Orthodontics

Orthodontics, tooth straightening, braces and your dentist

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At what age should my child have orthodontics?

From about 7- 9 year olds. This is often treatment that attempts to influence or affect bone growth e.g. palatal dividers or expansion

Most people are able to start orthodontic treatment once the last baby teeth are lost. This varies from about the ages of 11 years to 16 years. Often this treatment involves a person with teeth that are too big to fit into their mouth neatly. Usually braces are used.

¬†Often treatment for adults is longer and more uncomfortable than for children. Because bone growth has slowed down severe problems may involve jaw surgery and braces. Don’t be “put off” seeking treatment because braces can often correct minor irregularities that annoy adults for life.

Why do I need orthodontics?

  • Not enough space for all your teeth to fit in your mouth
  • Your teeth bit into places that will damage other teeth or your mouth in the longer term
  • So you look more beautiful [we already think you are beautiful just the way you are

What is orthodontics and how does it work?

  • Constant light force moves teeth through bone.
  • Teeth can move through the bone they sit in. Bone can change shape and be remoulded. Teeth are harder than bone. As long as you don’t push a tooth hard enough to break/snap it, then the bone will dissolve out of the tooth way and reform as the tooth move.
  • The most common way to apply force to a tooth is by using wires that have a ‘memory’. The wire is bent and connected to a tooth. As the wire straightens to the shape it “remembers” the tooth moves with it.
  • Teeth can move it a fixed plastic mould is worn to place constant pressure on the teeth. To move the teeth in complex ways a series of plastic moulds are made and worn in succession.
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