Spacers for Braces in Atlanta, GA
Are your teeth a bit too close together to wear orthodontic bands or to start braces right away? If so, orthodontic spacers can help. Patel & Womble Orthodontics in McDonough and Norcross, GA offers far more than just braces. Our board-certified orthodontists, Dr. Ruchir R. Patel and Dr. Brian A. Womble, can set you up with spacers for braces to help make the rest of your treatment a breeze.
What are Spacers for Braces?
Spacers are often referred to as orthodontic expanders or separators. The actual orthodontic spacer is a small ring that slips in between the back teeth. It “expands” or increases the space in between teeth so that a band can wrap around the tooth later. You will likely only need a spacer between the two back teeth on each side of your upper or lower arch.
Some people need spacers before they can get their braces put on, while others do not. Our orthodontic specialists can let you know during your consultation whether or not spacers are something that you will need.
Why are Spacers Necessary?
At Patel & Womble Orthodontics, our board-certified orthodontists Dr. Patel and Dr. Womble will be able to let you know if expanders are necessary to make your treatment a success. If your teeth are too close together at the start of your orthodontic treatment, then placing the bands for braces will likely be very uncomfortable or even difficult. Wearing an expander prior to placing the band can make the process much simpler and more comfortable.
How are Spacers Fitted?
A spacer is a small, flexible elastic ring. When stretched out, it can easily be slipped between teeth. After the tension on the ring is released, it expands and places a small amount of pressure against the adjacent teeth. It’s just enough pressure to encourage your teeth to move slightly apart from one another so that an orthodontic band can be slipped around one of the teeth.
Are Spacers Painful?
When your spacers are first placed between your teeth, you may feel a very small pinch, but in many cases, you will feel nothing at all. The light bit of pressure could cause a minimal amount of discomfort between the two teeth involved, similar to if a bit of food was stuck between them.
After placing your spacers, Dr. Patel or Dr. Womble will give you specific care instructions so that you can get the most out of them with the least amount of irritation.
How is Discomfort Managed?
Your teeth will likely adjust to the spacers within a day or two. An over-the-counter pain reliever can be taken if necessary. It’s very important not to dislodge your spacers with floss or a toothpick before it is time for them to be removed. Otherwise, you may delay your treatment time by needing to have them replaced.
Is Special Care Needed When Wearing Spacers?
- Avoid sticky or hard foods
- Eat soft foods for a few days
- Take an over-the-counter pain reliever for any brief discomfort
- Avoid clenching your teeth
- Don’t floss the area around the spacer
- Take care when brushing around your spacers
Will Spacers be Replaced by Bands?
Yes. Spacers are used to create just a bit of room between the back teeth so that an orthodontic band can be slipped right over one of the teeth. If the area is too tight, we may need to have you wear the spacers for a bit longer or go up another size.
How are Spacers Removed?
When your teeth respond successfully, the expanders may fall out on their own. At this point, you’ll need to schedule a visit to find out whether your teeth are ready for new spacers or the orthodontic band. If the spacers need to be taken out, our orthodontist will do so at the time your bands are being installed.
The Cost of Orthodontic Expanders in Atlanta, GA
The cost of expanders is included in your overall cost of braces. There is usually no extra fee for having spacers placed, as long as you do not purposefully remove them between visits. After all, if your teeth are crowded together, getting spacers for braces is the only option for successful treatment.
Our Atlanta office is open six days a week, including Saturdays. Patel & Womble Orthodontics in McDonough and Norcross provides comprehensive orthodontic care, including spacers for braces. To help you cover the cost of your treatment, we offer OrthoFi® and CareCredit® dental financing. If you are a resident of McDonough, Norcross or the surrounding Atlanta area, contact us today to schedule a consultation with our board-certified orthodontists, Dr. Ruchir R. Patel and Dr. Brian A. Womble.