• What is the difference between an Orthodontist and a Dentist?

Orthodontics literally means straighten (ortho) teeth (dontic).

An orthodontist is a dentist specialist who has completed three extra years of full-time study and a Master of Dentistry degree to become an expert in orthodontics. A specialist orthodontist must cease general dentistry and stay within their orthodontic specialty. It’s just like a specialist in medicine can’t carry out general medical treatments.


  • How much is orthodontic treatment?

Depending on the extent of the treatment required will depend on the total investment of treatment.

At Fresh Smiles orthodontics we offer three different levels of treatment, Good, Better or Best. This means that we can customise your treatment to suit your needs, wants and budget.

We also offer start on the day discounts and payment plans with small to no deposits required depending on the treatment.


  • Will orthodontic treatment hurt?

Orthodontic treatment does not hurt and is best described as being uncomfortable. You will experience some mild discomfit throughout your orthodontic treatment when you have wires changed or change to your next Aligner.

A soft food diet and over the counter pain killers may be required for a few short days to help.


  • What is the difference between Invisalign clear aligners and Metal braces?

Invisalign treatment consists of a series of clear removable aligners, each one moving the teeth slowly into their corrected position. They are designed to look virtually invisible and need to be worn 22 hours a day, being removed for eating and cleaning.

Traditional metal braces consist of small metal brackets that are glued onto the surface of each tooth. An archwire is then used to help align the teeth. Foods that are hard, chewy or sticky need to be avoided during orthodontic treatment with braces.


  • How long will I be in treatment for?

This is the million dollar question which can never be answered exact!

In most cases full orthodontic treatment with tooth alignment and bite correction can take between 18-24 months. When you visit us for a complimentary consultation our Orthodontist will do their best to give you a rough estimate of treatment length and will do their best to keep you informed throughout treatment.


  • What happens if I lose an Invisalign Aligner?

We ask you to keep ALL of your Aligners until the end of treatment, this way if you do lose an Aligner you can go back to your previous one. It is always best to give us a call to confirm as in some cases we may instruct you to move forward to your next Aligner. But remember, it is always better to have something in then to not, so if you cannot get a hold of the practice, moving backwards is best.


  • What happens if I lose or break my retainer?

We like to say that retainer wear is for life, even if it is just 3 times a week. Teeth are always moving, so without night wear of your retainers you may find yourself back in orthodontic treatment. If you lose or break your retainer please give our reception staff a call so we can arrange a time for you to visit and have new impressions taken.


  • What happens if I break a wire or a bracket becomes loose?

You need to be careful during your treatment when it comes to your braces. Eating the incorrect foods or bad habits, such as chewing on pens, can lead to broken brackets and wires. As long as you stick to the instructions given to you breakages should not occur.

If a wire or bracket break, please contact our reception staff so we can arrange an appointment for you with in a 2 week period.


  • Do I have to change my eating habits if I get braces?

You need to avoid anything too sticky, hard or chewy.

Braces are delicate and easily damaged, so what you eat becomes especially important in caring for them and ensuring they remain effective. Avoid eating apples off the core, ice, chewy lollies and gum, as these can bend your wire, dislodge your brackets and loosen the bands that hold the arch wire that straightens the teeth.

Food can become lodged in the brackets of your braces, so always brush your teeth after eating.


  • What should I do if I notice a loose band, bracket or wire?

Please give us a call so we can evaluate the urgency of your problem, schedule an appointment, and offer advice on what to do in the meantime. If the band or the bracket is still attached to the wire, leave it in place and place wax on the broken area to reduce irritation. If the band or bracket comes out completely, wrap it in tissue and bring it with you to your appointment.

If you notice a loose wire, reposition it into place with tweezers – or if that is not possible, clip the wire with a pair of nail clippers or wire cutters behind the last tooth to which it is securely fastened. If one of the wires is poking out, push it down with a spoon, pencil or an eraser. Place wax over any areas where you feel discomfort.


  • What if I need to change my appointment time?

It’s important to keep all of your orthodontic treatment appointments; however we know that unforeseen circumstances arise which necessitates a change in appointment. Please give us at least 24 hours of notice to change or cancel an appointment. We will do our best to reschedule your appointment as soon as possible.


Is your question not listed here? Contact Fresh Smiles Orthodontics in Geelong and someone from our Belmont or Newtown clinics will be happy to answer you.