It’s never too late to achieve a beautiful smile
Orthodontic treatment is the process of correcting your teeth alignment. Having well aligned teeth improves not only your appearance but can also significantly improve oral health and function.
Orthodontic treatment can be safely done at any stage of life—it is not just for children and teenagers. Fixed braces are the most common method of orthodontic treatment for younger patients, while clear orthodontic aligners (like InvisalignTM or Clear Correct) are very popular among adults.
In young children, removable appliances (also known as ‘orthodontic plates’) can sometimes be used to improve the arrangement of teeth, by harnessing and gently guiding the growth of the young jaw bones. The use of these appliances in some cases may reduce the length of treatment with fixed braces or eliminate the need for braces later on in a child’s life.
When is orthodontic treatment needed?
Orthodontic treatment may be necessary for a number of reasons. You may have:
- difficulty chewing
- a cross bite (where your upper front teeth rest behind or inside your lower front teeth)
- a deep bite (your upper front teeth completely cover your lower front teeth)
- an open bite (your front teeth do not touch when biting together)
- crowded, overlapping, or spaced-out teeth
- your upper and lower teeth may not line up, or may look like they are on an angle.
Your National Dental Care dentist will complete a full dental examination, including x-rays, photos, and impressions or scans of your teeth. Assessment and planning the best treatment option may take several appointments.
If your teeth are not suitable for treatment by a general dentist, your National Dental Care dentist will refer you to a specialist orthodontist for more complex treatment.
How long does it take?
Most people wear braces or clear aligners for between one and two years. If you are only looking for a minor cosmetic improvement, this treatment may take between six to nine months, depending on the severity of the problem.
After your braces are removed or your clear aligner treatment is completed, you may need to have a permanent retainer cemented onto the inner side of your teeth and issued with a removable retainer to wear during the night, to make sure your teeth do not move back into their original position.
How does Invisalign and Clear Correct work?
Invisalign and Clear Correct use a series of clear and removable plastic teeth moulds to realign and re-space crooked or crowded teeth. They are a particularly effective orthodontic option if you don’t want obvious braces during the course of treatment.
How long does Invisalign take?
Invisalign and Clear Correct treatment can take between six and 24 months for full correction of teeth, depending on how severe the problem is. They are less irritating than conventional metal braces, and more inconspicuous.
What about braces?
Conventional braces are also available. Most patients may also need a permanent retainer cemented behind the teeth or a removable retainer for use at night. Both these help prevent teeth from moving back to the original imperfect shape.
The right treatment for you
At National Dental Care, we need to understand your end goals and why you wish to correct the alignment of your teeth. This way we will have a better idea of what type of treatment would suit you (fixed braces or clear aligners), what duration of treatment would be appropriate and achievable, and what type of result you are expecting.
Newer x-ray technologies like cone beam computerised tomography (CBCT) are used to examine the teeth, jaw, and bones through 3D imagery. This provides an overview of your symptoms to further identify appropriate orthodontic steps.
Knowing this, your National Dental Care dentist can present you with a number of appropriate options and in some cases even give you a preview of the final outcome before commencing treatment.
Any surgical or invasive procedure carries risks. Before proceeding with a surgical or invasive procedure, you should seek a second opinion from an appropriately qualified health practitioner.
Who can get orthodontics?
It’s never too late to achieve a beautiful straight smile.. Braces aren’t just for kids any more. Tooth alignment can be changed at any age if your gums and bone structure are healthy. Having orthodontic treatment can dramatically improve your appearance and self-esteem. Improving the health of your teeth and gums is equally important. Crooked teeth and a bad bite can contribute to gum and bone loss, tooth decay, abnormal wear of the tooth enamel and surfaces, headaches and jaw joint (TMJ/TMD) pain.
What type of orthodontics treatment is available?
The really good news? The days of metal bands wrapped around each of your teeth individually are long gone! The new techniques and appliances National Dental Care uses greatly reduce discomfort levels, decrease the number of visits and shorten treatment time. There are also several options available, including braces and clear aligners. During your initial examination, we will be able to determine the best possible treatment for your individual needs. We can also outline the treatment plan, the timeframe required and the approximate cost. Metal braces are made of high-grade stainless steel. Clear aligners are made of translucent material. They are both very popular with adult patients.
What happens after I have my braces removed?
When we remove your braces, we will begin the retention stage of your treatment. Your final orthodontic result depends on you wearing your retainers, so follow through with the work you’ve put in so far. Remember to remove your retainer before eating, and brush your retainer before placing it back in your mouth. Alternatively, we can fit you with a permanent fixed wire retainer on the inner surfaces of your teeth.
What are the benefits of Orthodontic treatment?
As we all know, straight teeth can have a big influence on the aesthetic appearance of our smile. Orthodontics specialises in the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of dental and facial irregularities in children and adults. Crooked and crowded teeth can be more difficult to clean and maintain, contributing to tooth decay, eventual gum disease and tooth loss. So orthodontics plays an important role in reducing the need for future dental treatment. Other orthodontic problems can contribute to abnormal wear of tooth surfaces, inefficient chewing function and excessive stress on gum and bone. Misalignment of the jaw joint can even cause chronic headaches or pain in the face or neck.