Wondering how important your relationship with your orthodontist is? It is very important. Building a strong relationship with your dental professional is an ideal way for you to make sure that you are getting the necessary dental treatments. When you feel confident in the relationship that you have with your orthodontist, you are more likely…
Orthodontic Treatments for Teeth Alignment Correction
There are more than 4.5 million people in the United States who have orthodontic treatment. The goal is to have a healthier, more beautiful smile. An orthodontist is a kind of dentist who has more training to fix poorly aligned teeth. Keep reading to learn more about your options.
Why teeth end up being crooked
Both environmental factors and genetics play a role in whether or not teeth will be crooked. With hereditary factors, a patient might have gaps or crooked teeth. It might also include crowding and malocclusions, or bad bites. Environmental factors like tongue thrusting or thumb-sucking can also cause issues. Plus, an accident can knock the teeth out of alignment.
Straightening misaligned teeth
There are three different stages for orthodontic treatment. The first stage involves using appliances to make more space in the mouth. For instance, a patient might have a palatal expander to widen the palate. Or lingual bars might be used to expand the width of the lower jaw.
The next stage is the active correction stage. That involves placing the braces on the patient’s teeth. This will straighten and adjust the teeth. Over a period of time, jaw problems will also be corrected. The length of time for this stage will depend on the issues and the irregularity of each tooth.
The last stage is perhaps one of the most important. It involves retention once the braces come off. A retainer will be used to keep the teeth in place. Either a fixed or a removable one will be used. The patient will still visit the orthodontist a few times a year to keep the teeth straight.
In the past, having braces meant there would be large metal bands around each of the teeth. But today, there is only a bracket that is attached to one side of the teeth. The brackets are most commonly attached to the cheek, or visible portion. But the brackets can also go on the interior side of the teeth. These are known as lingual braces.
Some brackets might be made out of plastic or a tooth-colored material. These will be less visible when the patient smiles. Dental cement is used to place the brackets on the teeth. Then an archwire will be applied to both the upper and the lower set of teeth.
One alternative to metal braces is clear braces. This system uses a set of clear aligners that are worn for most of the day. These aligners can come off for teeth cleaning and eating. That way, the patient’s teeth can stay cleaner during the process.
Choose orthodontic care today
If you have gaps, crowding, or other orthodontic issues, you do not have to live with them. Today, there are more options than ever to help you get the smile you have always dreamed of. Once you have finished your orthodontic treatment, you should wear your retainer enough. Making an appointment with an orthodontist is your first step.
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