Centreville Family Dentistry


664 E Main St, Centreville, MI

Frequently Asked Questions

ALF Therapy Frequently Asked Questions

Who is a Candidate for ALF Therapy?

- ALF Therapy is suitable for both children and adults with various dental and health issues.

- Growing children who need prevention of malocclusion and crooked teeth or early correction to promote proper growth and development of face and body

- Anybody who wants to improve tooth alignment, both for function and aesthetics

- Patients with previous orthodontic treatment that included tooth extractions and/or headgear

- Children and Young Adults with behavioral disorders, including ASD/ADD/ADHD and emotional imbalances

- Individuals who have experienced severe physical trauma or any head/neck injury

- Patients who have experienced or suffer from TMJ/TMD or facial joint inflammation

- Patients who snore and/or suffer from obstructive sleep apnea

How Long Does My Child Have To Wear An ALF Appliance For?

Treatment duration and technique vary between patients according to individual needs. In general, treatment time ranges anywhere from 1-3 years with the ALF worn all the time. They are hardly visible from the outside and therefore interfere very little with appearance.

Will My Child Need Braces / Invisalign / SureSmile After Treatment?

Some children will need a secondary phase of orthodontic correction. This depends on each person’s unique needs. In a nutshell, the earlier we start the treatment and correction, the need for braces or clear aligners will be either eliminated or greatly reduced. Please inquire with our doctors.

Are There Any Home Care Instructions For ALF?

- It is important to avoid foods that are sticky such as soft taffy candy, caramel, gum, or fruit leather.

- Special attention needs to be given to diet and oral hygiene since food will get caught between the wire and your teeth. At your ALF appointment, we will show you how to maintain good oral hygiene with the ALF in place. When flossing, pull the floss thread through each space, not up and down. The use of gum stimulators and an oral irrigator are recommended to make home care much easier.

How Long Will It Take To Get Used To The ALF Appliance?

Generally, it takes about 2 to 3 days to adjust to the appliance. Speech may be affected in the beginning as your tongue gets used to it. Reading out loud will speed up this adjustment period.

Will I Need Other Treatment Or Therapies?

To assist with the success of the ALF treatment, our doctors often recommend coordinated treatment with Osteopaths, Physical Therapists, Myofunctional Therapists, and Chiropractors. ALF orthodontic therapy was developed with Osteopaths and Myofunctional Therapy as well as other treatment modalities. These therapists are recommended as needed during the course of treatment. Please let us know if you are currently working with any other provider so that the doctors can coordinate and discuss your care.

What Age Can My Child Start ALF Therapy?

Very young children can start ALF therapy, and each child is unique. Please inquire with Dr. Libby during your free in-person consult visit.

How Much Does ALF Therapy Cost?

Please take a look at our investment / financing webpage here.

Dental insurance typically doesn't cover ALF Therapy, but its long-term benefits will outweigh the investment.

How is ALF Therapy Different Than Other Techniques?

- ALF Therapy's success lies in its unique and well-researched design.

- It has extensive support from the osteopathic medical community.

- It's distinguished by its holistic approach to oral and overall health.

Why Isn't Every Dentist and Orthodontist an ALF Therapy Provider?

- Some may lack understanding or experience with ALF Therapy.

- ALF Therapy providers prioritize exploring the interconnectedness of the body.

- Traditional techniques are more familiar to some practitioners.

Why is There Such a Demand for ALF Therapy?

- Patients seek a health-conscious approach to healthcare.

- ALF Therapy empowers patients by considering the whole person.

- Highly trained ALF Therapy providers offer comprehensive care.

Is the ALF Something New?

- The ALF was developed in the early 1980s and has evolved over time.

- It offers multiple customizable designs to address individual patient needs.

- Dr. Darick Nordstrom is the original creator of the ALF family of appliances, with decades of dedication and support from the ALF InterFACE organization.

Myofunctional Therapy Frequently Asked Questions

What Does Myofunctional Therapy / MyoBrace Treat?

- Bite issues

- Bruxism (teeth grinding) at night

- Crooked teeth

- Optimal facial development for children

- Sleep breathing issues

- TMJ issues

- Thumb and finger sucking habits

- A routine habit of resting with the lips apart

- A forward resting posture of the tongue between or against the teeth

- Tongue thrust

What Is Myofunctional Therapy Like?

- Therapy is individualized to help the patient retrain patterns of muscle function, and to create and maintain a balanced orofacial environment.

- Therapy sessions are tailored to each patient and our doctors will prescribe the proper therapy.

- The sessions can be combined with Appliance or Orthodontic appointments.

- It is a one on one session.

What Are The Benefits Of Myofunctional Therapy?

In addition to straightening teeth and correcting oral habits and underlying causes of misaligned teeth, Myofunctional Therapy offers these advantages:

- Better overall health through healthier jaw joints, healthier facial muscles, and larger, stronger airways

- Faster treatment timeframes

- Promoting Nasal Breathing

- Stabilized bite pattern, which reduces the chance for teeth to shift back into misalignment

- Balanced, supportive, and relaxed tongue, lips and jaw postures. This helps in growth and development of the structures of the mouth and face.

General Appliance Frequently Asked Questions

How Old Does My Child Need To Be?

- Myomunchee can be used as early as one and a half years old.

- Myobrace treatment may be started between 5-10 years old. The best and most stable results are often achieved early while the child is still growing.

What Issues Can An Appliance Treat?

These are some of the issues for which we might recommend oral appliance treatment:

- Bite issues

- Teeth grinding at night

- Misaligned teeth

- Sleep breathing issues or mouth breathing

- TMJ issues

- Oral habits like thumb sucking or pacifier use

- Delayed tooth eruption

- Atypical swallow patterns

What Are Some Benefits Of Appliances?

- Straighten teeth and correct oral habits and root causes of misaligned teeth

- Promote optimal facial development, muscular habits, and posture for children

- Improved breathing and sleep

- Healthier jaw joint (TMJ)

- Fewer allergies

- Correct oral habits and root causes of misaligned teeth

- Strengthen lips, tongue, and muscles of the mouth and jaw

- Encourage nasal breathing.

Tongue Tie, Lip Tie, Cheek Tie Frequently Asked Questions

What is Tongue Tie?

Tongue tie refers to a condition where the frenum, a membrane connecting the tongue to the floor of the mouth, restricts the tongue's movement.

What Problems Can Arise Due to Tongue Tie?

Tongue tie can immediately lead to breastfeeding difficulties in infants as they struggle to position their tongues correctly. Additionally, it can result in lifelong challenges such as speech impediments in children and adults. It may also hinder effective tongue cleaning, increasing the risk of cavities. Tongue tie can contribute to orthodontic needs by affecting the development of the dental arch, potentially leading to breathing and jaw issues in adulthood. It might even impact the stability of dentures.

How Is Tongue Tie Diagnosed?

Health professionals working with your baby, including doctors, lactation consultants, or dentists, can diagnose tongue tie. Often, functional problems prompt an examination of the tongue.

How Is Tongue Tie Treated?

Tongue tie is typically treated with a procedure called frenectomy or frenotomy, involving the removal of the restrictive frenum. While it was traditionally done with scissors or a scalpel, today, lasers are the preferred tool due to their precision, speed, and reduced discomfort and surgical risks.

Does a Tongue Tie Release Hurt?

The procedure is associated with mild discomfort. You can reduce your child's discomfort by administering a dose of acetaminophen (children's Tylenol) before the procedure. The procedure typically takes about three minutes to perform, and your child will start feeling better immediately. For more information, refer to "What to expect before, during, and after tongue tie revision."

Are Stretches Necessary After a Tongue Tie Release?

Yes, stretches are essential to prevent the treated areas from healing together, potentially causing a more severe tongue tie. These stretches should be performed for three to four weeks.

Are Stitches Used After a Tongue Tie Release?

Stitches are not generally required for infants, as their wounds are smaller and usually do not need them. Older patients may need stitches to aid in closing larger wounds, depending on the degree of tie that needs to be removed. During your consultation, we can provide guidance on whether stitches are necessary.

Are There Risks Associated With Tongue Tie Release?

While no procedure is entirely without risks, the risks associated with tongue tie release are relatively minor. There is a slight risk of infection, increased discomfort, numbness, the development of restrictive scar tissue, or ulceration. However, these complications are uncommon to rare.

What is the Treatment for Tongue-Ties?

The treatment for tongue-ties is a tongue tie release, also known as frenectomy. This procedure involves using a dental laser, such as the LightScapel CO2 soft tissue laser, to release the tongue-tie. Local anesthesia is administered to minimize discomfort during the fast procedure. There is typically no significant aftercare required, except for monitoring the procedure site to prevent infection.

Can Tongue-Ties Grow Back?

No, tongue-ties do not grow back. While extremely rare, in some cases, they may reattach themselves, but this occurrence is highly unlikely.

When is a Tongue-Tie Revision Necessary?

A tongue-tie revision is necessary when the limited range of tongue motion is causing functional issues. If you are unsure whether a revision is needed for you or your child, we recommend scheduling a consultation with us to learn more.

What Happens After the Procedure?

After the procedure, babies can usually resume breastfeeding within an hour. For older children or adults who undergo the procedure, additional treatments may be necessary to address any damage caused by an untreated tongue-tie. Our dentists will discuss recommendations during your consultation.

Complete the Short 30-Second Survey Below to Book A Free Consult With Dr. Libby

This Office Does Not Participate With Medicaid

Contact Details *

If You Are Ready to Set Up Your Free Consult, Please Complete the Following Form So We May Contact You for Scheduling

By clicking submit I agree to terms & conditions provided by Centreville Family Dentistry - Growth & Ortho. By providing my phone number, I agree to receive text messages or be contacted through phone/email about my dental needs.