What is Orthodontics?
Orthodontics is the arm of dentistry that specializes in malocclusions or ‘bad bites’. A bad bite tends to happen when the jaws do not line up correctly. This results in wonky teeth and a bite that doesn’t work properly. The jaws can also look unbalanced.
By using braces and other appliances, an orthodontist can fix a bad bite. The correction of the teeth and supporting sections can make for a more attractive, healthy smile.
What are the main causes?
Most bad bites are inherited with genetic issues such as crowding, protrusion, spacing, missing or extra teeth and jaw growth issues.
Other issues may happen over time due to the loss of permanent or primary teeth, thumb sucking or an accident, for example.
Why is it important to receive treatment?
When your mouth is crooked and crowded, and your teeth are hard to clean, tooth decay, tooth loss, and gum disease are potential issues that can occur. Having a bad bite can also result in uneven tooth wear, difficulty speaking and chewing, and can add stress to the gum tissue and supporting bones causing jaw joint issues.
Emotionally, a bad bite can have adverse effects on self-esteem and confidence. If a bad bite goes untreated, a child or adult may continue in life with their hand over their mouth or avoiding smiling.
It can also lead to more costly dental treatment in the future if it is left untreated early on.
When should a child see an orthodontist?
It is recommended by The American Association of Orthodontists that children see an orthodontist from the age of seven. This age allows any orthodontic issues to be found early.
Do adults benefit from orthodontic treatments?
Around one in every five orthodontics patients are over 18 years old. Braces can be used at any age, and treatment is even more appealing than ever before for adults as the solutions are now more comfortable and less visible.
What choices are there for braces?
There are many choices in appliances that patients can use to straighten their teeth:
- Invisalign – this treatment uses invisible plastic appliances that are replaced every fortnight. The solution suits most patients who don’t want to wear traditional braces. However, they might not be suitable for some of the more complex orthodontic issues.
- Metal braces – this traditional method is popular for patients wanting to show off their coloured elastic ties and braces. The method is one of the most durable too.
- Ceramic braces – these clear braces offer an aesthetic solution along with an excellent quality of treatment.
What is my job during treatment?
Any orthodontic treatment is a shared effort by the patient and the dentist. The patient must adhere to the orthodontist’s instructions, make sure they are at every appointment, and ensure a good oral hygiene regime. So brushing at home and making regular checkup appointments is a must.
How long does treatment take?
It usually takes between one to three years, plus retention, for orthodontic treatment. The retention phase usually involves the use of retainers and begins once the braces are removed.
Is the treatment expensive?
The price of orthodontic treatment can vary depending on the extent of the bad bite and the treatment length. Your treatment and financing options will be discussed ahead of treatment beginning, with braces being far more affordable today than ever before.
Book an Appointment Today
The first step towards a beautiful, healthy smile is to schedule an appointment. Please contact our office by phone or complete the appointment request form online