An orthodontist is an individual with an additional two to three years of training after dental school in the correction of malocclusion and malpositioned teeth. Ask your family dentist about whether or not you would benefit from seeing an orthodontist!
Considerations for a referral to orthodontics:
- The need for space maintenance due to early loss of baby teeth
- An excessive thumb sucking habit
- Severe malocclusion, Jaw discrepancies
- Open bite
- Cleft lip of Cleft palate
- Crowding or spacing
- Esthetics issues
- Grinding your teeth
There are several different types of appliances that can be used to correct your bite or smile. The type of appliance used is typically dependent on the malocclusion you might have and the age at which treatment is sought out.
Types of Braces
The traditional braces are fixed and used to correct the misalignment of teeth in the jaw or to correct an offset bite. These are typically used on permanent dentition in a child or adult. Braces can be used along with a palatal expander appliance in order to expand jaws and correct crossbite or a restricted jaw. On the hand, there can also be removable appliances used to correct malocclusion or malpositioned teeth.
Fixed braces are placed by and orthodontist and removed only once alignment and bite have been corrected.
Several types of fixed braces are available:
Stainless steel wires and brackets are used to put pressure on the teeth to create movement with the final goal of alignment and bite correction if necessary. These are the most common type of braces that are being used.
These are what orthodontists will call self-ligating braces. In other words, there are no elastic ties needed to hold the archwires in place. Both patients and orthodontics like these type of braces because they are more comfortable and require fewer in office visits.
These are very similar to traditional braces with the exception of the actual brackets being clear. The brackets are made of a ceramic and thus are more esthetically pleasing.
The most common type of removable aligner used today is invisalign. This is a series of clear aligners used to move the teeth solely in horizontal direction thus limiting the cases in which they can be used. These aligners require compliance in that the must be worn during all times except eating, brushing, and flossing.
After thorough review of your dental history, x-rays, oral hygiene, bone and gum health your orthodontist will be able to determine the most appropriate treatment for you. At this point, your orthodontist will have a consultation with you in order to explain treatment process and goals.
Initially receiving braces will be an adjustment. Patients typically experience mild soreness after initially bonding and after each check up visit. This is due to the pressure that is being put on the teeth to promote movement and alignment. Patients most commonly used over-the-counter analgesics for the first couple of days to help with soreness.
Once treatment is rendered complete your orthodontist will remove your braces and provide you with a retainer. This retainer will initially be worn 24/7 and eventually only worn at night.
For any questions please call our knowledgeable orthodontic team!