any time is a good time to visit the orthodontist.

What are braces?

Braces are used by Drs. Bloom and Reddy to help you improve the look and feel of your smile. There are several different types of braces to choose from at our Frederick, MD orthodontic office, including:

  • Traditional metal braces
  • Clear braces
  • In-Ovation® self-ligating braces for easier tooth movement and less discomfort
  • Invisalign® clear aligners for a clear, removable alternative to traditional braces

If I get braces, how long do I have to wear them?

The amount of time spent in braces will vary, depending on the individual patient, because every smile responds differently to treatment. Treatment times can take anywhere from six to 30 months, but most standard treatments take about 22 months.

Do braces hurt?

Braces do not often hurt, though you may feel a small amount of discomfort for a couple days as your teeth, gums, cheeks, and mouth get used to your new braces.

Do I need to brush my teeth more often if I have braces?

With braces, you should brush your teeth at least three times a day to keep your teeth, gums, and mouth healthy and clean. Brushing regularly will help remove any food that may be caught between the braces.

You should also floss daily to get between your braces where your brush isn't able to reach. We can show you how to brush and floss properly once your braces are placed.

If I have braces, do I still need dental checkups every six months?

Yes! In fact, it’s even more essential that patients receiving orthodontic treatment visit their dentist regularly. With braces, food may be caught in places your toothbrush can’t reach. This causes bacteria to build up that can lead to cavities, gingivitis, and gum disease. We will work closely with your dentist to make sure your teeth stay clean and healthy while you’re wearing braces.

Will my braces interfere with my school activities like sports, playing an instrument, or singing?

Playing an instrument or a contact sport may require some adjustment when you first get your braces, but wearing braces will not stop you from participating in any of your school activities. If you play a contact sport, it is recommended that you wear a mouthguard to protect your braces or appliance.

What’s involved in my first visit?

Your first visit to Bloom & Reddy Orthodontics is a “meet and greet” to say hello to your doctor and for us to assess the initial concerns that you may have. In some cases, children may not be ready for orthodontic treatment. If this is the case, we will monitor their growth on a recall basis until the time is right.

If you are ready for treatment, we will discuss your options, types of braces, and if we need help from your dentist along the way. Particularly in adult cases, we communicate closely with your general dentist to ensure that we are working together for a common goal and providing you with a treatment plan that takes into account other dental needs that need to be met.

How can I take care of my teeth if I’m wearing braces or a retainer?

  • ALWAYS remember to brush your teeth after every meal and floss at least once a day.
  • Make sure to use toothpaste that contains fluoride, and ask our office or your family dentist if you need a fluoride rinse. This will help prevent cavities!
  • If you take out your retainer to eat, make sure you brush your teeth, floss, and remember to keep the retainer safe in its container so it does not get lost or broken.
  • Keep your retainer clean, too, by brushing it gently with a toothbrush and toothpaste. You may also soak it in denture cleaner as instructed by our office. Do not put your retainer in boiling water or in the dishwasher.
  • During your treatment, try to avoid foods with a lot of sugar, which increases the amount of bacteria that grows in your mouth, and can cause more plaque and potential cavities.
  • Avoid sticky and chewy foods (caramel, chewing gum, gummy bears), hard foods (hard candy, nuts, ice cubes), or any foods that could possibly get stuck in your braces (corn on the cob, soft bagels, ribs, taffy, etc.).
  • Be sure to schedule your routine checkups with your family dentist. It is recommended that you continue to visit the dentist every six months.

How do I schedule my next appointment?

Simply call our Frederick orthodontic office! Our front desk staff will be happy to schedule your next appointment at your convenience. If you are a new patient or have been referred to our practice, please let us know and we will provide you with all the information you need.

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