Orthodontics Frequently Asked Questions

Does my child need to see an orthodontist?

Here are some indications that an orthodontic problem may exist:

  • Thumb and finger sucking
  • Overlapping and crowded teeth
  • Missing teeth and/or extra teeth
  • Overbite
  • Underbite
  • Spaced teeth
  • Protruded upper front teeth
  • Mouth breathing
  • Crossbite
  • Unusual facial profile

If in doubt, please call for an appointment.  In our office, there is no charge for a child's examination.  If diagnostic records are necessary, you will be informed of the charges in advance.

When should my child see an orthodontist?

Every person is a little different.  Although treatment may not begin until much later, it is possible to detect a problem as early as age 7.  If you or your dentist suspects an orthodontic problem, an orthodontist should be contacted.

How will my child benefit from straight teeth?

Properly positioned teeth are much easier to care for and clean.  Correction of the bite not only helps with improved chewing and speech, but also plays an important role in reducing future wear of the teeth and stress on the supporting bone and jaw joints.  Orthodontic care may also improve an individual's self-image.

How does orthodontic care improve self-image?

Appearance has been related to interpersonal popularity, social behaviors, self-expectation, personality, style, and self-image.  There can be little doubt that an attractive facial appearance and smile can improve the quality of life.  All factors of facial and dental aesthetics are considered by Dr. Veilands in planning individual treatment strategies.

I see quite a few adults with braces.  Is this a growing trend?

Over 20% of our patients are adults.  Age is not a factor in orthodontic care.  This trend is expected to continue as adults become increasingly aware of the benefits of modern orthodontic therapy.

Why do people choose to have braces during adulthood?

Many of our adult patients are being treated for orthodontic problems that were not corrected when they were children.  These individuals realize that improving the health of their mouths and the attractiveness of their smiles and facial appearance often result in changes for the better in their personal lives.

Why see a specialist?

Many orthodontic problems are quite complex, involving growth of facial bones and the soft tissue profiles of the face, as well as misaligned teeth.  Proper treatment of such problems often requires the care of an orthodontist who has lengthy specialty training.

Is there an alternative to traditional braces for adults?

Dr. Veilands is certified to use the Invisalign System.  It is a series of clear orthodontic devices, called aligners that allow some adults to straighten their teeth without having to wear traditional braces.  Each set of custom-made aligners is worn for about two weeks and moves the teeth in small steps to the desired final position.

What specialty training has Dr. Veilands completed?

Dr. Anna Veilands earned her bachelor's degree in microbiology at Louisiana State University in 1991 and her DDs degree at LSU School of Dentistry in 1995, where she ranked in the top 5% of her class.  Dr. Veilands continued her education at the University of Tennessee, Memphis Health Science Center, where she earned her master's degree in orthodontics in 1998.  She received a National Institute of Health grant for her research in periodontics as well as awards from the American Academy of General Dentistry and the Academy of Periodontology.  Dr. Veilands was inducted into the National Honor Society Omicron Kappa Upsilon and C. Edmond Kells honor society.  Dr. Veilands is committed to treating orthodontic patients at the optimal time determined by the growth and development of the individual patient.

What will happen during my first visit to your office?

At your first appointment, a thorough and complete orthodontic evaluation will be performed.  This will include an analysis of facial and skeletal type, assessment of facial growth, and an examination of the bite, alignment of the teeth, health of the soft tissues, function of the jaw joints and adjacent supporting structures.  An estimate of the severity of any problems found will be made as well as an estimate of treatment fees.  If treatment is necessary, a complete set of diagnostic records will be recommended.

What are orthodontic records?

Orthodontic records usually include x-rays, photographs of the teeth and face, and models of the teeth.  The diagnostic records enable us to develop the appropriate treatment plan to correct the individual's orthodontic problem.  After orthodontic records are complete, you will be scheduled for a conference.

What is a conference?

After a thorough and complete individual diagnosis, a detailed course of treatment will be outlined for you.  This careful analysis allows us to also discuss fully any condition or problem which may not have been discovered at the first visit.  Financial and scheduling arrangements will also be finalized at the conference.

Can you tell me about your infection control program?

It is our policy to adhere to the highest standards of sterilization and patient protection.  For your peace of mind, we take a variety of precautions with each of our patients.  These precautions include the use of disposable, single-use materials, as well as heat sterilization of our instruments.

Is orthodontic care expensive?

Orthodontics often eliminates the need for other dental and medical treatment, thus reducing future health care costs.  Considering that the dental and psychological benefits of orthodontic care can last a lifetime, the cost is quite modest.

Do I have to pay for orthodontic care all at once?

We are sensitive to your financial circumstances and try to provide a flexible payment plan that is within the comfort level of your budget.  For your convenience, payments are usually spread over the estimated treatment time.

Do you accept my orthodontic insurance?

Yes.  We work with a wide range of dental insurance plans and are eager to help you receive the maximum benefits from your plan.  Please remember that most plans only pay a portion of your fee.  You are, of course, responsible for any amount not covered by your plan.

Should I continue to see my family dentist while in braces?

Definitely!  It is very important to continue your regular dental checkups to prevent or detect decay and to monitor the health of the supporting structures.  We will work with your dentist to help you maintain overall dental health and prevent dental disease.

How long does orthodontic treatment take?

Active treatment in full braces usually lasts from 20 to 24 months.  Some orthodontic problems require two phases of treatment.  The length of treatment will vary depending on treatment goals, degree of complexity, patient cooperation, and a number of other factors.

When will my appointments be scheduled?

We share your concern about missing school or work and schedule appointments so that each patient receives a fair proportion of convenient appointments.  We do schedule longer appointments for more difficult procedures during the mid-morning hours.  Excuses are provided when needed.

What happens if I have a problem with my braces after hours or on a weekend?

Orthodontic emergencies do not often occur, but if you have a problem, we respond quickly.  Emergency care is provided at all times.

What can I expect from your practice?

We measure our success by long-term results.  You can expect the art in treatment that only years of experience and thousands of cases can bring.  We focus on meticulous, state-of-the-art care in orthodontics.  Dr. Veilands performs the fitting of the braces.  It is not delegated.  We intend to treat you so well personally and technically that you will feel comfortable in recommending us to your friends and family.