Elliot R. Storm, D.D.S.
Practice Limited to Orthodontics
7-11 South Broadway
White Plains, NY 10601
When is the Best Time to Begin Orthodontic Treatment?
Though an orthodontist can enhance a smile at any age, The American Association of Orthodontists recommends that the initial orthodontic evaluation should occur at the first sign of orthodontic problems or no later than age 7. At this early age, orthodontic treatment may not be necessary, but vigilant examination can anticipate the most advantageous time to begin treatment. Dr. Storm is most conservative when determining the timing of treatment. Dr. Storm believes in the adage, “minimum treatment for maximum result”.
The first permanent teeth have usually erupted by age 7 and cross bites, crowding, missing permanent teeth, and other problems can be evaluated. With early treatment, the orthodontist can guide the growth of the jaw and guide incoming permanent teeth. Early treatment can also regulate the width of the upper and lower dental arches, gain space for permanent teeth, avoid the need for permanent tooth extractions, reduce likelihood of impacted permanent teeth, correct thumb sucking and eliminate abnormal swallowing or speech problems. Jaw growth affects orthodontic treatment, usually favorably, but some times unfavorable. When and how much growth will occur is completely unpredictable. Dr. Storm relies on his 20+ years of experience and his earlier 7+ years as a general dentist to help in determining these factors.
In other words, early treatment can simplify, reduce or eliminate later treatment. In order to design a treatment plan, Dr. Storm uses his experience to understand the growth and development patterns, and the known effects of the chosen treatment modality.
Orthodontic treatment can be successful at any age, and adults especially appreciate the benefits of a beautiful smile. Approximately 25% of our patients are adults over 21. Jaw surgery may be required for adult orthodontic patients because their jaws are no longer growing. Adults my have experienced some breakdown or loss of their teeth and bone that supports the teeth and may require periodontal treatment before, during and /or after orthodontic treatment. Bone loss can also limit the amount and direction of tooth movement that is advisable. Having been in practice as an orthodontics specialist for more than 20 years in Westchester, Dr. Storm has a close relationship with many local periodontists, oral surgeons and other specialists and will be able to coordinate treatment in a seamless manner for the patient.
Dr. Storm is on the forefront of advanced options for orthodontic treatment. He was one of the first in Westchester to implement mini-implants (temporary anchorage devices) as an option for some patients who otherwise would not be a candidate for orthodontia or who would have less than optimal results. If you are an adult candidate for orthodontic treatment, Dr. Storm will work closely with your regular dentist and any other specialists that may be required in order to achieve the best result possible.
Your First Visit
Your First visit to Dr. Storm will be very straightforward and easy. We will be asking you to complete a medical/dental questionnaire upon your arrival. You will then be introduced to Dr. Storm, who will then conduct a clinical orthodontic examination and will discuss his findings in detail with you.
Dr. Storm will be able to inform you if orthodontic treatment is required at this time or in the future and answer any questions you may have. Our goal is to have you leave our office informed and comfortable with the new information you have been given.
We appreciate you are probably hearing about orthodontics for the first time, so we have allowed ample time to answer all the questions you may have, so please feel free take your time when discussing treatment options with Dr. Storm
If, after the clinical exam, Dr. Storm does not feel treatment is recommended at this time, we may decide to schedule an observation appointment for a later date, a recall appointment. The recall appointment is usually a quick appointment to check dental development and to determine if the patient is ready to commence orthodontic treatment.
If treatment is recommended, a comprehensive diagnostic evaluation will be necessary. Comprehensive orthodontic records include diagnostic intra/extra-oral photographs, two special x-rays (panoramic and cephalometric) and diagnostic casts/study models. Dr. Storm will analyze the records to determine a custom treatment plan for each patient.
Dr. Storm will discuss, in detail his findings from the comprehensive orthodontic diagnostic evaluation. This will include the treatment options, timing and required appointments. We will then discuss payment/financing options. Of course, we will do all the insurance paperwork necessary to get your coverage, if you have any.
How Orthodontic Treatment Works
Orthodontic appliances can be made of metal, ceramic or plastic. The may be removable or they may be fixed to the teeth and/or bone. By placing constant, gentle force in a carefully controlled direction, these appliances slowly move teeth to a corrected position.
This a great time for orthodontic treatment! Gone are the days when a metal band was placed on each tooth. We offer mini-metal brackets, clear ceramic brackets, tooth colored ceramic brackets, “invisible” removable aligners, and other appliance options. You can choose the color of the elastic ties that hold the wire in the brackets each month, changing with the seasons, sports activities, etc. The wires we use are much less noticeable than they used to be and are of the latest materials to move teeth faster and with less discomfort.
Duration of Treatment
Treatment time typically ranges from one to two years, depending on the growth of the patient’s jaws and face and the severity of the problem. Patients grow at different rates and will respond differently to orthodontic treatment, therefore, the time to completion may differ from the original estimate. The patient’s diligent use of any prescribed appliances is an important factor in achieving the most efficient treatment.