‘A smile is a curve that sets everything straight.’- Phyllis Diller and perfectly aligned teeth will only compliment your personality. Many people have crooked teeth which often cause decreased self-confidence, might also make oneself feel insecure about his/her smile while talking to their friends, colleagues, important meetings, and family. Therefore affecting our lives every day unknowingly. But many of those who have malaligned teeth may question that why do I have crooked teeth and what exactly causes malalignment of the teeth? How to get them straight and why to get them straight? is frequently asked questions by the patients. ORTHODONTICS is a field entirely dedicated to deal with malaligned teeth, an improper bite, and the facial structure of the patient.
ORTHODONTICS is a branch of dentistry that specialization degree acquired after under graduation. These specialized dentists are called ORTHODONTISTS. They deal with crooked teeth and also deal with issues such as spacing in the teeth, small or large jaw size. Orthodontic treatment may take a year or more depending upon the amount of crowding present. Crowding or spacing of teeth creates abnormal contact areas between two teeth, which promotes plaque accumulation and food lodgement which might lead to periodontal diseases and tooth caries. Therefore going under orthodontic treatment can be extremely beneficial.
Why choose orthodontic treatment over any other alternate dental treatment
Preserve natural tooth structure instead of correcting malaligned teeth with expensive aesthetic dental treatments such as crowns, veneers, or laminates which require removal of some amount of sound tooth structure.
Easy to maintain oral hygiene crowded or malaligned teeth create abnormal contact between adjacent teeth where it is easy for the food particles to get accumulated .hence this might lead to caries in such areas.
Hence, straight or properly aligned teeth Promotes the overall health of gums and teeth as they are easy to clean and maintain. The chances of food getting stuck around teeth are also less as smooth straight teeth encourage easy flushing away of any food particles from the teeth surface.
Proper functional occlusion in some cases has a crossbite, or lower and upper teeth do not close in the proper manner thus providing the limited function of the teeth during chewing and biting.
Misaligned teeth can create unbalanced forces upon themselves during chewing thus leading to the mechanical wearing away of the tooth structure. chances of such wear and tear are reduced after the orthodontic treatment.
Increased Self-esteem straight teeth make our smile more aesthetically pleasing and one feels an increase in her / his confidence levels after the orthodontic treatment.
How does an orthodontist straighten our teeth?
Things that are used by the orthodontist during orthodontic treatment are
- Orthodontic brackets
- Orthodontic wire
- Elastics, springs, etc
- Orthodontic implants if required
- Rubber bands
Your orthodontist will first take a diagnostic impression and make an exact replica of your current teeth and jaw setting from dental plaster or dental stone material called a study model. He / She will study your teeth model and make a proper treatment plan.
Then the dentist will prepare your teeth by drying, etching, and apply a bond agent to each individual teeth. the brackets are bonded to each tooth with the help of composite resin material. There are types of brackets that are appropriately used as per the requirement. these brackets are placed on both upper and lower teeth.
Once the brackets are placed, two upper and lower orthodontic wire is placed which passes through each bracket and which are held on the brackets with the help of rubber bands.
Orthodontic treatment includes many other components such as traction elastics, springs, orthodontic implants, etc which are used as required.
Orthodontic treatment can take about a year or more .once the treatment gets over, the patient is asked to use retainers as teeth have a tendency to move back to their previous position. retainers are to be used at least for 6 months. Types of retainers are fixed retainers, removable retainers, or clear retainers.