Orthodontic treatment usually involves wearing a brace (appliance). This puts gentle pressure on specific teeth to move them into the right place and usually takes one to two years, depending on the severity of the problem.
Teeth straightening is usually carried out in childhood. Malocclusions can be successfully corrected in adults but the treatment may take longer. To get the best results from orthodontic treatment, you need to wear the brace as instructed, go to all of your appointments and take special care of your teeth.
Sometimes, if there isn't enough room in your mouth, you may need to have teeth taken out before orthodontic treatment. If the condition is very severe, you may need to have jaw surgery.
Getting an orthodontic assessment
Calvin Clarke is also an expert orthodontics with over 20 years of experience. In addition, Dr. Clarke is certified in utilizing the professional invisalign treatment. In general, most dentist will refer their patients to yet another specialist (orthodontic) due time or lack of skillset. If you are a current or future patient of Dr. Clarke you are in very capable hands. Dr. Clarke will assess your orthodontic needs in addition to all of the other services we provide.
The best time to have an orthodontic assessment is after you have lost your milk teeth but before all your adult teeth come through, usually around the age of 10 or 11. By this time your jaw has grown enough to see whether your new adult teeth will have enough room to come through.
Dr. Clarke always does a professional and detailed dental examination. You may have X-rays of your teeth taken. These x-rays will illustrate to Dr. Clarke how your facial bones and teeth are developing. He may also make some moulds of your teeth and take some photographs.
If you have any decayed teeth, these will need to be treated by Dr. Clarke before orthodontic treatment starts.
Treatment is only successful if you're motivated to look after your teeth. Therefore, if you have lots of decayed teeth or your oral hygiene is poor, the orthodontist probably won't recommend any treatment involving braces. Orthodontic treatment is time-consuming and you need to be motivated to get the best results. It can also make your teeth more difficult to look after so you will need to take extra care with your oral hygiene.
Younger children may be asked to come back for treatment when they're older. Sometimes, crowded teeth straighten out on their own as the child's face grows. If this happens, Dr. Clarke may want to assess your child again when he or she has grown.
If treatment is recommended, Dr. Clarke will explain your treatment options, including:
- Most Suitable brace type.
- The treatment and how long it will take.
- List of activities that you'll need to do to help achieve the best results.
Surgical orthodontic treatment
If the bones of your jaw are incorrectly positioned, you may need to have jaw surgery (orthognathic surgery) to move them into the right position so that your teeth can bite together properly.
This kind of treatment is generally reserved for adults who have severe malocclusions resulting in speech problems, difficulty eating or psychological trauma. Ask Dr. Clarke if you would like more information about jaw surgery.