An orthodontic treatment, mainly knows as “braces”, is the treatment of different types of malocclusions, which is the deviation of the position of the teeth and jaws from the normal, healthy bite/ occlusion.
To be able to treat orthodontic cases, a dentist must follow a full time 3 year post graduate program in a designated university clinic, where he/she treats a great number of complex cases, learning in depth about the aetiology, diagnosis, treatment and prognosis of all possible malocclusions that can be found in clinical practice.
Why would you need orthodontic treatment?
Your dentist will inform you if you would benefit from having an orthodontic treatment. Some problems are more severe than others, and the most common ones are:
- Crowding of teeth (not enough space for them)
- Large overjet (too much space between the upper and lower teeth, teeth sticking out)
- Deep overbite/ open bite
- Crossbite (narrow upper jaw, causing asymmetry of the lower face)
- Premature loss of primary teeth and/or impacted permanent teeth
- Severe skeletal discrepancies (jaws don’t fit together, facial appearance affected)
- Adult cases of lost teeth, in need for a pre-prosthetic repositioning of the remaining teeth
All children are recommended to have an orthodontic consult at the age of 7 years, unless otherwise instructed by the dentist. Both children and adults can have their teeth straightened, there is no age limitation!
Your first visit
Your first visit is a consult. If needed, x-rays are taken (usually an OPT in the clinic) and/or a referral is given to you to have another special xray done at the closest hospital (lateral cephalogram). If the treatment is straightforward, a cost estimation is given to you which includes the costs to be expected in the coming months, as well as a treatment plan and time estimate of your treatment. If the treating doctor needs further information from the xrays stated above, a second consult is needed to discuss thoroughly the options and costs. After this appointment, a session is booked for impressions and photos, so that the planned brackets can be prepared.
Types of braces
There are several types of braces we can use, depending on the problem, on aesthetic considerations and on the budget.
Metal brackets. These are the most commonly used fixed brackets, mainly popular among children and adolescences. They are glued on the teeth and cannot be self- removed from the mouth.