For most people, a beautiful smile is the most obvious benefit of orthodontics. After orthodontic treatment, patients often feel more self-confident and take great pride in their new straight smile! Your dentist may have also discussed with you additional benefits of having healthy teeth and proper jaw alignment. Crooked and crowded teeth are hard to clean and maintain. This can result in tooth decay, gum disease, and lead to eventual tooth loss. Other orthodontic problems can contribute to abnormal tooth wear, poor chewing function, stress on gum and bone tissue, or misalignment of the jaw joints (TMJ problems). Typically, with quality orthodontic care, many if not all of these issues can be resolved.
HOW ORTHODONTIC TREATMENT WORKS?
Orthodontic appliances can be made of metal, ceramic, or plastic. They may be removable or they may be brackets bonded to the teeth. By placing a constant, gentle force in a carefully controlled direction, braces slowly move teeth to a corrected position. This is a great time to wear braces! Gone are the days when a metal band with a bracket was placed around each tooth. You can choose brackets that are clear or metallic color. You can choose the color of the ties that hold the wire in the brackets. Wires are also less noticeable than they used to be and the latest materials move teeth faster with less discomfort to patients.
DURATION OF TREATMENT
Treatment time can take one to three years, depending on the growth of the patient’s mouth and face and the severity of the problem. Patients grow at different rates and will respond variously to orthodontic treatment, so the time to case completion may differ from the original estimate. The patient’s diligent use of any prescribed rubber bands or appliances is an important factor in achieving the most efficient treatment. Interceptive, or early treatment procedures, may take as few as six months.
– METALLIC BRACES –
These are the metal brackets and wires that most people picture when they hear the word “braces.” However, modern brackets are smaller and less noticeable than the notorious “metal-mouth” braces than many adults remember.
– Ceramic Braces –
Ceramic braces are the same size and shape as metal braces, except that they have tooth-colored or clear brackets that blend in to teeth. Some even use tooth-colored wires to be even less noticeable.
– Lingual Braces –
Lingual braces are the same as traditional metal braces, except that the brackets and wires are placed on the inside of teeth.
– Invisalign –
Invis¬align consists of a series of 18 to 30 custom-made, mouth guard-like clear plastic aligners. The aligners are removable and are replaced every 2 weeks.