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Braces FAQ


Common Braces Questions

Below you’ll find answers to the questions we hear most often from our Cary, Raleigh and Durham braces patients. If you’d like even more detail, schedule a complimentary consultation at VanderWall Orthodontics today!

Q: What happens when I get my braces put on?

A: Getting braces put on is painless. First, we’ll prime the surfaces of your teeth for the adhesive we use. Then, Dr. VanderWall will stick the brackets on either the front or the back of your teeth, depending on the type of braces you choose. He’ll thread your archwires through the brackets. Before you leave, a team member will tell you everything you need to know about caring for your braces, from what to eat to how to brush and floss.

Q: What happens when I get my braces taken off?

A: Dr. VanderWall will use special tools to remove your wires and loosen and take off your brackets (it doesn’t hurt at all!). He’ll get rid of any leftover adhesive, polish your teeth and let you check out your fantastic new smile.

Q: How long do braces take to straighten teeth?

A: The length of braces treatment varies depending on the individual since every patient responds differently to treatment and each case is unique. Your braces treatment time can take anywhere between six and 30 months, though, on average, standard treatments last about 22 months.

Q: Do braces hurt?

A: No, you should never feel real braces pain. However, when you first start treatment and following adjustments, your teeth and jaw can be a little sore. This is normal and the mild discomfort will go away in a few days. If you need to, you can take an over-the-counter, non-aspirin pain reliever to manage the sensitivity.

Q: Do I need to brush my teeth more often if I have braces?

A: When you have braces, you should brush your teeth in the morning, after meals and snacks, and before bed to keep your teeth and gums healthy. Brushing regularly will get rid of any food and plaque that may get caught between your braces. You’ll also want to floss daily to clean in between your braces and teeth where you toothbrush can’t reach. A VanderWall Orthodontics team member will show you how to properly brush and floss with braces once we put them on.

Q: Will my braces interfere with activities like sports, playing an instrument or singing?

A: While singing or playing an instrument with braces might take a little getting used to, once you acclimate, you’ll have no problem. Playing sports with braces is perfectly fine, however, you’ll want to wear a mouthguard to protect your appliance, your teeth and your mouth.

Q: How much do braces cost?

A: One of the first questions most patients ask is, how much do braces cost? The braces cost varies depending on a number of factors, including how complex your case is, the type of braces you choose and how long your treatment lasts. At VanderWall Orthodontics, we strive to make our Durham, Cary and Raleigh, NC braces affordable for everyone. We accept and file most insurance plans and offer flexible financing options, including no down payment for conventional braces and pay-as-you-go plans with low monthly payments. We even offer family discounts when two or more members of the same family are in treatment.

Q: Am I too old for braces?

A: No! It’s never too late to get a healthy, beautiful smile you’re proud to show off. In fact, about one in every four orthodontic patients in North America is an adult. While, of course, a major benefit of treatment is getting an attractive smile, straightening your teeth will also improve your confidence, your oral health and, in turn, your overall health.

Even though the metal braces we use today are smaller and more comfortable, we also have a host of under-the-radar treatment options. Our most popular braces for adults include clear braces, which blend in with your teeth, and InBrace® hidden braces, which are placed on the back of the teeth, making them completely invisible. Or, if you don’t want braces at all, we offer 3M™ Clarity™ Aligners and Invisalign®. To find out how we can make braces treatment work for your busy lifestyle and smile needs, schedule a free consultation with Dr. Clay VanderWall today!

Q: How often will I need to see Dr. VanderWall during braces treatment?

A: For most treatment plans, you’ll swing by for a visit every six to eight weeks. Dr. VanderWall will check your progress, answer your questions and make adjustments, if necessary.

Q: Do I still need to have regular dental check-ups every six months during braces treatment?

A: Yes! In fact, it’s even more important to see your general dentist for a cleaning and check-up during orthodontic treatment. This is because braces can trap food and plaque, which could lead to cavities or even gum disease. Your dentist will work closely with Dr. VanderWall to make sure your teeth stay clean and healthy while you’re wearing braces.

Your Smile Transformation Starts Here!

Find out how we can give you a healthy, confident smile with braces or clear aligners in Durham, Raleigh or Cary, NC.

Book A free consultation

Your Smile Transformation Starts Here!

Find out how we can give you a healthy, confident smile with braces or clear aligners in Durham, Raleigh or Cary, NC.

Book A free consultation