Orthodontic treatment is one of the most effective ways to improve the health and appearance of your smile. Orthodontics is the field of dentistry that specializes in treating irregularities in the alignment and occlusion of teeth. If your teeth are crooked, spaced improperly, or the upper and lower jaws do not fit together correctly, you may benefit from treatment. The following is some important information regarding routine orthodontic experiences.
At your appointment, our orthodontist will examine your teeth and bone structure. We may take X-rays, digital images, impressions, and other records to better evaluate the relationship between your upper and lower jaws and to see the positioning of your teeth. Once we make a diagnosis, we will explain your treatment options. Braces are one of the most common orthodontic treatments. They consist of brackets, bands, and wires that are affixed to the teeth throughout the treatment process. They can make many types of teeth and jaw movements, and correct most types of orthodontic problems, including overbites, over jets, underbites, crossbites, gaps, crowding, and rotations.
You may need a cleaning before the braces are attached to your teeth to ensure they are completely free of plaque or tartar. Next, brackets are bonded to the teeth. These brackets are most commonly bonded to the front sides of the teeth, but they may also be attached to the back surfaces of teeth, particularly if appearance is a main concern. Ceramic and clear brackets are also available. A special arch wire is then attached to the brackets using bands. Kids may prefer colorful decorative bands, but clear bands are available for a more subtle look.
Once your braces have been attached, our orthodontist will make periodic adjustments over the course of treatment. Each adjustment will move your teeth a little bit more. This process is typically not painful, but there can be some discomfort after adjustments. A soft diet and over-the-counter pain medication can help you during these sensitive periods. Excellent dental hygiene is essential during orthodontic treatment. Plaque and tartar buildup around the brackets or along the gum line can lead to tooth decay or gum disease, both of which can interfere with your treatment and cause long-term damage to your teeth.
Braces can be a great way to get the smile of your dreams. Call our office today to learn more or to schedule an appointment with our orthodontist.