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Not all smiles are created equal. If you’re self-conscious about the appearance of your teeth, it may be time to consider orthodontic treatment. Braces can straighten crooked or misaligned teeth and give you a beautiful smile.
Use this quick quiz to find out if braces will benefit your smile.
If your answer to any of these questions is yes, orthodontic treatment may help improve the alignment and appearance of your teeth. An orthodontist can correct irregularities in the alignment of your teeth with braces. However, it’s not suitable for everyone, so let’s take a look at some situations where braces could be beneficial
Question 1: Are you’re unhappy with the alignment of your teeth?
- Answer 1: I'm very unhappy with the alignment of my teeth
- Answer 2: I'm somewhat unhappy with the alignment of my teeth
- Answer 3: I'm not unhappy with the alignment of my teeth
Teeth that aren’t properly aligned can cause problems with your biting and chewing ability. If your teeth are crooked, they can make it difficult to keep them clean and fresh. If you answer yes to this particular question in our braces quiz, you are more likely to actually need braces.
Question 2: Do you feel self-conscious about the size or appearance of your teeth when you smile or speak?
- Answer 1: Yes, I avoid showing my teeth when I smile
- Answer 2: I'm not satisfied with how my teeth look, but I'm not self-conscious about it
- Answer 3: I'm happy about how my teeth look
If you feel self-conscious about the size or appearance of your teeth when you smile or speak, braces can help. This can be particularly important if you’re participating in a public speaking event or if you’re about to go on a romantic date. Braces can even out the size of your teeth. If one tooth is significantly larger than the others, it can cause you to feel self-conscious. Orthodontic treatment can help even out your teeth and make them appear more even.
Question 3: True or false? My teeth crowding is causing discomfort in my jaw and mouth area
This is often referred to as “low crowding.” It occurs when your teeth are misaligned and don’t have enough room in your jaw. Teeth crowding can occur for several reasons, including genetics and improper oral hygiene. If you’re a teenager, the treatment for low crowding may be just a retainer.
Question 4: Do your teeth turn in or out?
- Answer 1: Yes, many of them do
- Answer 2: Just a few turn in or out
- Answer 3: None of my teeth turn in or out
This is referred to as “malocclusion.” Teeth that turn out can cause discomfort and make it difficult to clean your teeth. Most cases of malocclusion can be treated with braces. Do you need braces if your teeth are turned in? Yes, in many cases you do need braces.
Question 5: Do you have gaps between your teeth?
- Answer 1: I have a lot of gaps between my teeth
- Answer 2: I have a gap between my front teeth
- Answer 3: I have no gaps between my teeth
These gaps are called “tooth gaps.” You may have a tooth gap between two teeth on one side of your mouth or between two teeth on both sides of your mouth. Gaps between your teeth can make it more difficult to clean your teeth properly. Depending on the severity of your condition, you may be able to correct the problem with a retainer or a few dental sealants.
Question 6: Do you have a bite problem such as overbite or underbite?
- Answer 1: I have an overbite
- Answer 2: I have an underbite
- Answer 3: I have neither an overbite or underbite
This is when your bite doesn’t align properly. Braces are commonly used to treat bite problems such as an overbite or underbite. You may have been born with a bite problem or you may have acquired it due to improper oral hygiene. Teeth are attached via the gums. If your gums are unhealthy, they can cause your teeth to misalign.
Question 7: Have you ever been referred to an orthodontist?
- Answer 1: Yes, I have
- Answer 2: No, I have not
Orthodontic treatment is usually recommended for anyone who has an uneven bite, has teeth that are misaligned, has a severe tooth gap, or has a bite problem. After you finished this "Do I need braces quiz", you should ask your dentist if you can get referred to an orthodontist.
Question 8: Do you have a hard time chewing your food?
- Answer 1: I have a very hard time chewing my food
- Answer 2: Yes, but it depends on what food I eat
- Answer 3: No, I do not have a hard time chewing food
This could be due to teeth that are misaligned or the lack of space in your mouth. If your teeth are misaligned, it can make it difficult to chew your food. This may cause you to eat slower or chew your food more thoroughly. As your teeth are misaligned, they may also be positioned too close together. This can cause you to move the food around in your mouth without actually chewing it. Your bite may also be too narrow or too wide.
Questions and answers about having braces
How much do braces cost?
Braces are an investment in your child’s future, so you need to be prepared for the cost. The type of braces and the number of teeth involved will affect the price. When calculating the cost, be sure to include the appointment and retainer fees. Braces usually cost between $5000 and $8000, and this is the average cost across Canada.
Does Medicaid cover braces?
If you are on Medicaid, then you may be thinking that the government will cover braces, but this is not the case. Medicaid will cover dental care only if you are in a special needs situation. If your child is getting braces, ask your dentist if you would benefit from paying less. Many dentists will offer payment plans, which can make the cost more manageable.
Do braces hurt?
The short answer is no. Braces are very safe, and most kids will not have any pain during treatment. Some kids will experience some soreness at the beginning of treatment, but this is temporary and should subside after a couple of weeks. Braces can sometimes cause gum irritation and teeth sensitivity, but this is rare. If your child’s gums or teeth become irritated or bleed, then you should talk to your dentist.
How do I floss with braces?
Flossing is an important part of oral hygiene, but it can be tricky when you have braces. As a child with braces, you will need to change the way you floss. In most cases, you will remove the braces before you floss, and then put them back on afterward. For adults with braces, the best way to floss is to keep the braces on and use a floss threader.