Orthodontics is a specialized segment of dentistry that deals with misaligned teeth and jaws. An orthodontist is a specialized dentist that works to fix crooked teeth, a misaligned bite, misaligned teeth, and teeth with gaps to give their patients a better smile.
A myth: People think that getting braces for straightening teeth is only for teens, but that is not correct. Though younger bones and teeth are easier to work with when it comes to orthodontics, misaligned teeth can be fixed at all ages; you just need to speak with your local orthodontist.
The orthodontist first gets an X-ray of the whole mouth and uses 3D digital models to get an overall impression of the jaw and teeth. Using the 3D digital model, the orthodontist will then plan the steps for your braces.
There are two main parts in a set of braces; brackets and wires. The brackets are fixed on the front of each tooth using a special glue and hardened with a curing light. It may take some time and cause slight discomfort, but otherwise, it’s a rather pain-free process. Then, the arch wire is placed on the brackets and is commonly held in place with bands.
Follow-up appointments to readjust the arche wires are held about every 4 to 8 weeks. You may feel some discomfort with the adjustments. The orthodontists have coloured bands if you like being colourful.
Reality: For people who don’t want to have prominent braces on their teeth, there are options like tooth-coloured ceramic brackets and invisible aligners.
If you have a tricky overbite, overcrowding teeth, or even missing teeth, a visit to the orthodontist can get you that Hollywood smile!