Forms of braces have been used for centuries, making them a trusted method for teeth straightening. Braces can help give you a healthier mouth and more self-confidence in your appearance. When your teeth are straight, they are easier to clean, which minimizes your risks of tooth decay or gum disease. Learn more about how braces work and what they can treat below.
What are braces?
Braces are comprised of wires, brackets, and bands. The bands will be attached to your back teeth to provide support. Brackets are bonded to the front surfaces of your teeth. Wires are then passed through all of the brackets and fastened to the bands. As the bands tighten, your teeth will start moving into place.
How does the process work?
First, your dentist/orthodontist will take x-rays, pictures, and impressions of your teeth to come up with a treatment plan for you. Then, we’ll install your braces, and you’ll wear them for a few months or a couple of years (depending on the severity of your condition). Every month or so, you’ll come in for adjustments to be sure your teeth are moving correctly.
We may recommend that braces are used in combination with expanders or headgear, if your teeth need extra work. Expanders can widen the arch of your upper jaw, and headgear can help pull the upper jaw back to where it’s supposed to be.
Are braces right for you?
Only your dentist/orthodontist can decide if braces are a good option for your situation. They can be used to treat and fix the following conditions:
- Gapped teeth—If you have had abnormal growth in your jaw, or you are missing teeth, you may have gaps between your teeth. This leaves your gums unprotected and may put you at a higher risk of gum disease.
- Overbite—When your upper jaw extends over the lower jaw, it is called an overbite. This may be a result of poor oral habits or an overdevelopment of your jaw bones. It can cause painful jaw problems if not treated.
- Underbite—When your lower jaw jets out past the upper jaw, it is called an underbite. This can interfere with the normal function of your molars and frunt teeth, causing painful jaw & joint problems.
- Open bite—When your lower teeth and upper teeth don’t touch in some places, it’s called an open bit. This can lead to pain when chewing, speech impairment, or TMJ if untreated. It is often a result of too much thumb sucking as a child.
- Crowding—Sometimes all of your teeth don’t fit within your jaw, causing crowding. If not aligned properly, your teeth may get more crooked, which puts you at a higher risk for gum disease and tooth decay.
- Crossbite—Crossbite occurs when both jaws are not aligned properly. If left untreated, it can cause bone loss, gum disease, and increased wear on the teeth.
Give us a call at Dental Innovations if you would like to learn more about braces or to schedule an appointment.
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