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Orthodontics FAQs

Invisalign - Fitchburg & Madison, WI

Stop Putting it Off!

Patients of Dr. Cotey are often thrilled to discover that they are prime candidates for clear braces.

Please contact our office today to set up your appointment.

Only a thorough examination will tell if you can benefit from the Invisalign® method to straighten crooked teeth.

Know the Facts about Clear Braces

Are you interested in fixing your crooked teeth? You are definitely not alone. Many people want perfect smiles; however, they do not necessarily want traditional metal braces. Instead, they want a more discreet solution: clear braces.

Dr. Angela Cotey offers Invisalign® clear braces at her practice. Whether you are a teen or an adult, you can benefit from the advantages that Invisalign® offers.


How Invisalign® Clear Braces Work

The Invisalign® method of addressing crooked teeth is simple to understand. Plastic trays, which are nearly invisible, are molded to the shape of your mouth. These trays are then worn all day and night, except at mealtimes. When eating, the trays should be removed; then, the teeth should be cleaned before reinserting the trays. The trays are usually unnoticeable by people around you, which is a bonus for professionals who feel that traditional braces might detract from their authority in a workplace setting.

About every two weeks, you will have to replace your trays with a new set. The new trays will put slightly more pressure on your teeth to move to the desired location as determined by Dr. Cotey. Over time, the trays gently but firmly move crooked teeth into a better position. Most people report feeling very little discomfort, mainly because the movement of their teeth is so gradual. At the end of the Invisalign® treatment, a retainer will be made and should be worn every night to ensure the teeth stay in their newly aligned positions.


Invisalign® Is Perfect for Many Patients

Patients of Dr. Cotey are often thrilled to discover that they are prime candidates for clear braces. Please contact our office today to set up your appointment. Only a thorough examination will tell if you can benefit from the Invisalign® method to straighten crooked teeth near Fitchburg, WI.

Ortho FAQ:

  1. The ideal age is about 7 or when a child has their 6 year molars and 4 front permanent teeth on the upper and lower; although, for most kids the ideal time for braces is after when they have most or all their adult teeth ate about age 1

  2. There are certain issues that are best treated early to take advantage of the child's growth periods. Some examples are a cross bite or severe crowding where the jaws may need an appliance to help their growth. This can prevent a child from needing their teeth pulled later.

  3. It's never too late for orthodontics! Tooth movement can be a bit slower on adults but it's becoming more and more popular for adults to get braces or use other methods to straighten their teeth. With technology today there is no reason anyone should live with a smile they don't love.

  4. Traditional braces are certainly the gold standard especially to fix bite problems; however, for those adults who want to address specific concerns, many times we do limited orthodontic treatment. This is a very common thing we do at our office. We use two approaches based on a variety of factors. One is called 6 month smiles and it uses clear braces and wires so ti is very discreet. Treatment is usually complete in 6-9 months and it mostly just addresses the smile without correcting the bite as most adults have adapted to their current bite. Another option is Invisalign, a set of clear trays that are worn continuously and changed at home every two weeks and gently move the teeth. Our own office manager, Amanda, just completed her Invisalign and our patients didn't even notice her trays were in when she was speaking to them.

  5. Treatment time really varies case by case but for traditional treatment it is usually around 2 years give or take. More complex treatment may be up to 3 years and less complex 1 - 1/2 years. For limited treatment, especially adults who had past orthodontics it can be anywhere from 3 months to 1 year. We recommend retainers for life to prevent relapse. They are very comfortable and only need to be worn at night while sleeping. Some patients may also be good candidates for permanent bonded retainers. Many of the adult cases we do are adults who had past braces and then the teeth shifted from not wearing a retainer but with retainers the results will be lasting.

  6. Besides looking nicer, they do not contain mercury like the silver fillings. Other advantages of white is silver needs to be a certain thickness and don't bond to tooth. Therefore sometimes healthy tooth is removed to help them stay while it can be more conservative to bond so they don't leak over time. Silver can cause cracks in teeth. Many patients wonder why a crown may be a better option than a filling. Fillings are great for small cavities but when a tooth is broken or has a very large filling in it, a crown is the best option to prevent the tooth from breaking. Crowns are made from metal or porcelain, a stronger material than fillings. When little of your own tooth is remaining a crown will cover and protect it from breaking or having cracks go deeper and into the nerve. This can help prevent needing a root canal or having the tooth break beyond repair where it needs to be pulled.

  7. Over 1/2 the US population has some form of gum disease and so a traditional dental cleaning, for those with healthy gums and bone does not treat the areas of gum disease and infection under the gum. A deeper cleaning, called scaling and root planing, is the procedure to treat this.

  8. Each pt is different and some patients will benefit from a cleaning more often to prevent more severe issues. Patients with past gum disease can avoid bone loss, those with higher risk for cavities such as dry mouth and those in current orthodontic treatment or systemic conditions will benefit from coming in more often for preventative visits to prevent bone loss, decay and gum disease.

  9. Many areas we cant see in a visual exam. Things may be missed such as cavities between the teeth, bone loss and infections or pathology in the bone or roots of the teeth. These areas can only be seen with x-rays; however, the radiation in dental x-rays is very small as what we are looking at is very focused and with the use of digital x-rays.

  10. Plans can vary greatly and your insurance company is not able to look in your mouth. They are not a clinician who can best recommend a treatment. They often defer to the least expensive option or generalize an average. For example as we discussed some patients benefit from more frequent cleanings and prevent bigger problems. Also many insurance won't cover white fillings.

  11. Usually at age 6 but children can vary so anywhere from 5-7 is typical. We give our patient those nice charts that can also be found on ada.org and it shows the typical range for each baby and adult tooth.

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