What is Orthodontics?
Orthodontics is the branch of dentistry concerned with the growth of the teeth, jaws and face. Irregularities of the teeth and jaws can be corrected, improving the way they both look and function.
What kinds of problems can be treated using Orthodontics?
- Crowding – teeth may be crooked where the jaw is narrow and there is lack of space.
- Gaps between teeth.
- Protruding upper front teeth.
- Incorrect bite – which may cause problems chewing or place excessive pressure on the teeth or gums.
- Crossbites – where upper teeth are behind or inside the corresponding lower teeth in the bite.
- Impacted teeth – where teeth come through in the wrong position or do not erupt at all.
- Asymmetrical smile.
- Abnormalities in the growth or relationship of the upper and lower jaws.
What are some of the benefits of Orthodontic Treatment?
- Improvement in appearance which can also improve self-esteem.
- Straight teeth are easier to clean and therefore the risk of decay and gum disease is reduced.
- Correcting way teeth bite together can enable normal chewing and also eliminate other problems, such as headaches, caused by an incorrect bite.
- Correcting protruding front teeth reduces their risk of damage from accidental trauma.
- Preparation for advance dental treatment, such as implants, crowns or bridges.
When should children have an Orthodontic Assessment?
Taking your child for regular, routine dental check-ups will enable the dentist to monitor their growth and development and look out for any potential orthodontic problems. This is especially important when the permanent teeth start to come through from around the age of 6 years onwards. If there are any concerns, your child may be referred for a full assessment by an orthodontist. We have orthodontists on our team who have regular clinics at Smile Hub so that you do not have to travel elsewhere.
What things should be considered before choosing orthodontic treatment?
- It is important to have a full assessment, including x-rays and taking impressions to make a plaster study model of your teeth, in order to plan the best type of treatment.
- Orthodontic treatment takes time, anything from six months up to two and a half years, depending on the type of treatment.
- Commitment and cooperation is very important for treatment to be successful. This means that you would need to keep regular appointments, every 2-6 weeks, for checking or adjusting your appliance. If you have a removable brace it is vital that it is worn for the full time that your dentist or orthodontist advises.
- Wearing braces can make cleaning your teeth more difficult, so dental hygiene is extra important during treatment.
- Retainers are usually required to be worn for a long period of time after treatment has finished. There are various types of retainers which prevent your teeth moving back into the wrong position.