Below, you’ll find answers to common braces questions. If you don’t see what you’re looking for, please feel free to give us a call. A friendly team member will be happy to help!
How do braces work?
Okay, time for a quick biology lesson. Your LightForce braces exert steady, gentle pressure. In response to this pressure, a natural biological process called bone remodeling occurs. The jawbone breaks down and the periodontal ligament that holds the teeth in place loosens. Your teeth are then able to move where your braces direct them.
Once your teeth arrive in their final destinations, new bone forms and the ligament tightens back up, securing them in place. While we admit all of that sounds a little scary, it’s painless. Bone remodeling actually happens in your body all of the time without you being aware of it.
How long do braces take?
Comprehensive treatment with LightForce averages between 18 and 24 months. That said, each person’s smile is unique, and treatment can be shorter or longer.
Dr. Piskai’s job, as your orthodontist, is to analyze and understand the particulars of your dentition, then plan and execute treatment to the desired result. There are never any guarantees since we’re working with nature. The total braces treatment time is carefully planned to move teeth safely, in proper sequence, and toward an ideal outcome.
Do braces hurt?
No, you should never feel severe braces pain at any point in your treatment. If you do, give our office a call at (856) 429-1900.
However, when you first get your braces put on, your teeth might feel sensitive and tender, and your mouth may be a little sore for the first week or so. Discomfort is generally pretty mild and responds well to a soft foods diet. You can also take an over-the-counter pain reliever like Tylenol if you need to.
What happens when I get my braces put on?
If you’re feeling nervous about getting your braces put on, breathe a sigh of relief, because the process is completely painless and there are no needles involved! Because we’re a South Jersey LightForce braces provider, bonding (using special adhesive to cement the brackets to your teeth) is done a little differently – and a whole lot more efficiently.
First, your custom brackets will be arranged in an indirect bonding tray in the exact places Dr. Piskai indicated on your treatment plan. The tray is like an Invisalign aligner or clear retainer and is 3D printed based on a model of your teeth.
After we clean and prep the surface of your teeth, we’ll place the indirect bonding tray in your mouth and the brackets will adhere to your teeth. We’ll let the adhesive cure and remove the tray. This technique allows us to place multiple brackets at once instead of one at a time.
Finally, Dr. Piskai will thread your archwires through your brackets and secure them in place with ligatures, or tiny elastics. You’ll get all of the information you need about caring for your LightForce braces, and you’ll leave our office one step closer to your brand new smile.
What happens when I get my braces removed?
Getting your braces taken off is just as painless as getting them put on. Dr. Piskai will use special tools to remove your wires and gently detach your brackets. She’ll get rid of any leftover adhesive and polish your teeth.
Of course, we’ll snap some pics of your awesome smile and celebrate the end of your treatment. To ensure your smile stays the same as it is on the day of your big reveal, we’ll give you a set of clear plastic retainers (and a complimentary backup set). Wearing your retainers is the only way to maintain your results for life.
LightForce braces look cool, but how else are they better?
With our own LightForce cases, we’ve seen excellent clinical results and patient satisfaction.
Our peers (other forward-thinking orthodontists) across the country who have completed many start-to-finish LightForce cases have been consistently observing faster treatment times, less frequent and shorter office visits, and beautifully finished smiles.
How often do I need to brush my teeth with braces?
LightForce brackets are easier to clean than conventional brackets, because they fit the contours of each tooth perfectly. That said, any time you have brackets and wires in your mouth, food and plaque have places to hide.
In order to keep your teeth and braces clean and prevent tooth decay, brush your teeth after meals and snacks. This will add up to at least three to four times a day. Also be sure to floss once daily.
Do I still need to visit my general dentist during braces treatment?
Yup. While, yes, orthodontists like Dr. Piskai go to dental school, they’re specialists. This means they focus on one area of dentistry: aligning the teeth and jaw. Your general dentist, on the other hand, is the professional to turn to for your overall oral health needs.
Your teeth move most efficiently in a healthy mouth and getting gum disease or cavities with braces can interrupt and potentially prolong your treatment. So, keeping up with routine dental care is more important than ever during your orthodontic treatment.
We recommend continuing to visit your general dentist once every six months, or more often if they recommend, for a dental exam and cleaning. Routine dental care can prevent many issues or, at the very least, ensure problems are caught early while they’re easy to treat.
How much do braces cost?
To determine your braces cost, we recommend coming in for a consultation. At this visit, Dr. Piskai will assess your individual treatment needs, and we’ll get an insurance pre-qualification for your specific situation. If you have insurance coverage, it will reduce the amount you’re responsible for.
If you don’t have insurance, that’s okay too! We try to be accommodating as possible in working with your out-of-pocket portion. Our fee is all-inclusive (no surprise charges here!). And we offer interest-free, in-house financing, so you can break up the cost of your treatment into affordable monthly payments without having to deal with any third parties.
We accept cash, all major credit cards, and even bitcoin for deposits and installments. And, if you have multiple family members in treatment, we also offer family discounts.
Do LightForce braces cost more than traditional metal braces?
Not at our practice. Our philosophy is to provide all of our patients with the very best treatment options, so we never upcharge, and our fee for comprehensive treatment is all-inclusive (including your clear retainers once you finish treatment).
Many patients are able to pick between LightForce and Invisalign, which are the same price, by the way. The only time this isn’t possible is when Dr. Piskai recommends one over the other due to the needs of that particular patient.