What is orthodontics?The branch of dentistry specializing in the diagnosis, prevention, & treatment of dental & facial irregularities.What is an orthodontist?An orthodontist is a specialist who has completed an advanced education program after dental school, to learn the special skills required to manage tooth movement and guide facial development.
What are some possible benefits of orthodontics?
A more attractive smile. Reduced self-consciousness during critical development years. Better function of teeth.Possible increase in self-esteem. Increased ability to clean the teeth. Better long term health of teeth and gums.Reduce the risk of injury to protruded front teeth. Aid in optimizing dental treatment.
What are some signs that braces may be needed?
At what age should orthodontic treatment occur?
Upper front teeth protrude excessively over the lower teeth (buck teeth). Upper front teeth cover the majority of lower teeth when biting together (deep bite). Upper front teeth are behind or inside the lower front teeth (underbite). The upper and lower front teeth do not touch when biting together (open bite). Crowded teeth. Spaced teeth. Finger or thumb sucking habits which continue after six or seven years old. Difficulty chewing. Teeth wearing unevenly or excessively
Orthodontic treatment can be started at any age. Many orthodontic problems are easier to correct if detected at an early age before jaw growth has slowed. Early treatment may mean that a patient can avoid surgery and more serious complications. The American Association of Orthodontists recommends that every child first visit an orthodontist by age 7 or earlier if a problem is detected by parents, the family dentist or the child's physician.
What is Phase I and Phase II treatment?
Phase I, or early interceptive treatment, is limited orthodontic treatment (i.e. expander or partial braces plus a headgear) before all of the permanent teeth have erupted. Such treatment can occur between the ages of six and ten.
This treatment is sometimes recommended to make more space for developing teeth, correction of crossbites, overbites, underbites, or harmful oral habits. Phase II treatment is also called comprehensive treatment, because it involves full braces when all of the permanent teeth have erupted, usually between the ages of eleven and thirteen.
Would an adult patient benefit from orthodontics?
Orthodontic treatment can be successful at any age. Everyone wants a beautiful and healthy smile. Twenty to twenty five percent of orthodontic patients today are adults.
How does orthodontic treatment work?
Braces use steady gentle pressure to gradually move teeth into their proper positions. The brackets that are placed on your teeth and the archwire that connects them are the main components. When the archwire is placed into the brackets, it tries to return to its original shape, as it does, it applies pressure to move your teeth to more ideal positions.
How long does orthodontic treatment take?
Treatment times vary on a case-by-case basis, but the average time for upper and lower braces is about two years.
Actual treatment time can be affected by rate of growth and severity of the correction necessary. Treatment length is also dependent upon patient compliance. Maintaining good oral hygiene and keeping regular appointments are important in keeping treatment time on schedule.
Do braces hurt?
The placement of bands and brackets on your teeth does not hurt. Once your braces are placed and connected with the archwires you may feel some soreness of your teeth for one to four days. Your lips and cheeks may need two weeks to get used to the braces on your teeth.
Will braces interfere with playing sports? No, however it is recommended that patients wear a protective mouth guard.