Fast Trax Orthodontics


What Makes Fast Trax Orthodontics Different

Fast – Treatment at Fast Trax can usually be completed with twelve months of brackets on your teeth. This means less time away from work or school.

Affordable – Less treatment time means less overhead and the savings is passed on to you. Faster doesn’t always mean more expensive.

Safe – Fast Trax uses a non extraction, light force, low friction, bioeffecient technique that evidenced based research declares the safest system available. (AAO Journal – 2001)

Technology – Fast Trax is committed to using the most advanced technology available. From the brackets on your teeth to the machine that takes your x-ray, we strive to use the finest technology available for your care.

A Note from Dr. Norton

Some families’ decisions are driven by costs, location, and personality of the practitioner and staff. These factors are very legitimate in the decision process. I would like to put forth my philosophy of treatment, backed by scientific research whenever possible, to aid in your decision process. I want to explain how our treatment is fast, affordable, safe and technologically advanced.

Orthodontics has become the largest single item of normal expense that parents can expect to encounter in raising a child prior to college (United States Health and Human Services Department 1999). Since this is a large family expense, I believe you should be highly informed to make your decision. Your decision also affects the future health and appearance of your child. For this reason, I have put together some information that explains how I use multiple modalities to give my patients a beautiful smile while producing the most pleasing facial appearance genetically possible.

I like to consider myself a functional jaw orthopedist (bone moving) with knowledge of orthotropics (bone growing). This means that I treat to the face. I will shy away from treatment I think will damage the beauty of the face such as extractions and headgear. Instead, I provide therapy that will enhance the facial features such as expansion, posture and airway. As an orthotropist, I am concerned about the growth of the face in to it’s genetically most desirable position. I fit my orthodontics (straight teeth) into this equation as a third component. I do not let my orthodontics cause harm to the esthetics of a face. Some call this technique full face orthodontics. Let me explain some differences you might find at Fast Trax over traditional offices you may visit. Remember both techniques described are legitimate treatments. I describe the differences for your consideration in making a decision. Some traditional offices incorporate many of the modalities described narrowing the difference between approaches.


The Difference in Orthodontic Care

Orthodontic techniques fall broadly into two groups that reflect the differing views about the cause of the irregularity of the teeth. Practitioners of Traditional Treatment hold the view that the dimensions of the jaws are largely predetermined at birth. As a result they extract teeth in crowded arches and use ‘traditional’ fixed appliances to align the teeth within the existing dimensions of the jaws, resorting to orthognathic surgery if the disproportion is severe. A second group of orthodontists believe that over the last two hundred years industrial pollution, diet, use of pacifiers/baby bottles and lack of breastfeeding have caused narrowing of the upper jaw. This results in malocclusions that cannot be found in jaws over two hundred years old. This second group use a combination of ‘Expansion’ appliances to widen narrow jaws, and ‘Functional’ appliances to reduce inter-arch differences. This approach is called ‘Dentofacial Orthopedics’ meaning ‘moving bone’ or ‘Orthotropics’ meaning ‘growth guidance’.

In my estimation, ‘Traditional Treatment’ tends to be empirical (based on observed experience rather than scientific principles) and treats the symptoms of malocclusion rather than the cause. Possibly because of this, its long-term success record is less certain. Dentofacial Orthopedics and Orthotropics may have greater potential for a long-term correction but are very dependent on the cooperation of the patient which makes them unpopular with traditional orthodontists. It takes a special dentist-patient relationship to produce good patient compliance. Both groups accept that the teeth and their supporting bone are in a position of balance between the soft tissues (lips, cheeks, tongue) and are aware that adverse oral posture is likely to be associated with disruption of growth. Unfortunately oral posture is difficult to measure, diagnose or treat, which may be why few ‘Traditional’ orthodontists try to correct it.

rthotropists go to great efforts to correct the affects of the environmental problems by means of appliances that strengthen the jaw muscles and train the patients to keep their mouths closed in the expectation that this will encourage forward growth of the face instead of the more usual downward or vertical growth. They claim that if this is achieved while the child is young, they will grow up with a good looking face and at least 28 teeth in good alignment. Many clinicians use a mix of the two systems but there is concern that the treatment objectives may sometimes conflict.

Differences between General Dentist Practicing Orthodontics Exclusively and Orthodontist

An orthodontist and a general dentist practicing orthodontics, are both dentists. They are both given the same license to practice. There is no additional special certificate required to be able to practice orthodontics. The two doctors are differentiated in how they learn orthodontics. An orthodontist is awarded a postgraduate degree after taking two years or more of orthodontic study at a dental school sanctioned by the ADA. They usually have made very good grades in dental school in order to secure this competitive internship, and should be admired for their hard work. A general dentist can obtain comprehensive orthodontic knowledge by taking postgraduate courses, most of which are sanctioned by the ADA. Nevertheless, general dentists should not do orthodontics if they have not taken enough postgraduate courses to adequately treat cases. (Source: American Dental Association, American Association of Orthodontists) Nowhere in the field of dentistry is there more controversy than in orthodontics. Currently, some surveys state that over fifty percent of the orthodontic therapy in the United States is provided by general dentists. What techniques should be used and who should be doing it are areas that can confuse a patient in the process of deciding which office to go to. At Fast Trax Orthodontics, Dr. Norton is a general dentist practicing orthodontics exclusively. We have a policy of not criticizing another dentist or technique. It is not necessary. We will provide you with information about us, our philosophy, and techniques. After many years of practicing orthodontics we feel very confident about what we can do and about our final results. Hundreds of satisfied patients speak volumes as to whether or not high quality prevails with Dr. Norton’s techniques at Fast Trax Orthodontics. We therefore let our history of patient satisfaction speak for itself.

What Makes Us Different Technically

The balance of the face and the airway are respected at Fast Trax Orthodontics with straight teeth being a third part of the overall treatment goal. Primary (baby) teeth are not extracted to alleviate crowding and jaws are developed to accommodate the teeth. Permanent teeth are not extracted to alleviate crowding for children and adolescents and only in very rare cases for adults. Instead, space is made for the teeth. (Wisdom teeth are a separate, unrelated issue.) We believe a broad smile is more attractive, and expansion treatment to accommodate the teeth helps keep the airway from being compromised. Headgears are NEVER used to push the upper teeth back and upper teeth are almost never too far forward relative to the rest of the face! It's the lower jaw that is too far back making the upper teeth appear to be too far forward! Treatment for children and adolescents is done as early as possible to achieve the best result in the shortest amount of time. Parents are busy and kids don't want or need to be in braces longer than necessary! Malocclusions (crooked teeth) and unfavorable facial development are caused by altered oral posture (the way the tongue, teeth, and lips are held at rest and in action). Because breathing through the mouth rather than the nose is frequently the cause of altered oral posture, we try to find the reason someone is a mouthbreather and change the pattern to nosebreathing. In turn, this supports proper dental and facial development and stability of the orthodontic result. Deviant swallowing is the hallmark of malocclusion, and the nemesis of the functional orthodontist. Our office works well with Oral Motor Therapists who correct habits leading to your bad bite. Based on the research Dr. Norton has studied, impacted cuspids (eye teeth that are in the roof of the mouth and do not erupt) can usually be prevented. Impacted cuspids naturally occur in 2-3% of the population - including Shaquille O'Neal! It is critical to see children long before all the permanent teeth are in if we are to prevent this serious problem. (Canine Impaction Identified Early with Panoramic Radiographs - American Dental Association Journal, March, 1982)
Adults who had extractions for orthodontics can often have improved facial balance and an improved airway by orthodontically reopening the spaces and replacing the extracted teeth. This often also helps reduce headaches and symptoms from TMJ.

Pros and Cons of Differing Treatment

Braces with and without Extractions “Traditional Treatment”

Advantages. Will reliably achieve good alignment of the teeth within 18 to 30 months. They are widely available. Board Specialist Orthodontists are University trained. Treatment can be delayed until twelve or fourteen.

Disadvantages. They tend to involve extractions to alleviate crowding. They usually retract the upper jaw to match the lower and this tends to increase the vertical growth of the face. This may be barley noticeable. In cases where the face is already too long the damage may be severe. The teeth often tend to re-crowd in the years following treatment unless they are held straight indefinitely with retainers. The braces cause damage to the roots and enamel of the teeth but these are usually considered acceptable. Some clinicians believe that patients are subsequently liable to headaches, snoring/sleep apnea and joint damage when extractions are employed, but there is conflicting evidence about this.

Functional Jaw Orthopedics

Advantages. Brings the lower jaw forward and widens the upper jaw. Reduces the number of extractions. Causes less damage to the teeth. Treatment can be started earlier if required.

Disadvantages. Usually requires braces to gain the final alignment but causes less damage to the teeth and face provided the treatment is started early. Takes back the upper jaw slightly, and lengthens the face especially if crowding is severe. Teeth often require holding straight afterwards. Patient compliance is mandatory. In the absence of patient compliance, treatment slows down considerably.

Growth Guidance, (Orthotropics).

Advantages. Takes both jaws forward. This should produce an improvement in facial appearance. Brackets and extractions only required in severe cases started late. Short treatment period in mild cases. Almost no damage to the teeth. Teeth do not need holding straight after the patient has corrected their mouth posture. The facial improvements achieved by Orthotropics have not been matched by any other technique.

Disadvantages. More difficult for the operator. The teeth are not as perfectly aligned at the end of treatment but usually improve subsequently (the reverse of braces). Treatment best started before eight (earlier in severe cases). Requires high levels of cooperation from the patient who must wear inconvenient appliances for long periods and learn to keep their mouth closed and swallow correctly. If patient can not achieve this, night time wear may last several years. However it is a ‘fail safe’ option and even a slight improvement of mouth posture is likely to provide a better long-term result than braces.

Can it avoid the need for surgery? Yes often. Patients who have already been told by traditional orthodontists that they will have to have their jaws cut, have a strong incentive to co-operate and the success rate of  orthotropics and dento-facial orthopedics in these circumstances, is good even if some of them are considerably older. However they are treated, it is still important that patients are able to correct their mouth posture, and failing this many will relapse. Some cases involving hyper growth of the lower jaw are only corrected by surgical approaches no matter the technique used.


McKinney Adult Braces, McKinney Childrens Braces, Adult Orthodontics McKinney

McKinney Adult Braces, McKinney Childrens Braces, Adult Orthodontics McKinney

Age seventeen and a half and nine months later, she was treated with orthotropics.

She had been told that cutting her jaws was the only possible treatment.
Even with conventional surgical cases it is still important that the patients are able to correct their mouth posture, and failing this about 30% will suffer long term relapse.

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