Qualicum Beach (250) 752-0818

Port Alberni (250) 723-1333

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Why should I see an orthodontist?
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Orthodontic treatment not only aligns your teeth but also ensures proper bite function and healthy jaw joints. Our team has the expertise to deliver the smile you desire with confidence.

Do I need a referral from my dentist to see an orthodontist?
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No referral is necessary. Just give us a call, and we'll schedule your initial consultation. While some patients are referred by their family dentist, many others hear about us from friends and take the initiative to schedule their consultation independently.

When should my child visit an orthodontist?
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The Canadian Association of Orthodontists recommends an orthodontic screening at age 7. While most cases do not require treatment until all permanent teeth have erupted around age 12, there are situations where early intervention is advised.

Is there an age limit for braces?
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It's never too late to achieve the smile you've always wanted. Approximately 25% of our patients are adults who have successfully undergone orthodontic treatment.

Can teeth straighten naturally as you grow?
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Teeth don't naturally straighten as you grow. In fact, the available space for front teeth often decreases with age, leading to crookedness in most cases. Timely orthodontic treatment can prevent future issues.

Will I need a tooth extraction for braces?
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To achieve the best orthodontic results, occasionally, tooth extraction may be necessary. While we aim to minimize extractions, in certain cases, it is the most suitable treatment option.

How do I know if I need orthodontic treatment?
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Orthodontic treatment can be indicated for various reasons, including improving the appearance, function, and health of your smile. Our doctors evaluate your bite and tooth positioning during the initial consultation, recommending treatment when necessary.

How does orthodontic treatment work?
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Orthodontic treatment utilizes braces or Invisalign, which exert gentle, continuous pressure to gradually reposition teeth into their correct alignment. This natural process allows the teeth to move over time.

Do braces hurt?
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Placing braces on your teeth is generally painless. Discomfort may arise 8-12 hours after placement, lasting a few days with each wire adjustment. We recommend soft foods, pain relievers, and a bit of indulgence in ice cream during the first week!

How long does orthodontic treatment take?
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Treatment duration varies depending on the complexity of your case. During your initial consultation, the doctor will provide an estimate, typically spanning 6-30 months.

How often are appointments required?
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Patients are usually seen every 6-12 weeks, though this may vary depending on treatment progress. Most patients find it convenient to schedule appointments within their busy routines.

Should I visit my family dentist while in braces?
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Yes, maintaining excellent oral hygiene is vital during orthodontic treatment. Regular dentist checkups and cleanings are crucial. Those struggling with oral hygiene may require more frequent dental visits.

Can braces interfere with sports or musical instruments?
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Braces don't hinder sports participation, however we do recommend mouthguards for contact sports. Playing musical instruments may require a brief adjustment period for patients with braces, while wax on brackets can be helpful.

Are there food restrictions with braces?
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Avoid hard, sticky, or overly sugary foods. These can damage braces, slow down progress, or bend wires. Sweet treats are acceptable as long as thorough brushing follows. Other than that, you’re good to go!

What happens when braces are removed?
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Braces are removed swiftly, usually without discomfort. We then remove the adhesive, provide retainers, and you're ready to showcase your stunning smile!

What are retainers and why are they important?
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Retainers maintain the results achieved with braces or Invisalign. There are various types of retainers, and wearing them is essential to preserve your smile as your teeth naturally change with age. We recommend wearing them indefinitely or as long as you wish to maintain your results.

What is the cost of treatment?
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Overall cost of orthodontic treatment varies by the complexity of the case, the type of appliance used, and the expected duration of treatment.

Treatment costs typically range from [$xx – $xx]. At your initial visit, you will get a complimentary exam with images and receive treatment options that are customized for you. At this time, you will also be presented with cost and payment options to suit your budget.

What are my payment options?
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We know treatment can be expensive, so we offer many options to make it work for your budget:

  • Option 1: You can PAY IN FULL with a discount of [x%]
  • Option 2: You can make a low down payment and pay the rest over [xx] months, with 0% financing
  • Option 3: We also offer 3rd party financing if you prefer a NO DOWN PAYMENT, interest-bearing payment plan over a longer period of time of up to 5 years. Some patients prefer the lower monthly payments. If you are interested in this option, we can send a link for you to apply before you arrive.

How can I take advantage of third-party financing?
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There are three ways to apply for financing:

  • We can send you a link before your appointment for pre-approval without a hit to your credit score. It takes less than 3 minutes to get pre-approved online.
  • You can go to our website and find the application link on our [insert name of page with hyperlink] and apply online.
  • Alternatively, you can apply in our office when you come in for your complimentary consultation. We’ll present you with different payment options and if you’d like to go with our 3rd party financing option, you can do so by scanning a QR code to apply and get pre-approved on the spot.

    Would applying for third-party financing affect my credit rating?
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    Our 3rd party financing partner is able to pre-qualify applicants by pulling their credit information (a soft-credit pull) that will not affect the applicant’s credit score. If the applicant chooses to proceed, only then does it become a hard credit inquiry. If the applicant elects not to proceed, this prequalification will expire after 30 days.