Why You Should Consider Seeing An Orthodontist

Over four million Canadians and Americans receive treatments from an orthodontic specialist to achieve a healthy, beautiful smile. While the most obvious benefit of orthodontic treatment is straight, even teeth, other benefits are just as important or even more so. If you are considering orthodontic treatment for yourself or a member of the family, you may want to learn more about this type of treatment.

Importance of Orthodontics

Orthodontics is a branch of dentistry that focuses on the correction and improvement of the teeth and jaws, particularly among individuals who have problems with alignment. In most societies, crooked teeth are considered less than ideal and are properly corrected by an orthodontist. Orthodontic treatment can help improve a patient’s confidence and self-esteem, as successful treatments help correct teeth, lips, and jaw issues. These corrections are aimed at promoting a more pleasing, symmetrical appearance.

Orthodontic treatment also helps prevent problems associated with misaligned teeth. Because crooked teeth are difficult to clean, they are more susceptible to tooth decay, chewing difficulties, bone destruction, gum disease, and even digestive problems. Malocclusions or bad bites can also lead to speech problems, chipped teeth, tooth loss, and dental injuries.

The Role of the Canadian Association of Orthodontists

The Canadian Association of Orthodontists is an association of qualified professionals of orthodontic specialists. The organization aims to advance the practice of orthodontics and dentofacial orthopedics for the improvement of public health by providing quality care and promoting the successful orthodontic practice.

What is an Orthodontic Specialist

An orthodontics Edmonton specialist or orthodontist is a doctor of dentistry who specializes in the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of facial and dental irregularities. To be able to practice, an orthodontist must complete a four-year graduate program in a school accredited by the Canadian Dental Association. He/She must complete a two to three-year residency program focusing on orthodontics in a CDA-accredited school thereafter. The advanced training includes studies in embryology, genetics, biophysics, and human growth and development. Only when dentists have completed this specialty education can they be considered orthodontists.

Benefits of Orthodontics

A straight, healthy, and beautiful smile is just one of the many benefits of orthodontics. When the lips, teeth, and jaws are properly aligned, the smile does not only look great; it is also likely to be healthy. Straight teeth have better functionality and are easy to clean. They also promote self-esteem and confidence – psychological benefits that are considered the top treatment goal of patients who see an orthodontist. An even, beautiful smile is one of the best physical assets that anyone could have and it is just the beginning. Achieving good oral health is the first step to one’s overall health and well-being.

Understanding Malocclusions

Malocclusion refers to the misalignment or crookedness of the teeth, whether they are on the lower or upper jaw. When teeth are uneven, protruding, or crowded, they generally do not fit in the mouth properly. The condition may also refer to cases wherein a patient has missing or extra teeth, wide-spaced teeth, a cleft palate, or other irregularities in the face and jaw. In some cases, the malocclusion is inherited. In others, it may have been acquired. The misalignment in a patient’s teeth could have been caused by a number of things such as thumbsucking, tongue thrusting, accidents, premature teeth loss (either primary or permanent), dental disease, or some type of medical problem.

If these are left untreated, the orthodontic problems could worsen. When teeth are crooked or crowded, they are difficult to clean and hard to maintain. This, in turn, contributes to problems such as gum disease and tooth decay, which eventually lead to tooth loss. Malocclusion can also cause premature or abnormal wear of the enamel or tooth surface. It could also lead to chewing issues and unnecessary pressure on the supporting gum tissue and bone.

Who Needs to See An Orthodontist?

Contrary to what most people think, braces are not just for children. The fact is that one in four Canadians who are undergoing orthodontic treatment is older than 21. The basic process used to move teeth to their proper place is exactly the same, whether the patient is a child or an adult. In fact, proper orthodontic treatment can produce successful results regardless of the patient’s age. How fast and how well the results are will be determined by the health of the patient’s gums and teeth, and the condition of the supporting bones.

Most anyone can benefit from orthodontic treatment. When it comes to looking your best and improving your health, no one is ever too old.

The Right Time to See An Orthodontist

According to the AAO, a young patient should see an orthodontist at around seven years of age or younger. Some patients may even require orthodontic treatment at just 2 or 3 years old. It is often easier for an orthodontist to correct problems when they are diagnosed early, particularly when jaw growth has not stopped. With early treatment, the patient can avoid serious corrections or even surgery.

What is the Difference Between an Orthodontist and a Dentist?

Dentistry is a broad term for a medical practice that includes orthodontics. An orthodontist is a dental specialist who focuses on the correction of irregularities of the teeth and jaws. They are trained to safely move teeth and ensure that jaws develop correctly. In short, an orthodontist is a dentist that specializes in correcting dental and facial issues.

Members of the CAO carry a unique qualification to treat bad bites. In fact, the organization requires all orthodontist members to complete a minimum of two years in post-doctoral specialty training under an accredited program. Orthodontists have to complete this advanced training after they have completed dental school.

Is Orthodontic Treatment Expensive?

The cost will depend on the treatment requirement of the patient. As each patient is unique, there is no such thing as a one-price-fits-all cost. However, you will be surprised to know that orthodontic treatment is not as expensive as you may have thought. Many treatments require only a short time period to complete. If you have questions and concerns, feel free to discuss them with your orthodontist. He/She may even offer affordable payment plans to match your financial needs. There are also insurance plans that include dental treatments such as orthodontics at an affordable cost.

Finding The Right Orthodontist: Getting Treatments

Working with the right orthodontist is important if you want no compromises with your or your child’s smile. Orthodontic treatments could be long and tedious. Therefore, it’s imperative you work with a doctor with whom you or your kid is comfortable in a professional setting. An orthodontic experience gone right or wrong would get etched into your minds for long. Make sure they are happy memories. If you are not sure about a service provider, seek recommendations from people you know.

Choosing the right orthodontist is not easy, particularly if you have never been to one before. Therefore, talk to someone who has prior experience with orthodontists. The person recommending your services could be a friend, family member, colleague, or anyone who is forthcoming about sharing their personal experiences with you. Your dentist may offer you solid recommendations too, especially if the dentist’s kids have had braces before.

Consider Experience and Education

Once you’ve compiled a list of orthodontists, research a bit more. Know about your potential orthodontist’s educational background, the school(s) they attended, the types of specialty training or continuity education they have had, etc. Prior to booking a consultation, kindly confirm the orthodontist is a licensed American Association of Orthodontists member. This membership ensures the orthodontist would stay updated on the most effective and newest clinical procedures.

Consult with More Than One Orthodontist

Different orthodontists work differently. Consulting with a handful of orthodontists is therefore wise. Some could provide specific orthodontic treatment products or choices that others wouldn’t. Compare the duration of treatment and the costs. Also, it’s important you feel at ease with the orthodontist in your vicinity. An affable orthodontist is someone who has pleasant chairside manners, pays close attention to everything you say or share, has a team that’s friendly and helpful, etc. When you visit multiple orthodontist offices, you would most likely come across an orthodontist who is friendly, meets your individual requirements, and falls within your budget.

Ask Questions

Use the consultation period to ask questions and clear all your doubts. During the session, make sure you understand the kind of orthodontic problems you are experiencing and how can they be treated most effectively. The more knowledge you gain about your condition, the easier it would be for you to decipher solid orthodontic services from the average.

A Few Things Worth Consideration

  • Will the orthodontist oversee you first-hand or will their assistants take charge of things?
  • Is the orthodontics clinic located close to your house or workplace so that appointments can be fixed easily?
  • Is the orthodontist or their clinic willing to work outside working hours?
  • What are the insurance types the clinic accepts, and how does financing work?
  • Are the orthodontist and the team truly keen on offering you a personalized experience, or are you just another patient for them?

General Dentist or Orthodontist?

An orthodontics specialist would have a bigger impact on your smile compared to a general dentist. An orthodontist is a specialist, which a general dentist isn’t. Choosing a general dentist over an orthodontist can be likened to opting for a general physician over a child’s specialist to treat your kid’s health issues. Working with a specialist will always be wise compared to working with a generalist.

To be certified as an orthodontist, a dentist should go through an extra two or three years of residency program training at an accredited medical school and clear national board examinations. This education, in addition to working purely in the field of orthodontics, offers orthodontists the acumen and authority to create customized treatment plans and offer predictable, efficient, and safe treatments.

Learn more about Dr Strohecker

Thank you for visiting the official website of Strohecker Orthodontic Associates.

Dr. Sandra Strohecker Beckett and Dr. Leon H. Strohecker are dedicated to providing the highest quality orthodontic treatment in a professional, personalized, and friendly setting. The physical and psychological benefits gained from orthodontic treatment are tremendous. When teeth are properly aligned, they look and function better, increasing self-esteem and confidence. Our orthodontists and orthodontic assistants work together as an expert team to achieve the best possible smile and facial appearance for you and your loved ones!

Dr. Sandy Strohecker Beckett worked as a dental hygienist for eight years before becoming an orthodontist. She grew up with orthodontics, as she is Dr. Strohecker’s daughter. After graduating from Germantown Academy, Dr. Beckett spent two years at Ursinus College and two years at Thomas Jefferson University where she received a Bachelor’s Degree in Dental Hygiene and Education. Dr. Beckett spent the next eight years practicing as a Dental Hygienist in Camp Hill and teaching Oral Hygiene in the public school system of Harrisburg.

Having decided on a career change, she went on to Dental School at the University of Maryland to obtain her DDS. After graduating from dental school, she went on to study orthodontics for two years at the University of Pennsylvania’s School of Dental Medicine in The Post Doctoral Orthodontic Program where she was awarded her Orthodontic Specialty Certification in June of 1999. . “I gained a lot of insight into orthodontics from both sides of the chair before making orthodontics my career. Orthodontics, however, is a science that constantly advances. That’s why even after practicing since 1999, I will never consider my education complete.”

Her membership in professional organization and continuing education courses enable her to provide our patients with the most up-to-date care available. A member of the American Association of Orthodontics, she is also a member of the American Dental Association, Pennsylvania Dental Society, Middle Atlantic Orthodontic Society, and Montgomery-Bucks Dental Society.

Sandy has been married for twenty-one years to Kelly Beckett, and they reside in Horsham with their Yellow Lab, Bentley, their pride and joy.