1. Why select an Orthodontist ?


Orthodontists are dental specialists who diagnose, prevent and treat dental and jaw growth irregularities. They receive an additional three years of post-graduate specialised education to learn the proper way to align and straighten your teeth. Orthodontists have in-depth knowledge of dental and jaw growth development which is crucial in providing a holistic orthodontic treatment. Only those successfully complete this formal training are registered as Orthodontic Specialist (Orthodontists) with Singapore Dental Council.

2. Why is orthodontic treatment so important ?

Orthodontic treatment creates a better bite, making teeth fit better and reduces the risk of future and potentially costly dental problems. Crooked and crowded teeth are hard to clean and maintain. Furthermore, a bad bite can cause the tooth to wear abnormally, difficulty in chewing and/or speaking. If left untreated, many problems simply progress and become worse.

3. What causes orthodontic problems?

Most orthodontic problem (malocclusion) are inherited. Examples of these genetic problems are crowding, spacing, protrusion, deep bite, extra or missing teeth, and some jaw growth problems. Other malocclusions are acquired as a result of thumb/finger sucking, dental diseases, accidents, the early or late loss of baby teeth, or other causes.

4. How long does treatment take?

Orthodontic treatment averages less than two years, but can range from one to three years depending on the complexity of the orthodontic problems.

5. How often will I need to come in for appointments?

Advances in today’s orthodontic material and technologies mean patients see the orthodontist only about once every four to six weeks during active treatment.

6. Does orthodontic treatment hurt?

New technologies and materials today have made orthodontic treatment more comfortable than ever. Discomfort, if any is short-lived, and can be managed using mild over-the-counter analgesics.

7. Why do I need retainer after removal of braces?

After the removal of braces, the orthodontic retention period begins. The retention period is extremely important in the stability of your teeth position. A period of time is required to allow the teeth to “settle” and stabilize in their new position. The soft tissue, supporting bone , the tongue and lip must adapt to the new dental alignment. Without proper retention, teeth can quickly move and slip back towards old position (relapse). Dr. Phan will discuss the retention strategy/options.

1. When should children get a check-up with an orthodontist?

The AAO (American Association of Orthodontists) and AOS (Association of Orthodontists of Singapore) recommends children get a check-up with an orthodontist at about the age of 7 or at the first recognition of orthodontic problem. Putting off a check-up with an orthodontist until a child has lost all baby teeth could be a disservice. If early interceptive treatment is in order, Dr. Phan may be able to achieve results that may not be possible once the face and jaw have finished growing.

2. What are the signs that my child’s bite is not right?

It is not always easy to tell whether your child has an orthodontic problem. Here are some clues that may indicate the need for orthodontic attention:


  • Early or late loss of baby teeth
  • Difficulty in chewing or biting
  • Thumb sucking and tongue thrusting
  • Crowded, misplaced or blocked out teeth
  • Jaws that are too forward or back
  • Biting the cheek or biting into the roof of the mouth (Deep bite)
  • Protruding teeth
  • Crossbite of front teeth/Crossbite of back teeth
  • An unbalanced facial appearance

1. I am an adult, is orthodontic treatment effective for me?

Yes. Age is not a consideration when it comes to orthodontic treatment. Healthy teeth can be moved successfully and safely at any age. Orthodontic treatment creates a better bite and decreases the risk of future dental problems regardless of age.

2. I am missing some teeth. Can orthodontic treatment improve my bite?

Whether you are planning to replace missing teeth or not, you will benefit from a consultation with an orthodontist. If replacements for missing teeth are planned, Dr. Phan can help to keep the necessary space open or redistribute/consolidate the space to facilitate the prosthetic work later. Dr. Phan will work with your dentist or dental specialist to achieve the best result.

3. I have been treated for gum disease. Can I have orthodontic treatment?

Yes, if your gum condition is treated and stable. Dr. Phan will consult your dentist and/or periodontist about the health of your gums.

4. Will orthodontic treatment fit my lifestyle?

Certainly. You can do almost anything during orthodontic treatment – sing, play a musical instrument, dine out, kiss and even have your picture taken. Some temporary adjustments will be necessary, but if you are like the vast majority of adult patients, you will adapt quickly.

1. How often should I clean my teeth and braces?

You must clean your teeth and gums after every meal or a snack. Use toothpaste when you brush as long as your work/school conditions allow, if not brush with water only then. If you cannot brush right away after a meal, be sure to at least rinse your mouth well thoroughly.

2. What should I do if the brackets or wire is broken?

Please call our clinic at 6397 2818 immediately so that we can arrange an appointment to repair it. Use the soft wax dispensed to cover the affected area first to reduce any irritation.

3. Why do I need to use elastics for my orthodontic treatment?

Elastic (rubber band) exert the proper amount of force to move teeth in the desired direction. In order for this force to be consistent, elastics must be worn at all time and changed as instructed. Treatment duration and outcome will be affected negatively if elastics are not worn well.


# Remove elastics only before your meals. Then put them back immediately after brushing your teeth, gums and braces.

# Always carry your elastics with you, so if one breaks you can replace it right away.