What are orthodontic services?
Orthodontics is the area of dentistry that is concerned with correcting teeth and jaws that are not correctly positioned or aligned. Orthodontists are dental specialists who treat a variety of conditions such as overbites, underbites, crossbites, open bites, crooked teeth, crowded mouths, as well as gaps between teeth.
Why should I consider getting orthodontic treatment?
Teeth need to be properly aligned for functional and aesthetic reasons and to preserve the health of the mouth.
If you have any of the following symptoms, you may want to consider consulting an orthodontist:
- Crowded, misaligned, or protruding teeth
- Occasions of clenching or grinding your teeth
- Discomfort when chewing or closing your mouth
If your top teeth and bottom teeth do not align when you bite, this could result in uneven growth and wearing down of the teeth. Crowded or crooked teeth are more difficult to brush and floss, leading to cavities and poor gum health.
Your orthodontist will be able to accurately identify the treatment that is best for you.Enquire with our dental specialists.
Did you know?
Although the first braces were constructed in 1728 by a Frenchman named Pierre Fouchard, archaeologists have evidence that the ancient Egyptians had their own method for straightening teeth. Mummies have been found with metal bands wrapped around their teeth, and it has been suggested that catgut was used to close the gaps.¹
What are the risks of orthodontic treatment?
Your orthodontist will explain the risks related to orthodontic treatment. These may include damage to the enamel of the tooth, inflammation of the gums, and the possibility of some pain or discomfort in the jaw. While these risks are relatively minor, they need to be discussed with your orthodontist. Such risks can be reduced by an increased awareness of dental hygiene and ongoing care and management by your dental team.
How should I prepare for my appointment?
Your orthodontist will examine your mouth, and order x-rays and even moulds of your teeth in order to recommend the correct treatment and care for you. After a thorough evaluation of all elements, a treatment plan to fit your personal needs will be explained.
Depending on your situation, you may need teeth extracted before any device is fitted. Your device may be fixed or removable, and you may have braces and a retainer. Before any medical or dental procedure, be sure to ask your medical team any questions to ensure you feel well-informed and confident before your treatment.
What can I expect during orthodontic treatment?
The treatment period between patients can vary. For all orthodontic procedures, there are some aspects that will require adjustment.
Your braces or retainer may make eating more difficult and after each orthodontist visit (usually every 4-8 weeks), you are likely to experience some discomfort. In addition, you may feel your speech affected at the beginning as you become used to your device and the space it takes up in your mouth.
The following tips will help protect your device and maintain good oral hygiene.
- Avoid hard foods, such as nuts and raw carrots, as well as sugary food and drinks.
- Cut food into smaller pieces that are easier to chew and swallow.
- Brush your teeth and gargle more often (after every meal) to avoid tooth decay and gum inflammation.
What happens after my orthodontic treatment?
Each case is different, but after your treatment is completed, your device will be removed and your teeth will be polished. It is likely that after the removal of braces, you will be required to wear a retainer to maintain the position of your teeth. Your orthodontist will provide you with more personalised information.Request an appointment with a dental specialist today.
¹ Mentalfloss.com. (2017). A Brief History of Braces.