Frequently Asked Questions

At Custom Orthodontics: Dr. Thomas Herberger, Inc., we take the time to educate our patients on all of their available treatment options. It’s important that all of our patients understand their dental problems and the best course of action for treating it. If you have a question about braces, Invisalign or any other orthodontic treatment that isn’t addressed below, please don’t hesitate to contact us. Our caring staff is happy to help you in any way they can!

Why is orthodontic treatment important?

A beautiful smile and straighter teeth are just a few of many benefits of orthodontic treatment. It can reduce one’s risk for tooth decay, gum disease, chewing and biting difficulties, speech impairments, tooth loss and other dental problems. Proper and timely orthodontic care can prevent costly repairs in the future and lead to optimal oral health.

Watch Our Video

At what age should orthodontic treatment occur?

The American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) recommends that all kids receive an orthodontic checkup by the age of 7. Early screenings can help prevent extensive orthodontic treatments in the future. Even if you don’t believe your child requires orthodontic care, it’s still beneficial to have an orthodontist examine how your child’s teeth and jaw are developing. Every person is different, some need early treatment some can wait for more teeth to grow in. Dr. Herberger wants to see his patients early to have the opportunity to pick the best time to start orthodontic treatment.

Am I too old for braces or to see an orthodontist?

No one is too old for braces. Custom Orthodontics: Dr. Thomas Herberger, Inc. is experienced in treating and creating custom braces for both children and adults. Many adults today are correcting dental problems that weren’t treated when they were younger. We have the tools necessary to help adults achieve the perfect smile they’ve always wanted. Dr. Herberger’s oldest patient started when she was in her 70’s.

How much does visiting an orthodontist cost?

The cost of seeing an orthodontist varies on the type of treatment. Most dental insurance plans today include orthodontic benefits, making the cost more affordable than ever. Our staff is happy to address any financial concerns or questions you may have. We always offer a free consult to help you find out what we can do to give you that great smile we all want.

What can I expect from my initial consultation?

Custom Orthodontics is proud to offer potential patients a free consultation. Our team will take the time to visually assess your current jaw and tooth position and give you an estimate of time and costs. We will also review your insurance and start the process to determine your benefits (usually within a few minutes).

Are there any alternatives to braces?

While there aren’t many devices that produce the same results as braces do, there are a few types of braces that patients can choose from based on their needs and style. There are clear or tooth-colored braces, metal braces, as well as Invisalign clear aligners. Additionally, there are other forms of removable dental appliances that can help align teeth.

What is “Phase I” (early) treatment?

Phase I treatment, also known as early intervention, refers to orthodontic treatment that’s given before a child has all of their permanent, or adult, teeth. This treatment usually occurs between ages 7 and 10 and is designed to fix problems that are easily corrected at a young age. Dr. Herberger will consider early treatment when a skeletal problem exists and a longer treatment is needed to influence a patient’s growth to help improve the underlying skeletal problem.

How long are braces worn for?

On average, most people wear braces for 1 to 3 years. However, the timetable varies greatly from patient to patient because of growth and the severity of the dental problem. Key to treatment staying on time is how well the patient maintains their oral hygiene, avoids damaging foods and keeps to all of their follow-up appointments. It is a TEAM effort.

Will braces cause constant pain and discomfort?

Braces may be uncomfortable and hurt for a couple of days following each monthly adjustment but after a few months, patients hardly notice their braces at all.

What do I do in case of an emergency?

If you are experiencing a dental emergency or have a problem with your braces, please contact our office right away at (440) 695-0092 or the emergency listed on all appointment cards. Dr. Herberger will make every effort to see you promptly and reduce any pain and discomfort.

What can I eat with braces on?

First, what you can’t have: no chewing gum of any kind and no hard or sticky candy. You can eat most foods with braces but most will have to be cut or broken into bite size pieces and eaten slowly. Dr. Herberger and his staff will go over what foods to avoid and eat differently.