Are you or your child looking for an orthodontist in Houston due to having unsightly gaps or misaligned teeth? At Antoine Dental Center, we provide orthodontic treatment to patients including adolescents, teens, and even adults! Orthodontic treatment is designed to eliminate misalignments and create a comfortable bite so that you can more easily bite, chew and speak. However, orthodontic treatments can also be used to create an attractive smile, which can improve your confidence.
Most children should have a complete orthodontic evaluation by the time they are seven. This gives our orthodontics specialist in Houston an opportunity to make recommendations that can prevent future dental problems. However, age does not need to be a barrier to effective treatment options, and we welcome patients of all ages to our office. For all of your orthodontic needs, visit us at Antoine Dental Center.
Don’t continue living with misaligned and crooked teeth, contact our dental office in Houston today to schedule an appointment for our orthodontic treatment. We look forward to helping you achieve the smile you’ve always dreamed of! (713) 691-8880.
Invisalign, the most popular type of clear braces aligners, has a reputation for giving patients straight teeth in a discreet way. However, many patients do not initially realize that this treatment also comes with several other advantages. Here is a look at what Invisalign does for patients, who can get Invisalign, and how our Houston Invisalign dentist provides this treatment.
Incognito braces are a newer type of lingual orthodontics developed by technology leader 3M. As its name suggests, Incognito lets patients have their teeth straightened without anyone being able to tell. The patented brackets are not visible when used in the back of the top teeth, and other people are unlikely to see Incognito brackets behind the bottom teeth.
Self-ligating braces offer improvements over metal braces, including a more traditional treatment, in terms of appearance, comfort, and treatment time. As with metal braces, candidacy requirements for self-ligating braces are also broad enough that most patients are eligible. Understanding what self-ligating braces offer and how they work can help patients better decide if this treatment sounds good for them.
Propel Orthodontics is the maker of the Propel System, which involves using a patented instrument to reduce orthodontic treatment time by fifty to sixty percent or more. Like Wilckodontics, Propel works by modifying the bone around the teeth so that the braces can move the teeth more easily. Unlike Wilckodontics, however, Propel achieves this without the need for surgery.
Frequently Asked Questions About Braces
Many people believe braces are only a cosmetic fix, a way to improve the look of your smile. Braces are about more than just smiles, however (though smiles are important!) They are also about improving and maintaining your oral health. Misaligned or crowded teeth, uneven teeth spacing, and overbite and underbite problems can all contribute to long-term dental issues, including tooth decay and periodontal disease. Straight teeth don’t just look good—they’re also better and healthier for your long-term health.
Here at Antoine Dental Center, our Houston-based orthodontists fuse together your desire to perfect your smile and the need to take care of your oral health. We start off all potential orthodontic patients with a consultation to determine our best course of action, so that our treatment helps you reach your goals.
How do I know if I need braces?
Sometimes you’ll be able to see if there are major dental problems requiring orthodontic treatment, like noticeable overcrowding or severely misaligned teeth. Lots of orthodontic cases aren’t immediately noticeable to the untrained eye, however. That’s where regular dental check-ups come in. In the process of a routine maintenance appointment, like teeth-cleaning, a dentist will be able to spot potential orthodontic problems and refer you to an orthodontist before they worsen. At Antoine Dental, our team includes some of the best orthodontists in Houston, so you won’t even have to leave the building!
Here are some of the reasons you might end up needing braces:
- Overcrowded teeth
- Unevenly spaced or misaligned teeth
- An overbite or underbite
- Other dental and facial irregularities caused by orthodontic-related dental problems
Why do I need to straighten my teeth?
Straightening your teeth is important for many reasons. If you do not straighten your teeth, you will be at a higher risk for developing a host of oral health problems, including: cavities or tooth decay, gum disease, tooth loss, jaw problems, enamel loss, difficulty in chewing properly, and difficulty in speaking clearly. Straighter teeth can also help you feel more confident in your appearance with a more confident smile.
Why are my teeth not straight?
There are many reasons why your teeth may not be straight. The most common reasons are hereditary traits as well as developmental influences. You can inherit problems such as crowded teeth, crooked teeth and even jaw irregularities. Certain actions, such as excessive thumb sucking or losing baby teeth prematurely, can cause crowding and crookedness.
What should I consider when choosing an orthodontist?
Choosing an orthodontist is a decision you should take very seriously. You want your teeth to be in good hands! Here are some factors we recommend you consider before committing to an orthodontist:
1. Is the orthodontist fully accredited?
Orthodontists require extra training on top of a regular dentistry education. Don’t be afraid to ask!
2. Are their hours flexible?
Braces will require regular check-ups, so you may find yourself going to the dentist more often than usual. At Antoine Dental Center, we know Houston residents have very busy schedules. That’s why we’re proud to offer a flexible schedule, so that your oral health care doesn’t have to conflict with your work commitments or your child’s schooling.
3. Is their office location compatible with your schedule?
Remember that as you go to regular check-ups, you’ll be heading to our office fairly frequently. That’s one of the reasons we chose to locate our practice in the heart of Houston—easy access for most of our patients!
4. Does the office offer a variety of orthodontic treatments?
Make sure you can make a choice among different orthodontic options! There are so many different types of treatments, and we promise one of them will be perfect for you. Antoine Dental Center offers a huge range of orthodontic treatments and we’re very experienced in working with every individual patient to make sure they’re comfortable with and happy about the braces they choose.
5. How much does it cost to get braces in Houston, Tx?
The cost of braces treatment depends on the type of braces you choose and how long you have them. Many insurance plans also contribute to orthodontic treatment. We’d be happy to help you navigate your own insurance plan’s orthodontic policies. Antoine Dental Center also offers payment plans with low monthly payments, as well as 0% interest for those who qualify. It’s important to us that our patients’ ability to take care of their oral health and attain the smile they want isn’t dependent on their finances!
How much will braces cost at Antoine Dental Center?
The cost for getting braces will depend on a number of factors, including the type of braces you get, the complexity of the procedure, how much your insurance will cover, and so on.
The average cost for the most common types of braces are:
- Metal (Traditional) Braces: $3,000—7,000
- Ceramic Braces: $4,000—8,000
- Invisalign© Aligners: $4,000—7,400
- Lingual Braces: $8,000—10,000
Your insurance may or may not cover some or potentially even all of your procedures, so you should consult with your dental health team and insurance to find out more. We also offer low monthly payments for braces. Call your orthodontist in Houston at 713-691-8880 to learn more.
How long will I wear braces?
The average length of time that most people need to wear their braces is 24 months, though it can range from 18 months to 30 months. The length of time you need to wear braces will depend on how severe the problem is, your age and current oral health, how well the treatment plan works for you, and how well you stick to the rules/limitations of the plan.
How should I take care of my braces?
It’s essential that you take care of your braces properly in order to keep them from becoming damaged and to help ensure that they work as effectively as possible for you. You will need to brush, floss and rinse with an antiseptic rinse after every meal. You will also need to avoid any foods which you shouldn’t eat with braces, including: hard foods, crunchy foods, sticky foods and foods you have to bite into such as whole apples.
Am I too old for braces?
There is technically no such thing as being “too old” for braces. In general, dentists recommend that children between the ages of 10 and 14 receive braces as this is the stage when their permanent teeth are erupting, so they can be more easily guided into the correct straight shape. However, teenagers and adults can still benefit from braces treatments. Call your orthodontist in Houston at 713-691-8880 to schedule an appointment.
Can I get braces as an adult?
Absolutely! In fact, adults make up about 25% of orthodontic patients. Lots of adults are self-conscious about their dental imperfections and want to improve the look of their smile, whether for professional or personal reasons. For others, getting orthodontic treatment is the best way to allay future health problems. For most of our patients, it’s a combination of both. If the appearance of braces is a concern for you, read on to see the many options available to minimize the look of orthodontic treatment. And remember, braces are temporary, but your new and improved smile is forever. If you wish to learn more information over our braces for adults program, please feel free to call your orthodontist in Houston at 713-691-8880.
What Are Phrase I and Phase II treatments?
Dentists refer to patients who receive early braces treatment (between the ages of 7 and 10) as receiving “Phase I” treatment. Phase I treatment is an early intervention treatment which is typically done in patients who will likely need to receive braces treatment in the future. Phase I helps correct certain structural problems that will make Phase II—the braces phase—more effective. Certain structural problems that can be resolved in Phase I include correcting severe underbites/overbites, narrow jaws, and so on. Another aspect of early intervention treatment is addressing habits such as sucking thumbs, speech problems, and so on, which can all cause a greater need for braces later on.
In between Phase I and Phase II, patients will typically wear some type of retainer in order to prevent their progress from backsliding.
Phase II treatment is braces or as it is sometimes called, “active treatment.”
Are braces today as bad as they used to be?
When most people think of braces, their minds go to the cumbersome, heavy metal braces of their childhood—but braces have come a long way since then. Today, braces are much less painful, much less noticeable, and a lot more effective in a shorter amount of time. You can even get clear braces or look for options such as Invisalign.
When should teens see an orthodontist?
It is recommended by the AAO (American Association of Orthodontists) that children are seen by an orthodontist by 7 years old. At the age of 7, children already have a combination of baby and adult teeth, and orthodontists will be able to spot many potential problems early with an early consultation.
Why is early intervention important for orthodontic treatment?
In general, it is better to begin solving orthodontic problems when they are small rather than waiting for treatment until those problems have become more significant. Early intervention can help make treatment for problems such as crowded teeth easier—and even less expensive—down the road.
Do children want braces—or just the parents?
It is typically the parents who are most concerned about the orthodontic state of their children’s mouths. However, as children get older, they become more receptive to orthodontic treatment as a way to improve their self-esteem.
What are the most common questions about braces asked by teens?
Teen patients will typically be interested in the following concerns:
- How long will I have to wear braces?
- What can I eat—and not eat?
- Will it hurt?
Teens want to know how braces will impact their lives and what they can expect from getting braces. It is important for teens to understand the importance of proper treatment, including how long it may take, so that they will be compliant with their treatment regimen.
Can teens opt out for more aesthetically pleasing braces?
Yes. There are options for colored brackets which are more pleasant to look at than standard brackets; and depending on their particular case, teen patients may also be eligible for clear options such as Invisalign.
I’m worried about my appearance while wearing braces. What can I do?
We completely understand that some of our patients don’t like the look of braces. If you are concerned about your appearance during orthodontic treatment, you’re not alone—many of our patients, especially adults, ask how we can minimize the visibility of ongoing treatment. If aesthetic concerns are particularly important to you, we have a range of options less visible than traditional metal braces.
What orthodontic options does Antoine Dental Center offer?
Traditional braces: This treatment is what most people envision when they hear the word “braces.” It uses brackets, wires, and elastic bands, affixed to the front of your teeth, to slowly move your teeth into their proper position. You’ll come in to our Houston office for appointments every 4 to 6 weeks, so we can adjust them as needed. Even with traditional braces, you have options. Kids often enjoy picking out their favorite colors for their braces; you can even have rainbow braces! Adults have the option of choosing clear braces if they prefer.
Invisalign: If minimizing the visibility of your orthodontic treatment is a priority for you, Invisalign may be the way to go. If you’re a good candidate for this treatment, Antoine Dental Center’s orthodontist team will fit you for custom-made, clear plastic aligners, while you’ll switch out for a new set every two weeks. Like braces, Invisalign shifts your teeth into their proper alignment over time, though the aligners can be removed while you eat or brush your teeth and they tend to finish treatment in a shorter amount of time.
Self-ligating braces: These braces eliminate the bands used in traditional braces and replace them with a slide mechanism. Self-ligating braces often offer the possibility of a faster treatment than traditional braces because your teeth can move into their proper position more freely. Their brackets are also less visible than those used in traditional braces.
Clarity braces: These are a good option for patients who place a high premium on discreet orthodontic treatment. Clarity braces use tooth-colored materials for the brackets, ensuring that your braces are less noticeable than traditional braces.
Lingual braces: Another name for lingual braces is “invisible braces,” so you can guess where we’re going with this one! If you are eligible for and choose this treatment option, our Antoine Dental Center orthodontist team will affix your braces on the inside of your teeth, making them unnoticeable from the outside. We will customize them to fit your teeth and, as with other orthodontic treatments, we’ll need to check on them regularly to adjust them as needed.
That’s a lot of options! How do I know which braces option is right for me?
That’s what we’re here for! Come in for an initial consultation to find out which treatment might work best for you. We’ll work with you to get the smile you’ve always dreamed of!
Are there any alternatives to braces?
At this time, no, there aren’t really any alternatives to braces—but there are some alternatives to the traditional metal braces that many people assume is the only type of braces option available out there today. However, there are several braces options which are not as visibly unappealing, including braces made with clear brackets and wires and options such as Invisalign.
Do braces hurt?
Braces shouldn’t cause any serious pain. If anything, patients describe feelings of discomfort, especially after they are first affixed to your teeth. The discomfort might arise in the three days after initial placement, as your mouth adjusts to the presence of braces. Some patients describe a feeling of pressure. This discomfort is temporary though! Most patients report all discomfort being over by day five. You can ask your orthodontist about ways to minimize the adjustment period; you may want to talk to your orthodontist about taking over-the-counter medication during this time.
Keep in mind that chewing might be a bit difficult in the days following, since you’re getting used to the feeling. Antoine Dental recommends sticking to softer foods at first. In fact, we recommend you head over to Houston’s Honeychild’s Sweet Cream or Fat Cat Creamery after your first appointment: to treat yourself and to soothe any lingering discomfort from the procedure.
How do I take care of my teeth while I am wearing braces?
Flossing is important whether or not you’re receiving orthodontic treatment. Braces present an additional reason for taking care while flossing, because they’re another surface that food and other debris can get stuck in. Your orthodontist will help you develop a flossing routine that will keep your braces clean and healthy. We may give you some appliances, like interdental brushes and floss threaders, to help you floss with braces.
Taking care to brush your braces thoroughly is also central to effective treatment. Soft-bristles toothbrushes are the way to go when you’re receiving orthodontic care. At Antoine Dental, we’ll show you the best methods and materials for learning how to brush your teeth with braces.
Mouthguards are important for all athletes, but even more necessary for players who wear braces. They’ll keep your teeth safe if you get into a sports accident, including falling or colliding with another player, and prevent your braces from causing additional damage.
To spare yourself headaches down the road, you might want to consider making small adjustments to your diet while you wear braces. It can be hard to get sticky or chewy food out of your braces, so you may find that avoiding gummies, sticky and hard candy, gum, pretzels, popcorn, and nuts makes your day-to-day a bit easier.
What do I do if a bracket or wire breaks?
Keep calm! This is a fairly common situation for braces-wearers and can happen if you hurt your mouth, eat the wrong food, or put too much pressure on your teeth while you brush them. If your wire or bracket breaks, you’ll need to come into our Houston office so our team at Antoine Dental Center can fix it. We will schedule you to come in for a visit—the timing will depend on how urgent the break is (that is, how uncomfortable it is). If a wire or bracket ever breaks or falls, Please call your Orthodontist in Houston.
What’s the process for taking braces off when treatment is complete?
Once we determine your braces treatment is complete, it’s time to take them off! The process is pain-free and straightforward. But remember, your orthodontic treatment isn’t over yet. Your orthodontist will fit you for a retainer, which you will be able to remove or it will be affixed in a way not visible to anyone else. The visible part of your orthodontic treatment is over!
Many adult braces patients like to get their newly straightened teeth whitened after we remove your braces. Antoine Dental Center offers a variety of options for celebratory teeth whitening—we can do an in-office procedure, which whitens your teeth quickly and considerably, or send you home with a take-home tray for at-home treatment.
You’ll leave your final orthodontic appointment thrilled with your bright smile and ready to show off those newly straight teeth! If you’re ready to start your orthodontic treatment, please call your orthodontist in Houston at 713-691-8880.