A guide to orthodontics

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Most people have heard of orthodontics, but what does it mean? It’s a specialised kind of dental treatment that involves correcting the teeth when they are crooked, protruding or overcrowded. The purpose of this is to make the teeth look better, and to help them function better. Orthodontic treatment can also help to protect the teeth, gums and jaw by ensuring that a person’s bite is evenly distributed.

Why do people opt to get orthodontic treatment?

Getting the teeth straightened or moved into a more uniform position has lots of benefits. People who have had this kind of treatment usually feel much more confident about their appearance, and this can translate into several different areas of their lives.

Straight teeth are much easier to keep clean. When the teeth are overcrowded, crooked or sticking out, it is much more likely that food and plaque will become lodged in the teeth and gums – causing decay and making gum disease an increased possibility.

Teeth that are prominent are at much greater risk of damage;orthodontics helps to protect them from this. When a person’s bite is not right, this can lead to issues with the jaw as well as causing the teeth to appear misaligned. These issues can include headaches that can have an impact on a person’s day to day life. Getting braces can help to alleviate all these difficulties.

When is the best time to get braces?

The ideal time to get the teeth straightened and the bite improved is in childhood or adolescence, but people of all ages can benefit from getting orthodontic treatment. More and more adults are opting to get their teeth fixed in later life, and finding that the results of treatment are well worth the commitment and time.

Who can give orthodontic treatment?

dentist explaining orthodontics

People who are considering having their teeth improved with braces should choose an expert professional who is trained and skilled in this specialist area. This will result in a treatment process during which the patient feels comfortable and at ease; and after which they get the results they were expecting.

How is the treatment started?

The orthodontic process begins with a complete assessment of the teeth, gums and mouth. The teeth and gums should be in good health before this kind of treatment begins. If this is not the case, the dentist can help to resolve any issues before getting started. In most cases, x rays are taken and the orthodontist will take impressions of the teeth to get a clear picture of their position.

Is it necessary to get teeth removed?

Some patients may need to have a tooth or teeth removed if overcrowding is an issue. If this is the case, the extraction would take place before braces are fitted.

Different kinds of braces

There are lots of different kinds of braces, including those that are removable, fixed and invisible. The orthodontist advises each patient about the best options for them on an individual basis, so that they can then make an informed choice.

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