Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Why select an orthodontist?
Selecting an orthodontist in Memphis who can help you achieve your smile dreams is important. Orthodontists are
dental specialists who
diagnose, prevent and
treat dental and facial
receive an additional
two to three years of
beyond dental school
to learn the proper way
to align and straighten
teeth. Only those with
this formal education
may call themselves “orthodontists,” and only
orthodontists may be members of the American
Association of Orthodontists (AAO). Dr. Kyle Fagala from Saddle Creek Orthodontics has achieved this specialization and is an active member in AAO.
Q: When should children get an orthodontic check-up?
The AAO recommends that your child get
an orthodontic check-up no later than age 7.
By this age, Dr. Fagala can spot subtle
problems with jaw growth and emerging
teeth while some baby teeth are still present.
That’s important, because some orthodontic
problems may be easier to correct if they’re
found early. Most orthodontic patients begin
active braces treatment between ages 9 and 14.
Q: Can adults benefit from orthodontic treatment?
Orthodontic treatment can be successful at
almost any age. In fact, about one in every four orthodontic patients today is over age 18.
Thanks to today’s smaller, less visible and more
comfortable orthodontic appliances, including metal braces, ceramic braces, Incognito, and Invisalign, adults
are finding treatment more appealing.
Q: How long does treatment take?
Patients who need orthodontic treatment
generally have one to three years of active
treatment. This can be determined through a free braces consultation at our Germantown office.
Q: How much does treatment cost?
The cost of orthodontic treatment will depend
on many factors, including the severity of the
problem, its complexity and length of treatment. Dr. Fagala
will be glad to
discuss the cost
of treatment and
options with you
are finding that
braces are more
than ever. Our staff also works with insurance companies and offers payment plans that meet many budgets.
Q: What causes orthodontic problems?
Most orthodontic problems are inherited.
Examples of these genetic problems are
crowding, spacing, protrusion, extra or
missing teeth and some jaw growth problems.
Other malocclusions are acquired by thumb-
or finger-sucking, dental disease, accidents,
the early or late loss of baby (primary) teeth,
or other causes.
Q: Why is treatment so important?
Crooked and crowded teeth are hard to
clean and maintain. A bad bite can also cause
abnormal wear of tooth surfaces, difficulty in
chewing and/or speaking, and excess stress
on supporting bone and gum tissue. Without
treatment, many problems become worse and
can require additional dental care later in life.
Q: What is my role in treatment?
Orthodontic treatment is a partnership of the
doctor and patient. Dr. Fagala provides
custom-made fixed or removable appliances
that use gentle pressure to move teeth into
their proper positions. For the patient, orthodontic treatment always requires following Dr. Fagala's instructions, keeping scheduled
orthodontic appointments and maintaining
excellent oral hygiene to achieve the best
results. You will also need to see your general
dentist as recommended to continue your
general dental care.
Q: I had braces as a teen, and now as an adult my teeth are out of place. What can I do?
If you notice an unwanted change in your smile or bite,
contact Saddle Creek Orthodontics at 901-726-3878 for information. An orthodontic
“tune up” may be necessary to regain proper alignment.
Q: Will wisdom teeth cause teeth to shift?
Research suggests that wisdom teeth do not necessarily
cause teeth to shift. In most cases, removal of wisdom
teeth is done for general dental health reasons rather
than for orthodontic health. Your family dentist or Dr. Fagala can give you guidance regarding removal of
Q: How long do I have to wear retainers after treatment?
Dr. Fagala will recommend how long to continue
wearing your retainers, whether they are removable
(the kind you put in and take out) or fixed (bonded behind
your teeth). Wearing your retainers as prescribed is
the best way to keep your teeth from moving after your
orthodontic treatment. There are many reasons teeth may
move following orthodontic treatment. Teeth are not set
in concrete, they are in bone. Because bone around
your teeth is continually changing (breaking down and
rebuilding), your teeth may shift after your braces are
removed. By wearing your retainers, your teeth are more
likely to remain where Dr. Fagala has placed them through braces treatment.
Q: Why do some teeth shift?
The small changes that occur after braces are removed are
due to a “settling in” as you use your teeth for biting and
chewing. The more serious and undesirable changes may
be traced to genetics or later-than-normal growth, which
is unpredictable. Movement is most common in lower
front teeth. This is particularly true if the teeth were
extremely crowded prior to treatment. Changes in tooth
position are a lifelong and naturally occurring phenomenon.
The best way to keep teeth from shifting is to wear your
retainers as prescribed. If you notice movement after your
braces are removed, please contact Saddle Creek Orthodontics.
Q: What should my long-term expectations be?
The fact is that throughout your lifetime, even though
you have had orthodontic treatment, you can expect
changes in tooth position. Many factors at work may
cause teeth to shift. Such changes vary from individual
to individual and most of the time they are hardly
noticeable. However, on occasion changes can occur that are
disappointing to both the patient and Dr. Fagala.
Changes in tooth position are not a failure of your orthodontic treatment but are a natural process. We expect
changes in our bodies as we grow older, and teeth are
no exception. To help control and limit these changes,
retainers are prescribed after your braces are removed.
Q: Can retainers be worn too long?
No. Retainers stabilize and preserve the alignment of
teeth and jaws that orthodontic treatment achieved. Many
people wear removable retainers nightly for the rest of
their lives. Ask your orthodontist for guidance about your
long-term retainer wear.
*Some Text Courtesy of the American Association of Orthodontists