Dental braces (also known as orthodontic braces) are devices used in dentistry that align and straighten teeth. Conventionally metal braces were used for a long time but recently newer techniques have been developed. Invisible and lingual braces are equally efficient and offer more confidence as they cannot be seen by others.
Dr. Kirti Gowd, Oral & Maxillofacial Orthodontics and Dentofacial Orthopedics, a member of American Board of Orthodontics, trained in lingual and invisible braces, with over 10 years of experience as an orthodontist, has been successful in bringing back confident smiles to many. She is the best orthodontist in Hyderabad.
How Braces Work
Braces are used to straighten the teeth or to align the teeth. This application of braces helps loosen the tooth from its original place and then shifts it to a new position. A tooth will usually move by about a millimeter per month during orthodontic treatment, but there is high individual variability. Orthodontic mechanics can vary in efficiency which partly explains the wide range of response to orthodontic/braces treatment.
Growing kids have abnormal habits like tongue thrusting, thumb sucking, finger sucking, lip biting and more that can alter the jaw shape while growing. . minor or major respiratory problems can also change the shape of the jaws due to constant mouth breathing .these habits have to be terminated as soon as possible for normal growth. posterior occlusion (bite) is established when the first 6-year permanent molars erupt. At that time, one can evaluate the 3 dimensional relationships of the occlusion, as well as discover any abnormal shifting of the lower jaw during function. Incisors will begin to erupt and problems can be detected such as crowding, adverse habits, overbites, openbites, and some facial asymmetries. When treatment is necessary, the orthodontist can guide the growth of the jaws and guide the erupting permanent teeth. For some, a timely screening will lead to significant treatment benefits; for some, an immediate benefit is a parent’s peace of mind. these habits are treated with habit breaking appliances.
Habit breaking appliances
Habit breaking appliances are specific, custom fabricated appliances which may be removable or fixed and are mostly worn inside the mouth to help a child to discontinue a detrimental thumb or finger sucking habit or to improve a bad tongue posture which may cause undesirable teeth position and affect growth of facial bones. These appliances are worn until the child completely stops a particular habit. These appliances can be used separately or along with fixed braces.
What are the benefits of early treatment?
For those patients who have clear indications for early intervention, early treatment presents the opportunity to:
- Lower risk of trauma to protruded upper incisors.
- Influence jaw growth in a positive manner
- Harmonize width of the dental arches
- Improve eruption patterns of permanent teeth
- Correct harmful oral habits
- Improve esthetics and self-esteem
- Simplify and/or shorten treatment time for later corrective orthodontics
- Reduce likelihood of impacted permanent teeth
- Improve some speech problems
- Preserve or gain space for erupting permanent teeth
You are never too old braces. but yes age does matter. younger patients respond to treatment faster than older teens or fully grown adults because the bones supporting the teeth are more mouldable in children .
As we have become more and more self conscious, Many adults are seeking braces to improve the appearance of their teeth and looks, as a beautiful and healthy smile is what is noticed first.. The techniques used in the movement of adult teeth are similar to those used in children.
Corrections in the teeth or dentition can be done with braces. However, certain conditions cannot be resolved with braces alone, because an adult’s facial bones are no longer growing. Sometimes, jaw surgery is required to obtain the ideal result.
Gaps between teeth, crowding, protruding front teeth, and teeth in abnormal positions are problems that may be corrected in the adult by orthodontic treatment .The health of teeth, gums and supporting bone, as well as harmonious jaw relationships, are key factors in determining the possibility of improving one’s appearance through orthodontic treatment.
With modern technologies and materials used in Orthodontics today, it is never too late to consider braces treatment for an adult. Braces are not only useful for cosmetic improvement but also it can treat your jaw joint function. If you are planning to get crowns, veneers or other restorative treatments for either cosmetic or functional reasons, braces may even be recommended to obtain the maximum result, because braces places teeth where they should be. Treatment time is not a big issue anymore as we are able to complete treatment in a minimal amount of time, often one year depending on the case type.
Types of Braces
- Metal Braces
These are the traditional stainless steel braces. however we also use the mini bracket system which are smaller in size and hence less visible and so you don’t have a notorious metal mouth.
- Invisible Braces
Invisible braces serve as a cosmetic alternative to traditional metal braces by blending more with the natural color of the teeth and having a less conspicuous or hidden appearance. Typically, these brackets are made of ceramic or plastic materials and function in a similar manner to traditional metal brackets.
- Lingual Braces
These are braces fixed on the inner surface of teeth. The traditional ones are a little uncomfortable as it is in contact with the tongue. But relax , the modern lingual braces are custom made with a gold base and are more sleek in design as it takes up the tooth shape and hence are more comfortable.
- Ceramic Braces
These are transparent braces which are least visible in mouth. they are a very good alternative for those who are not comfortable to wear metal braces. Ceramic braces never change colour, though the rubber bands used to hold the wire might get a little stained. these bands are changed every appointment.
- Self Ligating Braces
These braces do not need rubber bands to hold the wire to the bracket and hence are more hygienic and faster than normal braces. there are metal and ceramic types in these braces too.
Procedure for Getting Braces
The first step is to determine whether braces are suitable for the patient. If braces are appropriate, an appointment is set up where X-rays, models, and impressions are made. The records are then analyzed to determine the problems and the course of action.
Typical treatment time varies from 6 months to two and a half years, depending on the complexity and type of problems. Orthognathic surgery may be required in extreme cases.
Teeth to be braced will have an adhesive applied to help the cement bond to the surface of the tooth. A metal wire will be threaded in between the brackets and affixed with elastic or metal ligatures. Wires are bent, shaped and lightened frequently to achieve the desired results.
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