Frequently Asked Questions About Orthodontics See Me Smile Dental Oxnard CA
Orthodontics FAQs See Me Smile Dental Oxnard CA

Orthodontics FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions About Orthodontics

Do you have crooked teeth or bite issues? Have you always wanted to straighten your teeth and achieve a stunning smile? Now you can do so with expert orthodontic care from See Me Smile Dental of Oxnard. We get a lot of questions about orthodontics in our office, and we have compiled the most common into this helpful list.

What Is an Orthodontist?

An orthodontist is a dentist who specializes in improving patients’ smiles by treating crooked and misaligned teeth. Orthodontists are required to obtain two to three years of specialized training in orthodontics after finishing dental school.

Dr. Hamid graduated from the University of Southern California’s prestigious School of Dentistry before going on to complete orthodontic training at the School of Dental Medicine at Harvard University.

What Is Orthodontic Care?

While general dentistry focuses on keeping the teeth, gums, and jaws healthy and functional, orthodontics is a specialized form of dentistry that is concerned with misalignments and irregularities of the teeth and jaws.

Orthodontics diagnoses, corrects, and prevents crooked teeth and malocclusions (bite issues). These issues can often impact biting and chewing ability, and orthodontic care improves their functioning. It also results in a more pleasing smile.

See Me Smile Dental of Oxnard uses all the latest orthodontic technologies and techniques to help you achieve the smile you have always wanted. You will love the way our staff works with you to design a treatment plan customized for you and your needs.

Nearly half of all Americans have orthodontic issues that could be corrected by an orthodontist, according to the American Association of Orthodontics. While 10% of these are considered “necessary” in a medical sense, the term is relative when it comes to the functioning and appearance of your smile!

What Happens During an Orthodontic Consultation?

When you come into our Oxnard office for your orthodontic consultation, you will first receive a thorough dental exam, so our staff knows what is going on with your teeth. This exam will include any necessary imaging technologies such as X-Rays or digital photos.

Your orthodontist will then discuss the results with you and make recommendations for the best orthodontic treatments for your particular needs. Treatment options include braces, retainers, headgear, and surgeries.

You and your provider will collaborate to create a custom treatment plan that will help give you the smile of your dreams. Finally, our friendly staff will give you a breakdown of the cost of your treatment and what your insurance will cover.

Why Would I Need Orthodontic Treatment?

You might need orthodontic treatment to correct a variety of misalignments and bite issues with your teeth and jaw. A few of the most common are described below. Correcting these issues will improve the functioning of your teeth as well as their appearance and make you less likely to develop gum disease and tooth decay as well.

Crooked Teeth

Teeth do not always come in straight. Many people have crooked teeth. While crooked teeth may make your smile less appealing, they also put more pressure on your jaw and create issues with chewing. They also make it more difficult to brush and floss properly.

Spaced Teeth

Also known as separated or gapped teeth, this issue occurs when your teeth come in too far apart, leaving a space (or “gap”) between them. This impairs the look of your smile and makes it harder to keep your gums healthy.

Crowded Teeth

When your teeth come in too close together, you have overcrowding instead of spaced teeth. This condition can cause many dental problems, from pain related to the overcrowding to physical damage to some of the crowded teeth. Being too close together also makes it harder to keep them clean.


An underbite occurs when your bottom teeth are too far forward. Sometimes they extend in front of the top teeth. This condition can lead to jaw pain, TMJ, and headaches.


The opposite of an underbite, an overbite happens when the top teeth protrude over the bottom teeth. This can be caused by a variety of issues from poor tooth positioning to the shape of your jaw. It is important to correct overbites because they can lead to the same types of health concerns as underbites and can also cause sleep apnea.

What Types of Braces Are There, and Which Kind Will I Need?

There are many different types of braces available now than there used to be. Traditional metal braces are still available, but even they have improved now and are more comfortable. They can also be customized with your choice of colors for brackets and elastics.

Porcelain ceramic braces are a newer type of orthodontic appliance that works much like metal braces but are made of porcelain. They are nearly invisible. Finally, Invisalign® consists of custom-made removable plastic aligners that are completely clear and noninvasive.

The best type of braces for you depends on your orthodontic needs and preferences. Not every orthodontic problem can be corrected by Invisalign® trays, for example. Your provider will make a recommendation for you during your consultation and help you choose the best option.

How Old Do You Need to Be To Get Orthodontic Treatment. Is There Such a Thing As “Too Old?”

Children need to be at least 7 years old before they start orthodontic treatment, though many do not need it until they are much older. All adults can undergo orthodontic treatment. There is no upper age limit. More adults are choosing to undergo orthodontic treatment all the time. They now account for 20% of all orthodontic patients.

How Long Does Orthodontic Treatment Take?

Treatment time depends on the nature of your orthodontic issues and the treatment selected, but usually ranges from one to three years.

What Are Invisalign® Clear Braces?

These are a new type of orthodontic appliance that is quickly gaining popularity. Invisalign® clear aligners consist of a series of customized plastic trays that fit over your teeth. You get one tray for the top teeth and another for the bottom teeth. You wear each set of trays for a few weeks before switching to the next one. They gently guide your teeth into place over time.

Invisalign® aligners can be removed for eating and drinking, meaning there are no dietary restrictions with this option. However, they will not correct every orthodontic issue and are therefore not an option for every patient.

What Is an Orthodontic Retainer and Why Would I Need One?

An orthodontic retainer is a device worn to help keep your teeth in place after orthodontic treatment. If you have braces, you will probably need to wear a retainer for at least some time after your braces are removed. Orthodontic retainers can be removable or nonremovable.

Removable orthodontic retainers are made from plastic and wire. The color and style can be customized. Nonremovable orthodontic retainers are made from wires attached to the backside of your teeth. Sometimes orthodontic retainers are used as a standalone orthodontic treatment for mild issues that do not require braces.

Do You Want a Better Smile?

Get started today by calling (805) 716-6890 and making a new patient appointment with See Me Smile Dental of Oxnard!