​Frequently Asked Questions


Asked Questions

What is orthodontics?

Orthodontics is a specialist area of dentistry that uses braces to improve the overall appearance by the straightening of teeth. Orthodontic treatment aims to correct the jaw position and function of crooked or badly positioned teeth. Treatment is carried out by an Orthodontist.

What is a specialist in orthodontics?

A specialist in Orthodontics has completed at least three years of postgraduate study in Orthodontics after graduating as a dentist and obtained further training from the Royal College of Surgeons. His or her name will appear on the Specialist list of the General Dental Council. This additional training enables them to develop the skills needed to treat the most complex orthodontic problems as well as enhancing their understanding of the overall orthodontic treatment.

When can a child begin orthodontics?

Occasionally early treatment may begin at around 7-8 years of age for problems involving the positions of the jaws. Ideally a child should see an orthodontist around 9 to 10 years to check on the development of the permanent teeth and sometime at this time orthodontics is started if deemed a necessity. The most common time to start orthodontic treatment is around 11 to 14 years of age when most of the permanent teeth have come into the mouth.

Can adults have orthodontic treatment?

There is no age limit for orthodontics – it can be done at any time of life. You can never be too old to have treatment.

Why do I need orthodontic treatment?

As well as enabling you to have 'The Perfect Smile' Orthodontic treatment can also improve the function and health of your teeth and, in some cases, improve associated structures such as jaws and joints.

Will I need to have teeth extracted?

Sometimes, removing teeth is required to achieve the best orthodontic result, particularly in the case of overcrowded teeth. However, orthodontic technology is always advancing and in many cases extractions are now not always necessary.

What is orthognathic surgery?

Orthognathic surgery is an operation on the jaws to correct their position and improve the alignment of the upper and lower teeth.

Do I need a referral from the dentist to book an orthodontic appointment?

No it is not necessary to have a referral from your dentist; anyone can contact the practice directly if you have concerns about the appearance of your teeth.

How do I schedule an appointment?

If you need to book an orthodontic appointment for yourself or your child, please click here to find and contact your nearest or preffered practice. One of the team will help to find a date and time that suits you.

How much do braces cost?

This depends on the type of braces used, and the severity of the case. Our Treatment Co-ordinators are able to give you a guide only, a full quotation will be given to you at your consultation appointment once the Orthodontist has clinically assessed your teeth.

Do you have financial payment plans?

Yes, we have a variety of financial options available to suit your budget including a 0% in-house payment plan with monthly interest free payments by standing order. All available options will be discussed with our Treatment Co-ordinators at your consultation.

How long does orthodontic treatment take?

The duration of treatment depends on the severity of the individual case. Treatment usually takes around 12-18 months, however simpler orthodontic cases can be completed in less than a year.

What types of braces are there?

We offer a variety of appliances suitable for each individual case. Fixed braces are attached to the teeth can be placed either on the front or the back of the teeth. Depending on the type of appliance, the brace can be made of stainless steel, ceramic (tooth coloured) and gold. Functional appliances are used in children to correct positions of the jaws are made of acrylic. Invisalign are clear removable aligners that gradually move your teeth until they have straightened into their final position.

Can braces be totally invisible?

Yes, lingual braces (Incognito) are made of gold and are attached to the back of the tooth surface and cannot be seen. Clear braces (Invisalign) are sets of virtually invisible aligners that fit onto your teeth; there are no wires or brackets involved.

What is a functional appliance?

A functional appliance is a type of brace used in children and adolescents to correct the position of the jaw while a child is growing. This is usually followed at a later date with a course of fixed appliance treatment.

What is Lingual orthodontics?

Lingual braces (Incognito)are made from gold and attached onto the back surface of the teeth making them totally invisible.

What is Invisalign?

Invisalign is an Orthodontic treatment consisting of removable clear aligners that are digitally created specifically for the individual. Each set of virtually invisible aligners gradually move the teeth into the desired final position.

How often will my orthodontic appointments be?

We recommend that the majority of patients see their Orthodontist every 4-6 weeks, however appointments are scheduled according to the individual’s needs, so can be more or less frequent as necessary.

What should I do if I require an emergency appointment?

If, for example, your braces are causing discomfort or something breaks, please call your practice for advice as soon as you can. Less minor issues can usually be addressed over the telephone, however, in some cases, it may be necessary to schedule an appointment at your earliest convenience.

Do I still need to visit the dentist while wearing braces?

Yes, it is very important to continue to visit the dentist and hygienist regularly whilst wearing braces. The success of your Orthodontic treatment may also be effected if good oral hygiene maintenance is not maintained.

How often should I brush my teeth while wearing braces?

It is recommended that you brush your teeth at least twice a day while wearing braces. And it may be advisable to gargle (with water, mouthwash) after meals, or snacks to dislodge any lingering food. You can find out more information about keeping your teeth clean in our aftercare booklet.

Are there any foods I can’t eat while wearing braces?

If you are wearing fixed braces, you should avoid hard food, such as raw vegetables, hard sweets, nuts, crusty bread and sticky foods such as chewing gum and toffee, as these can loosen the brace and damage the wires. If you wear removable aligners, such as Invisalign, there are no dietary restrictions as they can be removed before eating and drinking. Tea, coffee, red wine and curry can stain aligners and elastics (on fixed appliances). If you remove your aligners for eating or drinking, remember to put them straight back in!

Can I still play sports?

Yes you can continue to play sports as normal. We recommend using an orthodontic mouthguard when playing contact sports to protect the mouth from injury.

What is a retainer?

A retainer can be removable or fitted to the back of the teeth in order to keep the teeth in their final position after orthodontic treatment has been completed and the brace has been removed.