What is Orthodontics?
Orthodontics is the branch of dentistry that corrects teeth and jaws that are positioned improperly. Crooked teeth and teeth that do not fit together correctly are harder to keep clean, are at risk of being lost early due to tooth decay and periodontal disease, and cause extra stress on the chewing muscles that can lead to headaches, TMJ syndrome and neck, shoulder and back pain. Teeth that are crooked or not in the right place can also detract from one's appearance.
How do I Know if I Need Orthodontics?
Only your dentist or orthodontist can determine whether you can benefit from orthodontics. Based on diagnostic tools that include a full medical and dental health history, a clinical exam, plaster models of your teeth, and special X-rays and photographs, an orthodontist or dentist can decide whether orthodontics are recommended, and develop a treatment plan that's right for you.
How Does Orthodontic Treatment Work?
Many different types of appliances, both fixed and removable, are used to help move teeth, retrain muscles and affect the growth of the jaws. These appliances work by placing gentle pressure on the teeth and jaws. The severity of your problem will determine which orthodontic approach is likely to be the most effective.
Early Orthodontics May Mean Less Treatment Later.
Special care and attention makes children's dentistry a pleasant experience. Our preventive philosophy will help you achieve optimum oral health for your children. The doctors of Place D'Orleans Dental Office monitor the growth and development of your child's face, jaws, teeth and airway. When appropriate, we recommend interceptive therapies, dental facial orthopedics, 2 phase orthodontics and breathing evaluation that result in beautiful smiles and pleasing facial profiles.
Children today tend to get braces at a much earlier age. It's not uncommon for a patient as young as 7 or earlier to begin orthodontic treatment.
It is recommended that all children receive an orthodontic screening by age 7. Permanent teeth generally begin to come in at age 6 or 7, and it is at this point in a child's oral development that orthodontic problems become apparent. At this age, tooth development and jaw growth have not been completed, so certain conditions, like crowding, are easier to address.
Before permanent teeth have come in, it may be possible to help teeth to erupt (emerge through the gums) into their proper positions. Early intervention takes advantage of the fact that a child's jaw is still growing. There's a better chance that the adult teeth will emerge naturally where they should if the proper appliance was given at an early stage.
It is important to note that children who receive interceptive orthodontics may still need braces or other orthodontic appliances later. However, this early treatment may shorten and simplify future treatment and may eliminate the need for more drastic measures such as the need to extract permanent teeth in the future.Because bones are still growing, it's an ideal time to evaluate a child and determine what orthodontic treatment, if any, may be needed either now or in the future.
Getting Used to
Braces today tend to be less uncomfortable and less visible than they used to be, but they still take some getting used to. Food can get caught in the wires, flossing and brushing can take more time, and after the monthly adjustments sometimes the teeth are a little sore. Tooth discomfort can be controlled by taking an analgesic, such as ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin and others) or aspirin if necessary. The use of lighter and more flexible wires has greatly lessened the discomfort associated with braces.
Adults and Braces
Why are more adults getting braces?
As braces have become less bulky and visible in recent years, more and more adults are wearing them, for a variety of reasons. Some adults want to correct problems with their teeth or jaws before they cause serious or further damage. Others want to feel better about their appearance by addressing longstanding cosmetic concerns.
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