Frequently Asked Questions

  1. Is it required that my family dentist schedule my appointment with the orthodontist?
  2. At what age should I schedule an appointment for an orthodontic screening?
  3. Will my teeth straighten out as they grow?
  4. How do I schedule an appointment for an initial exam?
  5. What will happen at the initial examination appointment?
  6. What will I learn from the initial examination?
  7. Will I need to have teeth extracted for braces?
  8. How long will it take to complete treatment?
  9. How much will braces cost? Are financing options available? How does my insurance work?
  10. How often will I have appointments?
  11. Can I schedule all of my appointments after school?
  12. Can I drop my child off for an appointment?
  13. Do braces hurt?
  14. Can I return to school the day I receive my braces?
  15. Do you give shots?
  16. Do you use recycled braces?
  17. Can I still play sports?
  18. Do I need to see my family dentist while in braces?
  19. Are there foods I cannot eat while I have braces?
  20. How often should I brush my teeth while in braces?
  21. What is an emergency appointment? How are those handled?
  22. Can orthodontic correction occur while a child has baby teeth?
  23. What is Phase One (early) Treatment?
  24. Will my child need full braces if he/she has Phase One treatment?
  25. Will my child need an expander?
  26. Is it too late to have braces if I am already an adult?
  27. Can I wear braces even though I have crowns and missing teeth?
  28. Why should you choose an orthodontic specialist?
  29. Does my insurance cover treatment?
  30. Do I see the doctor at every appointment?
  31. Will braces interfere with playing musical instruments?
  32. Why does orthodontic treatment time sometimes last longer than anticipated?
  33. What is patient cooperation and how important is it during orthodontic treatment?

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  1. Is it required that my family dentist schedule my appointment with the orthodontist?
    No, it is not. Many of our patients are referred by their family dentist, yet many other patients take the initiative to schedule an examination themselves.
  2. At what age should I schedule an appointment for an orthodontic screening?
    The American Association of Orthodontists recommends an orthodontic screening at age 7. By this age, several permanent teeth in most children have erupted, allowing us to effectively evaluate your orthodontic condition. This will allow the child’s growth and changing dentition to be monitored by Dr. Pavlo, as well as identify and intercept potential problems early. However, you are never too old to start orthodontic treatment, and people of all ages can reap the benefits. Learn more about Orthodontics for Children>
  3. Will my teeth straighten out as they grow?
    No, they will not. The space available for the front teeth does not increase as you grow. In most people, after the permanent molars erupt, the space available for the front teeth decreases with age.
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  5. How do I schedule an appointment for an initial exam?
    If you or your child can potentially benefit from orthodontic treatment, simply call our office, send us an e-mail or fill out or appointment request form online. We will be happy to schedule an appointment for you. When you call to schedule your appointment, one of our friendly front office team members will request some basic information from you.
  6. What will happen at the initial examination appointment?
    Upon arriving, each patient and parent will be seen by our treatment coordinator and Dr. Pavlo who will acclimate you to our office and prepare for the initial exam. We will take the necessary digital photographs and X-rays to allow us to make a proper diagnosis. Dr. Pavlo will then complete a comprehensive, thorough exam. To read more about what to expect at your first visit, click here>
  7. What will I learn from the initial examination?
    There are five essential questions that we will cover during the initial examination:

    · Is there an orthodontic problem, and if so, what is it?
    · What must be done to correct the problem?
    · Will any teeth need to be removed?
    · How long will the treatment take to complete?
    · How much will the treatment cost?

  8. Will I need to have teeth extracted for braces?
    Removing teeth (either baby or permanent) is sometimes required to achieve the best orthodontic result. Straight teeth and a balanced facial profile are the goal of orthodontics. However, because new technology has provided advanced orthodontic procedures, removing permanent teeth is not always necessary for orthodontic treatment.
  9. How long will it take to complete treatment?
    Treatment time obviously depends on each patient’s specific orthodontic problem. In general, treatment time lasts from 8 months to 30 months. The “average” time that a person is in braces is approximately 18-24 months. View our patient profiles to see some final treatment results>
  10. How much will braces cost? Are financing options available? How does my insurance work?
    It is impossible to give an exact cost for treatment until Dr. Pavlo has examined you. We will cover the exact cost and financial options during the initial examination. We have several financing options available to accommodate your needs, and we will review these with you. We will also review your insurance policy and help to maximize your benefit and file your claims.
  11. How often will I have appointments?
    Appointments are scheduled according to each patient’s needs. Most patients in braces will be seen every 5 to 12 weeks. If there are specific situations that require more frequent monitoring, we will schedule appointments accordingly.
  12. Can I schedule all of my appointments after school?
    We are aware of and sympathetic to children’s school schedules. Therefore, we strive to minimize the number of times our patients will have to miss any school. Sometimes, especially for procedures that require longer appointments, we need to schedule these appointments in the morning. Some of our patients prefer to come in the early morning and then go to school. Unfortunately, we cannot schedule all appointments for students during after-school hours. However, because most appointments are scheduled 5 to 12 weeks apart, most patients will miss minimal school due to their orthodontic treatments. We will, however, make a sincere effort to meet your scheduling needs.
  13. Can I drop my child off for an appointment?
    Yes. We understand your busy schedule, and we are happy to help you make the most of your time. On some occasions, Dr. Pavlo or our highly trained certified orthodontic assistants may request to speak with a parent when they return, so we ask that parents check in with our front desk team before dropping off their child.
  14. Do braces hurt?
    Generally, braces do not “hurt.” After certain visits, teeth may be sore for a few days. In these situations, pain medications such as Advil or Tylenol will ease the discomfort. However, after most visits, patients do not feel any soreness at all! We often remind our patients, “It does not have to hurt to work!”
  15. Can I return to school the day I receive my braces?
    Yes. There is no reason to miss an entire school day because of an orthodontic appointment.
  16. Do you give shots?
    No. Shots are not necessary in orthodontic treatment.
  17. Do you use recycled braces?
    Absolutely not! It is our belief that each patient should be provided with their own braces to achieve the best orthodontic result possible.
  18. Can I still play sports?
    Yes. But wearing a protective mouth guard is advised while riding a bike, skating, or playing any contact sports, whether organized sports or a neighborhood game. Dr. Pavlo and his team will provide you with a specific mouth guard made for braces.
  19. Do I need to see my family dentist while in braces?
    Yes! Regular checkups with your family dentist are important while in braces. Your family dentist will determine the intervals between cleaning appointments while you are in braces. Dr. Pavlo recommends at least 2 cleanings / exams each year with your general dentist. Learn more about earning rewards points for visiting your dentist>
  20. Are there foods I cannot eat while I have braces?
    Yes. Once treatment begins, we will explain the complete instructions and provide a comprehensive list of foods to avoid. Some of those foods include: ice, hard candy, raw vegetables and all sticky foods (i.e. caramel and taffy). You can avoid most emergency appointments to repair broken or damaged braces by carefully following our instructions. Please refer to our list of foods to avoid on our “No-No” list. Click here for more information>
  21. How often should I brush my teeth while in braces?
    Patients should brush their teeth at least three to four times each day – after each meal and before going to bed is what Dr. Pavlo recommends. One of our team members will show each patient how to floss their teeth with braces and will provide a special fluoride called OrthoWash.
  22. What is an emergency appointment? How are those handled?
    If your braces are causing extreme pain or if something breaks causing discomfort, you should call our office. In most cases, we can address these issues over the telephone. If you require an emergency appointment, we will set aside time for you.
  23. Can orthodontic correction occur while a child has baby teeth?
    Yes. Some orthodontic problems are significant enough to require early intervention. However, if a patient is not yet ready for treatment, Dr. Pavlo will follow that patient’s growth and development until the time is right for treatment to begin.
  24. What is Phase One (early) Treatment?
    Phase One treatment, if necessary, is usually initiated on children between the ages of 7 and 10. Phase One treatment usually lasts about 12-20 months. The primary objective for Phase One treatment is to address significant problems to prevent them from becoming more severe and to improve self-esteem and self-image.
  25. Will my child need full braces if he/she has Phase One treatment?
    It is best to assume that your child will need full braces (Phase Two) even after Phase One treatment. The period following Phase One treatment is called the “resting period,” during which growth and tooth eruption are closely monitored by Dr. Pavlo. Throughout this period, parents and patients will be kept informed of future treatment recommendations.
  26. Will my child need an expander?
    At the completion of the initial examination, Dr. Pavlo will determine whether a patient will need a palatal expander. Learn more about appliances here>
  27. Is it too late to have braces if I am already an adult?
    A surprising percentage of our patients are adults. In fact, 25 percent of all orthodontic patients are adults. Health, happiness and self-esteem are vitally important to adults. No patient is “too old” to wear braces! Dr. Pavlo successfully treated a beautiful 91 year old young lady in only 14 months! Visit our Orthodontics for Adults section to learn more>
  28. Can I wear braces even though I have crowns and missing teeth?
    Yes. A tooth with a crown will move just like a tooth with a simple filling. When teeth are missing, orthodontic treatment will aid in the alignment of the remaining teeth.
  29. Why should you choose an orthodontic specialist?
    Teeth, and sometimes entire facial structures, are permanently changed by orthodontic treatment. It is important that the treatment be appropriate and properly completed. Orthodontic specialists have extensive and specialized training that enables them to provide their patients with professional, personalized treatments.
  30. Does my insurance cover treatment?
    Many patients have an orthodontic rider on their insurance plan designed to cover 20% to 50% of the treatment fees. Insurance coverage for orthodontic treatment differs from company to company. If you bring your insurance information with you to your first appointment, we will be able to determine what portion of your treatment may be covered.
  31. Do I see Dr. Pavlo at every appointment?
    Yes, absolutely!
  32. Will braces interfere with playing musical instruments?
    Playing wind or brass instruments, such as the trumpet, will clearly require some adaptation to braces. With practice and a period of adjustment, braces typically do not interfere with the playing of musical instruments
  33. Why does orthodontic treatment time sometimes last longer than anticipated?
    Estimates of treatment time can only be that – estimates. Patients grow at different rates and will respond in their own ways to orthodontic treatment. Dr. Pavlo has specific treatment goals in mind, and will usually continue treatment until these goals are achieved. Patient cooperation, however, is the single best predictor of staying on time with treatment. Patients who cooperate by wearing rubber bands, headgear or other needed appliances as directed, while taking care not to damage appliances, will most often lead to on-time and excellent treatment results.
  34. What is patient cooperation and how important is it during orthodontic treatment?
    Good “patient cooperation” means that the patient not only follows the Dr. Pavlo’s instructions on wearing appliances as prescribed and tending to oral hygiene and diet, but is also an active partner in orthodontic treatment.

    Successful orthodontic treatment is a “two-way street” that requires a consistent, cooperative effort by both Dr. Pavlo and the patient. To successfully complete the treatment plan, the patient must carefully clean his or her teeth, wear rubber bands, headgear or other appliances as prescribed by the orthodontist, avoid foods that might damage braces and keep appointments as scheduled. Damaged appliances can lengthen the treatment time and may undesirably affect the outcome of treatment. The teeth and jaws can only move toward their desired positions if the patient consistently wears the forces to the teeth, such as rubber bands, as prescribed. Patients who do their part consistently make themselves look great and Dr. Pavlo look smart!

    To keep teeth and gums healthy, regular visits to the family dentist every 6 months must continue both during and after orthodontic treatment. Click here to learn more about our rewards program.

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