Can anybody be treated?
Yes, and at any age too. However, orthodontics is successful when carried out in children whose teeth and bones are still actively growing. It is recommended, that every child receive an orthodontic evaluation by age seven.
How do you carry out orthodontic treatment?
Treatment involves wearing a brace (appliance) that is specially made for you or a conventional one. These can be of modern design such as the low friction Damon system braces or the ultimate in cosmetic braces. Depending on the type, the appliance can move your teeth into position; guide the way your jaw grows, or even widen your jaw to make room for crowded teeth. Occasionally, it might be necessary to extract some teeth if your mouth is very crowded.
How are orthodontic problems corrected? First, pretreatment records are made. These records are important tools for the dentist to use in making an accurate diagnosis. They include medical/dental history, clinical examination, plaster study models of teeth, photos of your face and teeth and x-rays of your mouth and head. This information will be used to decide on the best treatment.
A custom treatment plan is outlined for each patient. The specific treatment appliance best suited to correct the patient's orthodontic problem is constructed. There are a variety of different orthodontic appliances that may be used.
When the orthodontic appliances are in place, this is considered the "active treatment" phase. Appliances are adjusted periodically so that the teeth are moved correctly and efficiently.
The time required for orthodontic treatment varies from person to person. An important factor in how long a patient wears braces is how well the patient cooperates during treatment — for example, by following instructions to wear rubber bands or headgear.
After active treatment is completed, the "retention" phase begins. A patient will need to wear a retainer so that the teeth stay in their new positions. For severe orthodontic problems, surgery may be recommended.
What are the different types of orthodontic appliances?
There are two types of cosmetic appliances, fixed and removable. Different combinations of braces may be used to treat individual cases.
Removable appliances are used for simple treatment, and work by exerting gentle pressure.
Fixed one – braces, give more precise guidance and have brackets and bands temporarily attached to the teeth. These brackets can be metal, clear or tooth–colored.
Will it make my teeth sore?
Quite possibly, but do not be discouraged. A few hours after fitting your brace your teeth may well feel tender and sore. This discomfort may last for three to five days and a mild analgesic, such as paracetamol, may be necessary.
How long will treatment take?
This depends on your age and your bite problem. Most people need to wear their brace for about 24 months, but you can make a difference by looking after and wearing your braces properly. We now also use the Damon System braces, which can reduce treatment time by several months (www.damonbraces.com). Broken braces and missed appointments will slow your treatment down. What you need to remember is that this is a team effort and the success and speed of your treatment depends on the partnership between you, the dental nurses and your orthodontist.
How often will I need to visit the orthodontist?
Generally your brace will need adjusting every 6 to 8 weeks.
Are there less noticeable braces? Today's braces are generally less noticeable than those of the past. Wires that are used for braces today are also less noticeable. In some cases, brackets may be put on the back of the teeth - lingual appliances. In some cases can be used technique call invisalign. For more information have a look at www.invisalign.com. In our surgery we offer lingual technique Incognito and plastic appliance OrthoCaps. Both systems are Germany production.