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Orthodontics: Straight Talk about Crooked Teeth

Orthodontics is the area of dentistry which involves identification, diagnosis and treatment of problems associated with jaw growth and the alignment of teeth. Treatment is varied, however generally involves corrective appliances such as braces, aligners and expanders to improve the position and alignment of teeth and jaws to improve their function and the appearance of the overall facial structures.

What Can Orthodontics Improve?

If you have any of the following, then you may be a candidate for orthodontic treatment:

  • Crowding: when there is not enough space for the teeth to align straight 
  • Spacing: gaps between teeth which may have always been there or have occurred through loss of teeth 
  • Open bite: space between the biting surfaces of the upper and lower front teeth when the back teeth are together 
  • Cross-bite: when the lower teeth sit outside the upper teeth 
  • Over-bite: when the upper teeth are tooth far forward, commonly referred to as ‘buck teeth’ 
  • Under-bite: Lower teeth are too far forward (or upper teeth too far back)- giving a ‘bulldog’ appearance 

orthodontics treamtent 

Reference: Colgate

Benefits of Straight Teeth

The benefits of having a straight smile go way beyond that of improving self-confidence and appearance. Alignment of teeth can significantly affect your overall dental health, having the following benefits:

  • Healthier teeth and gums: being easier to clean results in less plaque accumulation, lower incidence of gingivitis and of periodontal ‘gum’ disease.
  • Lower incidence of bad breathe
  • Improvement in speech: lower incidence of word slurring, mispronunciation, lisping or whistling.
  • Reduction of uneven wear
  • Improvement in general eating: being able to chew food correctly is essential for the first stage of digestion

 

Children Orthodontic Options

Options for children are varied, and the ideal time for diagnosis is between the ages of 7-10 years old. This might seem early, however this is when growth of the jaws is occurring. It is this time when we are able to create space in the jaws so that adult teeth naturally fit and align. Gone are the days of waiting until a child is in mid-teens and removing 4 teeth to create space to align the teeth!

By shifting our focus on earlier treatment we are able to shorten the time it takes to achieve straight teeth and at a lower cost. This often involves:

  • Expanders
  • Partial braces
  • Plates

Each child is different so each treatment plan is tailored specifically to the child’s dental condition. Speak to your child's dentist at their next check-up.

 

Adult Orthodontic Options

At About Smiles Dental Centres we offer two options for adult orthodontic treatments to help you achieve straight teeth.

  • Traditional Braces; or
  • Invisible Braces

Selecting the most suitable treatment option for you is dependent on how crooked your teeth are, bite issues, costs and age.

Regardless of which option is chosen, at About Smiles Dental Centres we are at the fore-front of technology and use a highly accurate digital scanner instead of conventional putty moulds, which in turn makes treatment planning very precise and treatment time is reduced. This computer design is used to create a device which is used to place all of the braces onto the teeth in the most accurate and time effective means possible. No longer do we need to glue each individual bracket to teeth which is time consuming, less accurate and uncomfortable for patients.

In addition to digital scanning, we have made great advances in the design of braces that we use, specifically passive-self ligating braces, which do not use coloured elastic bands. This may seem a minor detail, however when the braces do not require elastic bands to hold the wires in, they allow the wire to sit more freely and this allows for more rapid tooth movement, hence treatment times are reduced and we achieve more beautiful results.

To find out if orthodontic treatment is suitable for you, book a consultation today on (02)9313 6388 for Zetland, (02) 9415 3555 for Chatswood or enquire online.