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Orthodontist in San Diego

What does an Orthodontist do?

An orthodontist focuses on treating dental and facial irregularities. Teeth that are crowded, have gaps, or otherwise abnormal can be distracting or embarrassing, but they can also cause dental and oral problems. Teeth that are grouped together or overlapping are harder to clean and prone to developing cavities.

Orthodontists employ a variety of techniques and devices to prevent or correct imperfections in the arrangement of your teeth and the positioning of your jaws. The most common corrective measure is braces, but braces can be combined with other treatments as needed.

Orthodontics and Dentistry – How They Differ.

While orthodontists and dentists both deal with oral health, that’s almost the extent of their similarities. Orthodontists are considered dentists, but require added education to specialize in orthodontia.

Dentists typically handle problems dealing with oral hygiene and treatments usually include fillings, root canals, crowns, veneers, and bridges. Meanwhile, orthodontists align teeth and correct your bite to fix cosmetic or medical problems. The most common form of correction by an orthodontist is braces, although many other devices may be appropriate, based upon need. Dentists and orthodontists often work closely together, and one may refer you to the other under certain circumstances.

Signs You May Need to See an Orthodontist.

When you have a toothache, you know it’s time to go see the dentist – but how do you know when to go see an orthodontist? There are an array of symptoms and conditions to look out for, including:

  • Visibly crowded, missing, or blocked teeth
  • Clicking or popping sounds when opening or closing the jaws
  • Jawbones that are visibly misshapen or disproportional
  • Teeth grinding, especially while asleep
  • Problems with biting or chewing because of misalignment
  • Excessive mouth breathing

Some people recommend taking your child to an orthodontist by the time they are seven. Some problems can be treated more easily when the patient is young, and the jaw is still malleable. By bringing your child in early, our orthodontist can use preventative measures to help your child’s teeth grow in straight and shape their jaw.

Procedures Performed by our Orthodontist

Braces are what orthodontists are most known for, but they use other devices either separately or in conjunction with braces to achieve beautiful teeth.

Most other devices used by orthodontists are used to modify the shape of the jaw, including headgear, maxillary expansion devices, bionator, or Herbst.

A maxillary, or upper jaw expansion device sits in the roof of your mouth and gradually makes the upper jaw wider or narrower over the course of a few months. Meanwhile, headgear or Herbst appliances can reduce retrusion of the lower jaw, which is when the bottom jaw sits too far behind the top jaw. Aligning the jaws can fix problems with chewing or biting and reduce pain when opening your jaws.

At Soft Touch Dental in San Diego, we do everything we can to make your orthodontic experience a pleasant and pain-free. Modern advancements have led to devices that are less visible such as clear braces or Invisalign, and we will only advise you to undergo treatments that are vital to your overall oral hygiene and produce a more attractive smile.

Our Orthodontist

Dr. Fakhimi and the entire staff at Soft Touch Dental is passionate about helping you to look and feel your very best. When your teeth require correction with braces, Dr. Fakhimi can offer a myriad of options that will achieve your cosmetic and lifestyle goals with ease. There are a variety of materials to choose from for your braces, from traditional metal to clear plastic. Braces can help restore your smile and create a foundation for dental health for years to come.

In addition to his expertise and skill, Dr. Fakhimi possesses a warm, friendly demeanor that sets anxious patients at ease. He is especially liked by teenagers who may be apprehensive about getting braces for the first time. He often spends extra time in consultation, offering families the chance to ask as many questions as they like before deciding to embark on a treatment plan. Dr. Fakhimi is also adamant about providing adequate aftercare for every client. These are some of the reasons he is one of the most desired Orthodontists in San Diego.

Many orthodontic devices or treatments require some attention after they are installed. Some, like the maxillary expansion device, require some at-home care to continue toward your goals. Braces, for example, require follow-up appointments at our facility to adjust the wire and monitor your progress.

Most pain felt after receiving braces or another device can be managed with over-the-counter pain medication. Our orthodontists will walk you through each step of your treatment and ensure that you are comfortable.

If you would like to learn more about how braces can improve both the appearance and the structural integrity of your smile, please contact our San Diego offices today to schedule your free confidential consultation with Dr. Fakhimi.


Crooked teeth can cause problems for the patient, not only cosmetically, but functionally, in terms of throwing off the bite. Bite problems can result in sleep disorders, headaches, pain, and general discomfort, and should be corrected as early in life as possible. Braces can help correct teeth that are spaced too far apart, or too close together, and can augment the attractiveness of the smile.

The conventional braces are made of metal, either stainless steel or titanium, but can also be created from transparent plastic. Plastic braces are less noticeable, but may require longer treatment times than their metal counterparts. Braces consist of brackets, which are bonded to the tooth’s surface, the archwires that connect the brackets, and the elastic bands dentists use to stretch the brackets.

Children as young as 7 years of age may be eligible for braces. Early diagnosed dental issues can save a child from having to undergo more serious dental treatments later in life, such as extraction or surgery. Issues such as overcrowding, thumb sucking, speech problems and more can be treated and healed with proper care from an orthodontist.



Our Invisalign offers a convenient, attractive alternative to conventional metal braces. Each bracket is made of solid, transparent plastic that is gentle on the gums and cheeks. The braces are removable, making it easier to keep your teeth clean, enjoy all your favorite foods, and allowing you to attend important social events without wearing braces when necessary.

The Invisalign system is ideal for anyone suffering from gapped teeth, crooked teeth, overcrowded teeth, crossbite, overbite, or underbite. Teenagers and others who are keenly aware of the image they present to the public will be thrilled with Invisalign’s undetectable design. Invisalign has all the same benefits as normal braces, but without the cumbersome, unappealing features that can cause self-consciousness. Dr. Fakhimi's vast experience and results with Invisalign are why he is the San Diego Orthodontist you will want to choose.


Orthodontics FAQ

What is Orthodontics?

Orthodontics is a branch of dentistry that is primarily concerned with alignment and bite issues. Teeth that are improperly aligned or crowded are at higher risk of damage, as they are vulnerable to developing plaque, gum disease, and decay. By correcting the alignment of your teeth and jaw you are not only preserving the health of your teeth – you will be able to smile with confidence. Dr. Fakhimi is pleased to offer a number of options for orthodontics at Soft Touch Dental in San Diego.

What Can Orthodontics Correct?

Orthodontics can address a number of imperfections in the alignment of the teeth and the jaw. If you experience any of the following, orthodontic treatment can correct these misalignments and put you on the path to better oral health – and a more appealing smile.

  • Crowded or crooked teeth
  • Gaps in teeth
  • Overbite, underbite, or crossbite
  • An open bite in which your upper and lower jaw don’t meet properly
  • Improperly aligned midline (upper and lower teeth do not meet correctly)

How do I Know if I Need Orthodontics?

Dr. Fakhimi can evaluate your teeth and advise you about what treatment will be appropriate, whether Invisalign or traditional metal braces or other option. Straight teeth and a correct bite between upper and lower jaw are important aspects of your overall oral health.

What are the Types of Orthodontic Treatments?

At Soft Touch Dental, we offer several types of orthodontic treatments. The types of orthodontic treatments include braces, palate expanders, spacers used to maintain the distance between teeth while an adult tooth comes in, and other types of fixed appliances to treat and resolve tongue thrusting and thumb sucking. Removable orthodontia includes appliances like Invisalign, removable spacers, jaw spacers, lip or cheek bumpers designed to protect the lips and cheeks from metal brackets, headgear, and retainers.

How Early Can My Child be Treated with Orthodontia?

Addressing issues with your child’s teeth and bite at an early age can be important, as the jaw and gums are more flexible in the younger years. Adult teeth begin to come in around the age of six or seven. As your child’s teeth come in, any problems in alignment become visible. Using orthodontia to correct malocclusion should be planned early, particularly issues related to jaw alignment and palate size. Correcting these issues while your child is still growing can help avoid more aggressive treatments and procedures in the future.

How Can I Care for My Teeth While I Have Braces?

Caring for your teeth while you have fixed orthodontia is imperative to ensuring complete oral health both while you have these appliances, and after they are removed. In order to properly care for your teeth, you should brush twice daily with a toothpaste which contains fluoride (for children, speak with us about what toothpaste is safe for your child), floss after every meal to ensure you have removed any food particles or debris that become trapped on metal brackets or wires, and rinse with a fluoride rinse to help the enamel of your teeth remain strong. Brushing while you have orthodontia requires more work. It is advised that you spend about ten seconds brushing each tooth.

How What You Eat Affects the Health of Your Teeth

Your oral health is an important part of your overall body health. For patients with braces or other orthodontic treatment, diet matters. With metal braces, your diet will change to some degree. You will need to eat softer foods, and avoid chewy or hard, crunchy foods – and sugary foods. Drink plenty of water help to flush food debris that may have become lodged in your braces. With Invisalign, you have no eating restrictions, as the aligners are removed to eat or drink, after which you must brush your teeth, and then replace the aligner.

Is Fluoride Good for Your Teeth?

Fluoride is a naturally-occurring mineral that aids in the strength of your teeth. While your teeth are still forming, fluoride can help the tooth enamel become strong and hard. The enamel is the hard surface to protect your teeth from damage and decay. When your teeth have fully formed, fluoride helps the enamel to maintain a harder, stronger surface, which can protect your teeth from decay.

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