An orthodontic treatment may take a few years to complete from start to finish. In that time, you will be regularly seeing your orthodontist for routine visits and checkups. Because you will have a close client relationship with your orthodontist and their team, it is important to select an orthodontist who you trust and can have a great relationship with.
Here are some top considerations to make when choosing an orthodontist for your treatment and care.
Licensing – Be sure that your orthodontist is licensed to provide orthodontic treatments. In some cases, general dentists have begun to offer some orthodontic treatments such as Invisalign. However, orthodontic treatments require specialized training to ensure the treatments are being done properly. Look for someone with certification and experience in orthodontics.
Options – It may be beneficial to select an orthodontist who offers many different types of treatments. This will ensure that they are able to select the best type of treatment suited to your exact needs. What works for one patient may not work for you – it is best to have options.
Office Procedures – Look for an office that suits you. This includes what hours and days they are open, and how they schedule their appointments. As you will be visiting your orthodontist often, you don’t want to be at an office where their schedule does not mesh well with yours. Additionally, look for an office environment that you can be comfortable in, and be sure that the staff treat you well while you are there. Customer service is always important.
If some of the orthodontists you are considering offer an initial consultation, take advantage of that. These consultations can be a great opportunity to get a real feel for how the office runs its appointments, and whether or not they suit your interests.
Orthodontic care is aimed at correctly poorly positioned teeth in order to correct the bite and improve both the function of the teeth and jaw – and the appearance as well. Quite often, braces are seen on children but in recent years, more and more adults have opted to get braces to fix their smiles as well. Orthodontic treatments can be done successfully at any age, but it is usually easier to intervene at a younger age to help facilitate the arrangement of the teeth before all of the teeth have erupted.
A few options for braces are available on the market, including conventional (metal) braces and invisible (clear aligners) such as Invisalign.
When you picture braces, likely you picture the traditional metal braces. These braces are known as conventional braces. In this method of orthodontics, metal or porcelain brackets are bonded to the front surfaces of the teeth and connected by a wire which varies in tightness depending on the level of treatment. Conventional braces apply a steady pressure on the teeth to move them into optimal position – this type of braces needs to consistently be adjusted in order to maintain the correct pressure levels.
The clear aligner style of braces offers a more discreet method of aligning the teeth. This type of braces does not use brackets or wire, but instead uses clear aligners that fit directly on the teeth and are removeable. Clear aligners are typically changed out every couple of weeks for the next fit – which puts added or changed pressure variations to encourage tooth movement into the correct place.
Alignment using clear aligners tends to be quicker than with traditional braces, but relies entirely on patient compliance as the aligners can be taken off of the teeth. Additionally, clear aligners may not always be possible depending on the level of treatment needed.
Buck teeth is a term that refers to a malocclusion condition that involves asymmetrical teeth, leading to other dental issues such as off-balance teeth positioning, severe teeth misalignment, and a deformed jaw structure in severe cases.
Problems with Buck Teeth
Misalignment of the teeth and jaw can lead to several health issues, including:
- Defective Chewing, caused by molars overlapping within the mouth. Defective chewing affects digestion, and may also cause food to become accumulated within the mouth – leading to plaque and decay.
- Speech Impediments. Misaligned teeth may cause lisping and improper pronouncing of certain syllables such as S and F.
Because of the teeth being aligned, other teeth within the mouth also become affected and align too closely or grow in different directions, leaving gaps. In severe cases, dental restoration techniques may be required to deal with the issues that result from buck teeth.
Fixing Buck Teeth
Depending on the type and positioning of the teeth, it may be fixed in one of a number of ways, including with or without braces. In children, either invisible or traditional metal braces are commonly used to fix buck teeth. In adults, or more severe cases, a surgery to align the upper and lower jaws may be recommended.
Buck teeth usually begin to appear early in childhood, but can also affect people later in life if they are due to genetic reasoning. It can be crucial to seek help for suspected buck teeth before symptoms worsen.
Many millions of people avoid going to the dentist because of fear and anxiety around getting dental work done. Often, the fear is anxiety about experiencing pain, or from negative past experiences. However, often the fears are unfounded and can be easily overcome.
If dental problems go unaddressed due to anxiety, the problem can often get worse – beginning a cycle of additional pain, and therefore additional anxiety.
If you are experiencing anxiety about going to the dentist, your first step should be to discuss the anxiety you are having with your dentist. In many cases, having an open communication plan with your dentist can lower your levels of stress.
For those who are nervous for an upcoming dental visit, try these tips to help with the anxiety:
- Speak with your dentist about your fears;
- Focus on your breathing – regular, deep, slow breaths while you are having your dental visit can help to lower stress;
- Listen to calming music;
- Use hand signals with your dentist – sometimes not being able to openly communicate during a procedure can cause anxiety;
- Choose an appointment time that is least stressful to you. Don’t rush or cause yourself extra pressure.
For those who experience anxiety about going to the dentist, simply booking an appointment can be an awful experience. Try to have open communication with your dental team about how you are feeling – they can guide you to having a better dental visit experience.
The dental community agrees that the health of your mouth reflects the condition of your entire body. Poor dental health often is indictive of other health problems. This is why visiting your dentist regularly can not only keep your smile looking great, but also may provide useful information as to whether or not you may be at risk for certain chronic health conditions. Research has shown that good dental health can help to prevent some diseases from occurring.
The Impact of a Healthy Mouth
There is a strong relationship between gum disease and certain health complications such as stroke and heart disease. Research shows that the majority of systemic diseases such as diabetes and certain cancers actually have oral indicators such as:
- Swollen gums;
- Mouth ulcers;
- Dry mouth; and
- Excessive gum problems.
If a patient sees their dentist for regular examinations, their dentist may be their first provider to ake note of a health problem in the early stages.
Additionally, improper oral care can lead to health problems such as:
- Tooth and facial pain;
- Heart and other major organ problems;
- Digestion problems.
Seeing your dentist regularly and taking good care of your teeth can help to keep your entire body in good health. Your dentist will also have a chance to detect other potential problems such as poor nutrition, growth and development problems, and improper jaw alignment, among other potential issues.
At home, keeping a healthy mouth should include the following:
- Brushing twice per day;
- Flossing daily;
- Eating a healthy diet;
- Avoiding cigarettes and tobacco products; and
- Visiting the dentist regularly.
Keeping a healthy mouth can help you to also help you to keep the rest of your body healthy as well. Be sure to regularly visit your dentist to help watch for any indicators of other potential health problems, and keep your dentist updated with any changes to your health.
Nowadays, patients who require braces to align their teeth have many options to choose from. Options will vary from patient to patient, depending on what their dentist recommends – but typically there are two options: metal braces or clear braces. It is important to look at the benefits of both types of braces before making a final decision on what type is preferred.
Traditional Metal Braces
These braces are made out of high-grade stainless steel, and are one of the most widely chosen options for aligning teeth. Newer designs are sleeker and smaller than their previously used counterparts. Patients can choose fun colours for the banding, which makes them popular with kids and younger dental patients. The advanced bracket systems make traditional metal braces more comfortable than ever, while still being the top choice by dentists for the alignment of many mouths. Additionally, metal braces tend to be very affordable when compared to other options.
Clear Ceramic Braces
Clear braces made of ceramic which is made the be the same colour as the tooth are intended to blend with the natural look of the patient’s teeth. This type of braces can be used for any age group, and they tend to have a fairly quick turnaround time for results. Treatment using ceramic braces may also include use of clear or white bands or wires that blend with the tooth colour. The cosmetic appeal of this braces type make them popular for adults.
Both clear ceramic braces and traditional metal braces are good options for aligning teeth. Both options are generally available for all ages of dental patient, and one may be recommended over the other. Work with your dentist to determine the best treatment plan for your mouth.