Orthodontics is the branch of dentistry that corrects the alignment of the teeth. “Ortho” refers to “straight” or “correct” and “dont” refers to teeth. This may seem like a simple subject, but a dentist providing orthodontic treatment must have a comprehensive understanding of how bone grows, all the different ways in which teeth can be misaligned and the best way to shift them, and the pros and cons of different methods of correcting the alignment.
At Bloomfield Hills Dental Associates, we are pleased to offer our patients our expertise in creating the right treatment plan to bring about excellent results after orthodontia.
Types of Misalignments
When most people think about getting braces, they think of crowding, which is when the teeth are too large for the mouth and overlap. There are many other conditions that can benefit from orthodontic treatment:
- Overbite, the front teeth sticking out too far over the lower teeth
- Underbite, the lower teeth sticking out in front of the top teeth
- Open bite, the back teeth meeting while the front teeth have an opening between them
- Gaps between the teeth that never close up as the bone of the jaw matures
- Misplaced midline, meaning that the midline for the upper and lower teeth do not line up
All of these conditions and crowding can be corrected with orthodontia.
The Benefits of Orthodontic Treatment
It’s obvious that there are benefits to a person’s appearance after orthodontic treatment. Yes, it is wonderful to have an even, pleasant smile and this adds to a person’s confidence and comfort while smiling, eating or laughing. But there are several other reasons related to health and proper function that indicate orthodontia is one’s best choice.
- It’s easier to keep well-aligned teeth clean. Crooked teeth have little nooks and crannies that are hard to brush and may be impossible to floss. This means that these teeth may suffer from decay and gum infections.
- Overbites or underbites can interfere with a person’s speech.
- If the teeth don’t meet correctly, tension can build up in the jaw muscles and cause headaches, jaw pain and muscle spasms.
- Some types of misalignment place abnormal stresses on the teeth which can eventually result in worn or broken teeth and damaged dental work.
- Teeth that don’t meet properly can also make it hard for a person to chew their food thoroughly.
Choices for Teeth Straightening
The two most popular types of braces to correct the alignment of teeth are traditional metal braces and ClearCorrect clear acrylic aligners. Your dentist will make a determination as to which type of braces will offer you the best result in the shortest amount of time.
Metal braces are made of stainless steel wires and metal or ceramic brackets cemented to your teeth. Gradually, these braces are tightened by your dentist to shift your teeth into their ideal positions.
The patient who chooses ClearCorrect aligners will receive a series of numbered aligners and wear each one for about two weeks before switching to the next one. These aligners gently shift the teeth into better alignment.
Do you think you might need orthodontic correction? Find out which system would work best for you. Call Bloomfield Hills Dental Associates today for a consultation at 248-290-2900.