WHAT IS ORTHODONTIC TREATMENT?
Orthodontic treatment is a way of straightening or moving (aligning) teeth, to improve the appearance of the teeth and how they work. It can also help to look after the long-term health of your teeth, gums and jaw joints, by spreading the biting pressure over all your teeth.
WHY SHOULD I HAVE ORTHODONTIC TREATMENT?
- An attractive smile is just one of the benefits of orthodontic treatment.
- Psychological benefits, improved self-esteem and increased confidence especially if teasing at school is a problem for your child during the critical development years.
- Easier to bite and chew food i.e. Improved function.
- Reduce the risk of trauma or injury to protruded front teeth.
- Improved force distribution and wear patterns on the teeth.
- Guide permanent teeth into a more favourable position if early treatment is indicated.
- Occasional improvements in speech.
- Facilitate oral hygiene and avoid having to cope with food getting caught between the teeth: Straight teeth make it easier for you and your dental team to keep them clean.
- Better long-term health of teeth and gums: If you ever need a filling, crown, or bridge, your dentist can usually do better restorations if the teeth are aligned properly.
- Cost Benefits: Improvement in overall health frequently results in decreased dental problems later resulting in lower dental care costs, in total, over lifetime.
WHAT IS THE IDEAL AGE TO UNDERGO ORTHODONTIC TREATMENT?
People of any age can benefit from orthodontic treatment.
Ages 2 to 3 – In very rare cases, children as young as 2 or 3 with extremely distorted bites may need to begin treatment.
Ages 5 to 7 – This is the ideal time to counsel children to stop bad habits, such as thumb-sucking and tongue-thrusting. Although most malocclusions are hereditary, habits can make problems worse if they continue after permanent teeth have come in.
Ages 6 to 8 – This is the time to correct crossbite (when teeth overlap each other, most commonly when the upper teeth bite inside the lower teeth, toward the tongue). This condition makes it difficult for children to bite and chew properly.
Ages 8 to 10 – This is the target age range for correcting most other jaw problems connected with overbites, protruding upper teeth or open bites (upper and lower front teeth do not touch when back teeth are biting down). The orthodontist will use fixed or movable appliances to widen the jaw or change its alignment.
Ages 10 to 14 – The most common time to put on braces is after all the permanent teeth have come in. But some children get braces as young as 8, and some aren’t ready until their late teens. Orthodontists may take multiple X-rays, photographs and plaster models before fitting appliances or braces.
Braces aren’t just for teenagers – it’s never too late to improve your dental health and beautify your smile. Your general dentist can help you determine if orthodontic treatment is the right option for you. You can also request an evaluation and receive treatment from an orthodontist, a specialist in diagnosing, preventing and treating improper alignment of the teeth.
WHY WOULD ADULTS NEED BRACES?
Some adults never received orthodontic treatment as children to correct problems such as crooked or crowded teeth, spacing between teeth, overbites and deep bites, incorrect jaw position or jaw joint disorders. Left untreated, these problems may result in tooth decay, gum disease, headaches and earaches, as well as speaking, biting or chewing problems.
IS ORTHODONTIC TREATMENT DIFFERENT FOR ADULTS?
Braces can provide adults the same benefits children receive. However, treatment may take longer than it does for children. The average adult wears braces for 18 months to three years. As with children, adults may need to wear a retainer to maintain the results of treatment after braces are removed.
TYPES OF BRACES
Metal braces, made of high-grade stainless steel and attached to the front of teeth, are the most common.
Clear ceramic braces, are worn on the teeth just like traditional steel braces. Unlike metal braces, they blend with the colour of the teeth for a much less noticeable appearance.
Lingual (or concealed) braces, have brackets that attach to the back of teeth, so they are hidden from view.
“Invisible” braces (clear aligners) are a series of clear, customized removable appliances called aligners. Not only are these braces less visible, but they also are removable so they won’t trap food and plaque between your teeth like metal braces. Each aligner is worn for about two weeks and only removed for eating, brushing and flossing. This may be an option for individuals with mild spacing problems.
WILL I NEED TO HAVE TEETH TAKEN OUT TO MAKE ROOM?
You may not have enough room for all your permanent teeth. If so, you may need to have some permanent teeth taken out to make space. Your dental team will tell you whether this is the case. Sometimes space can be made using other forms of treatment.
WHAT ARE THE BRACKETS MADE OF?
Fixed braces are not always made of metal. Plastic and ceramic can be used, especially for adults.
HOW LONG WILL IT TAKE?
The length of treatment depends on how severe the problem is, and it may take anything from a few months to two-and-a-half years. Most people can be treated in one to two years.
HOW DO I CARE FOR MY BRACE AND TEETH?
It is important to keep having your teeth checked by your dental team while you are having orthodontic treatment. You also need to take extra care of your teeth and mouth:
- Clean your teeth carefully every day, including between your teeth where you can. Braces are delicate and you need to make sure you clean them carefully so that they do not break. Your dental team will be able to show you the special techniques to use depending on the appliance you are wearing.
- Cut down on how often you have sugary foods and drinks. Avoid snacks and drinks containing sugars, and fizzy drinks. Also, sticky and hard foods may damage your brace.
- Brush your teeth last thing at night and at least one other time during the day. Use a mouthwash if you need to. Your dental team may recommend a stronger fluoride toothpaste, or perhaps a fluoride gel or mouth rinse, for you to use.
TO KNOW MORE CALL NOW – 09930113857 (SK Smile Dental Clinic, Airoli)