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FAQ:  Adult Orthodontics

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Orthodontics Ask The Dentist - Edward Leventhal Question:
I am 37 and had braces put on about 3 weeks ago. I initially had difficulty adjusting to the bands on my molars. My tongue was getting cut up and also I was getting ulcers on my tongue. The ortho grinded the bands down on my molars.

My regular/general dentist polished a point on one of my molars that kept getting in the way. He also adjusted my bite. My tongue problem has now cleared up. I am having trouble chewing I cannot bring my back teeth together. The lower back molar bracket keeps bumping into the upper back molar. The lower right bracket bumps into my upper right molar. It's much more pronounced on the left side. Also, my molars are still extremely sore.

The ortho and ortho assistant tell me that my bite is opening up. I was under the impression that my bite was fine in the back. Is this common for your bite to be so off and for your molars to still be extremely tender its difficult to chew? Any input will be helpful. Thank you.

Also, a friend of my that has braces was telling about the possibility of root absorption and that the roots of my teeth could be destroyed. This sounds pretty scary. I was unaware of this. Could you please provide some insight on root absorption. ...Diana in PA

Diana, initially, your 'bite' is leveling out, and therefore, it will change from one week to the next, hang in there. As far as root resorption goes, this usually is gone over with informed consent, those are one of many things that could go wrong with having braces. However, the benefits far outweigh them. Consult with your orthodontist to go over the pros and cons of having braces. Hope this helps.

Edward Leventhal, DDS
Baltimore Cosmetic Implant Dentistry
8860 Belair Road
Baltimore, MD 21236
(410) 256-7300

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