Orthodontic Treatment Guide
Introduction to Orthodontics
Orthodontics is the branch of dentistry that focuses on correcting the alignment of teeth and making sure they are properly positioned in your jaw. An orthodontist specialises in treatments that help straighten your teeth, such as braces or dental retainers. Both of these methods use consistent, gentle pressure to gradually guide teeth into position, relieving tension and stress in your jaw and giving you a healthier smile.
Orthodontics can be used to treat a range of different dental problems. Some of the most common include crooked or crowded teeth, over or under bites caused by misaligned jaws, irregular positioning or gaps in your teeth. Orthodontics may also look after issues caused by dental diseases like decay or gum disease, or dental injuries & accidents.
Which orthodontic treatment is the right choice for your needs? The absolute best way to learn which offered orthodontic solution will help to meet your smile needs is to have the orthodontist examine and evaluate your teeth and mouth. There are several choices in orthodontic options, including those that address just minor concerns and the cosmetic. Proper identification of your orthodontic issues can help to determine the type of braces that will help you to see the results that you are looking for.
This guide below will help you identify the potential issues you or your family may have and give you a better idea of the suitable treatments available to you.
Closing small to moderate gaps between the teeth
Patients who have small to moderately spaced gaps between their teeth may benefit from braces particularly if there are additional orthodontic concerns that need to be addressed.
The Invisalign aligner system is another option that can help patients to see results. These clear and flexible aligners are worn over the teeth, to apply steady and gentle pressure to the teeth. Aligner trays are switched out to the next in the series every few weeks until the desired results have been achieved. Two of the best advantages to this orthodontic solution is that the aligner trays are virtually invisible when they are in place and they are removable for eating, drinking and cleaning.
Cosmetic smile adjustments
Clear or cosmetic braces, like the Six Months Smile system, can assist patients who are looking to adjust just those teeth that are most visible when they smile. These teeth could have small gaps between them or simply need a bit of adjustment in order to get them into the perfectly straight order that will result in a beaming smile.
Patients who are interested in just cosmetic adjustments can typically see their results in as few as 4 months, but do tend to average 6 months. Some patients may need a few extra months in order to attain that perfect beautiful smile.
Straightening angled or crooked teeth
Overcrowding is one of the most common causes of crooked or overlapping teeth. Orthodontic treatment can help to realign teeth so that they are not pushing against each other. When teeth shift against their neighbours, they are at a higher risk for damage and decay.
This can also potentially lead to gum disease and the ultimate loss of the tooth. Traditional braces can help to realign teeth, as can some other solutions like the Invisalign system. The severity of adjustment needed will dictate which solution will work best for your needs.
Correcting an improper bite
In most orthodontic cases your Orthodontist will seek to correct your bite. A problem with the way that you bite may due to genetics or may also stem from poor oral habits such as thumb sucking or nail biting. There are a number of disordered bite types. They may include the following.
- Overbite: this is how much the top teeth overlap the bottom, ideally it should be 25% some people have less some more both of these problems can be lead to problems later in life if it is not corrected your orthodontist will explain what these problems are.
- Crossbite: The upper teeth bite inside of the lower teeth; this can occur on just one side, both sides and can affect the front and back teeth and even the position of the lower jaw.
- Underbite: The upper teeth sit behind the lower teeth. This can be due to a problem with your jaw bones.
- Overjet: Not to be confused with the overbite, top teeth protrude horizontally past the lower teeth. Protruding teeth can lead to issues with speech and eating and are more prone to trauma.
- Open bite: The upper front teeth do not overlap lower teeth with an open bite.
The orthodontic solution that will work best will be based upon the needs of the individual, and also on the severity of the correction that will be needed. The earlier than concerns with bite are addressed, the better the results will be.
Generally treatment such as functional appliances followed by metal braces can help the above issues.
Sometimes it is not possible to use just braces to correct the problems with your teeth. This can occur if the pt has jaws that are too big or too small in some circumstances we need to engage a surgeon to help us get the best result for you or for your child.
Sometimes surgery can be avoided and for this reason all children should be seen by an Orthodontist about age 9 or 10 years old. If in doubt see your dentist first and they can advise you.
- Orthognathic surgery
Orthodontic Treatments Available
Traditional Metal Braces have shown to provide the best end results while remaining affordable for our patients
Early Intervention will shorten the overall treatment time and also treat other serious health issues.
These are metal braces which are less noticeable than the regular braces, making them very popular
Six Month Smiles
If you want straight white teeth, with a pain-free treatment, in just an average time of six-months, without extractions 6 month smiles may be suitable for you
Invisalign is a modern orthodontic treatment that uses a custom-made set of clear plastic retainers to gently and gradually guide your teeth into proper alignment.
Functional appliances are used to address issues with the jaw and bring the bite into alignment, such as expanding the palate of the mouth
Whether you need a new retainer, or a replacement we can help! Orthodontic Retainers are vital to keep your teeth aligned after treatment
Benefits of Orthodontics Treatment
While improving the appearance of your smile is reason enough to consider orthodontics, braces have benefits far beyond that. Orthodontic treatments can go along way to improving your overall oral health. This is because straighter teeth are much easier to clean, and when you keep your teeth clean your whole mouth benefits.
In addition, straight teeth allows for more efficient chewing and less teeth grinding as everything fits together better. When your teeth are even a little out of alignment, you are more likely to clench your jaw or grinding your teeth, especially as you sleep, because your jaw slips or jerks when you try to close your bite. This can cause headaches, jaw-aches, and even back aches from all the stress. Orthodontic treatments will help correct all of these issues, and also give you a more attractive smile, boosting your confidence, and ensuring your teeth are more likely to last a lifetime.