One of the first steps in your orthodontic treatment will involve making impressions of your teeth. This will ensure that your brackets will fit and keep your treatment on schedule. 

What is the process?

Your orthodontist will fill a tray with a substance called alginate and place it over your teeth. Alignate is a powder mixed with water that has a cake-batter-like consistency. The tray is kept in the mouth until the substance has hardened, and the process will need to be performed for both sets of teeth. After the impressions have been made, your orthodontist will make a stone or plaster mold in order to fabricate your orthodontic braces.

Will it be painful?

There is little to no pain involved when an impression is being made, but patients often worry that they will swallow the alginate. This is unlikely. 

On his blog, West Virginia orthodontist Dr. Joseph Thompson offers the following tips for adults and children who are concerned about impressions: 

  • Breathe through your nose and not through your mouth
  • Don't try to take the tray out of your mouth. This could ruin the impression, and you will have to start the process all over again
  • Relax and try not to be nervous
  • Tell your orthodontist in advance if you have a hyperactive gag reflex
  • Try not to swallow, as it can cause gagging

If you're interested in having the smile that you've always wanted, you first need to contact a New York City orthodontist. Dr. Tanya Vaysman and the knowledgeable staff at Upper Eastside Orthodontists, would be happy to meet with you and calm any jitters that you may have. 

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