Table of Contents
What is orthodontics?
In the same way as there are specialties in different fields of medicine such as neurology or ophthalmology, dentists also have the choice to specialize. Orthodontics is a dental specialty which deals with prevention, diagnosis and treatment of facial and dental irregularities.
Orthodontics mainly deals with improper positioning of teeth. A person may have overcrowded teeth, an overbite, underbite, crooked teeth or jaw misalignment which can lead to speech or eating problems. It is in such cases that orthodontic treatment is recommended to slowly change teeth positioning to be straight and aligned.
Orthodontists are qualified dentists who embark on an additional three years of university level study and gain extensive clinical experience in an orthodontic practice.
A major dilemma people have when experiencing teeth problems is whether to go to a dentist or orthodontist. Well, it boils down to what kind of treatment you need. Both specialists have a valuable role in maintaining your dental health and will often work together to offer holistic treatments. If your dentist thinks you need orthodontic work, he or she will refer you to a specialist orthodontist. A dentist can help with general dental, cosmetic work or extraction of a tooth to complement orthodontic work.
Why strengthen your teeth
Strengthening your teeth is one of the most suitable ways to protect them from decay. You can expect some wear and tear, but there is plenty you can do to have strong healthy teeth and gums. Take a few simple steps for healthy teeth and a winning smile.
Limit sugary drinks and foods
Mouth bacteria feed on sugar from food and drinks. The acid produced by bacteria is what softens and wears away your enamel (the surface of your teeth). Soft drinks may have extra acids that may cause further damage. When you are thirsty, you want to avoid extra acid by choosing a glass of plain water over other alternatives.
Eat foods that protect the enamel
Foods rich in calcium counter the effects of acids in your mouth that can cause decay. Calcium also helps to keep your teeth and bones strong. Cheese, milk and other dairy products assist in strengthening and protect the enamel. If you are lactose intolerant or don’t eat dairy products, look for foods with added calcium.
Fluoride is nature’s cavity fighter because it helps repair early stages of tooth decay and strengthens the enamel. It also makes your teeth more resistant to acid that comes from bacteria in your mouth and from foods. The American Dental Association (ADA) recommends fluoride toothpaste as soon as the first tooth appears. You can also rinse with mouthwash that contains fluoride for strong teeth and prevention of cavities.
What are dental braces
It is important to have straight teeth. Teeth that are misaligned (out of place) or crooked affect the way a person talks, chews and how their smile looks.
Because crooked teeth have unnatural spaces, they present difficulties in cleaning and are more likely to have cavities. In some cases, crooked teeth can affect jaw alignment resulting in pain and discomfort. This is where dental braces come in.
Braces are used to correct teeth that are crooked or crowded. There are different types of braces and the kind of treatment will depend on your preference and the options provided by your orthodontist or dentist. Traditional braces apply pressure to realign teeth. They usually consist of small brackets cemented to one’s teeth, connected by a wire which is periodically tightened by your practitioner to gradually shift your teeth and jaw.
Brackets may be placed in front or behind the teeth and may be metal or collared. Removable aligners are another option for treating misaligned teeth.
When under treatment, it’s especially important to maintain a balanced diet for the health of your teeth. Avoid too many sugary foods sugar can build up around brackets and permanently stain or damage your teeth.
What’s the difference between Orthodontics and Invisalign
The purpose of orthodontics and invisalign are the same, to straighten your teeth. However, many patients are in a dilemma when it comes to choosing one option. Understanding the basics behind each option will help to guide you in making the most suitable choice for your situation.
Invisalign, unlike traditional braces, is designed to be invisible. Aligner trays made of smooth, comfortable clear plastic are worn over your teeth to gently and gradually move the teeth. Your practitioner will use pictures, x-rays and impressions to create a precise 3-D image of your teeth to configure your trays.
Compared to traditional braces, Invisalign are discrete and unlikely to be noticed by other people. Patients have reported fewer incidents of social anxiety and lowered self esteem when using invisalign. However, aligners can start to become noticeable over the course of treatment as they can become stained by wine, coffee and tar from smoking.
Invisalign aligners tend to be more comfortable than traditional braces, which can be uncomfortable after a recent adjustment. Although data is limited, braces have been shown to produce better results for patients with significantly crooked teeth or those whose teeth are sitting at noticeably different heights.
Comparing the two alternatives is a tough gig. If you are self-conscious, invisalign may appeal to you. The fact that it’s removable so you can drink, eat, floss and brush more naturally may also sound desirable. But if removing the trays to eat or drink anything but water seems inconvenient for you then braces should do the trick.
Children Orthodontics and Color Braces
The American Association of Orthodontists recommends all kids be evaluated for orthodontics by age seven. By this age, an orthodontist can detect problems with emerging teeth and jaw growth. It is recommended to correct dental problems while your child is still growing as treatment may take longer and require more extensive work once they stop growing.
When talking about children braces, consider both functionality and aesthetics. If your kid needs braces, it doesn’t necessarily mean they have to be self-conscious. A bit of color can add personality to the braces and even improve the morale of your child. In fact, colors can be changed every time the braces are adjusted.
Most dental clinics offer a wide range of colors. Whether your kid wants to pick a color that matches their school uniform or their favourite sports team, there is no harm in letting him or her choose.
You can even create a whole new color scheme to fit particular tastes and preferences. The ability to customize your kid’s smile represents a new perception of braces. There is no reason for your kid to get bored with their braces.
Your orthodontist can also offer advice regarding the choice of color. A few guidelines should help you make a wise choice. Darker colors make the teeth look whiter. There are virtually no limits when it comes to color.
It’s never too late to improve your dental health and beautify you smile. About one million Americans and Canadian adults wear adult braces. However many adults underestimate the value of maintaining proper dental health and shy away from wearing braces to straighten their teeth. As a result, orthodontists and general dentists are more familiar with the potential concerns and specific needs of today’s adult patient. Some practitioners even specialize in the diagnosis and treatment of orthodontic problems.
Like children, adults need orthodontic treatment to correct problems such as crooked teeth, underbites and overbites as well as joint jaw disorders and incorrect jaw position. If left untreated, these problems can result in gum disease, tooth decay, earaches and headaches not to mention biting, chewing and speech problems.
Orthodontic treatment for adults may take longer than it does for children and teenagers. The average adult may need to wear braces for 18 months to three years.
What are Lingual Braces
Recent developments in CAD/CAM technology and 3D imaging have facilitated the use of lingual braces, a third option to traditional braces and invisalign. Lingual braces (also known as invisible braces) are attached to the inner surfaces of the teeth facing the tongue. They are practically invisible from the outside.
Lingual braces also have other advantages. They are more efficient and capable than clear aligners for complex movements like changing the heights of teeth, closing extractions spaces and correcting rotations. It’s important to observe oral hygiene when using lingual braces as they are a bit difficult to keep clean.
Creating lingual braces requires making an impression of the teeth and sending it back to the lab to create customized brackets. Once the brackets are complete, the orthodontist uses a specific process to cement the braces behind the teeth. There are various types of lingual braces so it pays to find out the type that would be most effective for you.
Lingual braces may cause tenderness and irritate tehe tongue. You can use wax against the lower teeth to cover the braces and help alleviate soreness. Having a great smile is worth the expense and temporary inconvenience of braces.
How long Orthodontics treatment takes
Due to the unique nature of each mouth and the varying severities of each malocclusion disorder, there is no set timeframe for orthodontic treatment. The length of treatment is subject to several factors such as age, oral health, the specific orthodontic procedure you need to undergo and the severity of your alignment issue. The more sever a problem is the longer it will take for treatment. Some patients will have their matter corrected in a couple of weeks while others require a longer time period.
Typical treatment will usually take between one and three years. Nonetheless, it is essential to observe proper oral care even after treatment. Avoiding alignment issues may also require slight adjustments to habits and norms. While some alignment issues may result from unavoidable matters such as physical disorders and genetics, some issues arise from actions you shouldn’t be doing.
Improper oral hygiene and finger sucking are some for the most common causes of alignment problems. Failing to observe proper oral care such as improper flossing and brushing, and infrequent dental visits can lead to loss of teeth and decay. Constant finger sucking will alter the growth pattern of your teeth and eventually cause biting issues.
To avoid advanced alignment issues, it’s important to frequently visit your dentist and seek orthodontic treatment at the first sign of any dental problems. Feel free to visit smile Angels of Beverly Hills for a orthodontic consultation. We have the best dentist in Los Angeles waiting to give you a consultation.