Orthodontics refers to a specialized branch of dentistry which corrects poor tooth positioning and improper jaw alignment. This treatment is used to correct both cosmetic issues and problems with chewing function. Genetics and growth rates of your oral structures contribute to alignment problems and crowding.
Your orthodontist will evaluate your jaw and tooth alignment by using the latest technology including comprehensive x-rays of your jaws and supporting structures. Dr. Shaina DiMariano will formulate a treatment plan designed to correct your cosmetic and functional issues and provide you with your new straight smile.
Dr. DiMariano can partner with you and correct issues including:
- Moving crowded or overlapped teeth to give you a cosmetically beautiful smile
- Restoring good chewing function by correcting poor bite alignment
- Closing gaps or spaces between teeth for a great smile
- Positioning twisted or rotated teeth correctly to prevent excessive wear
Now, thanks to modern dental materials and techniques, your orthodontist can offer a number of options to correct jaw issues and straighten your teeth. You can choose from:
- Invisalign, which is the virtually invisible method of straightening your teeth; Invisalign uses clear plastic trays called aligners.
- Conventional orthodontics, using metal brackets and wires; this is what most people think of when they hear the term “braces.”
- Conventional orthodontics, using tooth-colored or clear brackets and wires; this method provides a more cosmetically beautiful look.
- Lingual braces, which are cemented to the tongue sides of your teeth for better aesthetics.
Orthodontic treatment for adults can begin at any time. Just remember it may take a little longer to gradually move your teeth, but you are never too old to benefit from orthodontic treatment.
Orthodontic treatment for children should begin when your child is seven years old because the first permanent molars have erupted, allowing your general dentist or orthodontist to fully evaluate jaw movement and tooth alignment.
The Orthodontic Treatment Process
What can you expect when you have orthodontic treatment? It all depends on what kind of treatment you need. At your first appointment, pictures and radiographic (X-ray) images of your mouth are usually taken, along with impressions of your teeth, so that a model of your bite can be made. This information will be used to develop a treatment plan. It may involve regular braces, with or without elastics (rubber bands). A specialized appliance may also be recommended for a period of time. Here are some of the most commonly used orthodontic appliances:
Metal Braces need no introduction. But you might be surprised to find they're smaller and lighter than ever. They may even offer some customized options, like colored elastic ties on the brackets.
Clear Braces feature brackets made of ceramic or composite materials which blend in with your teeth, making them harder to notice. They're suitable in many situations, but they cost a little more.
Clear Aligners for teens is a series of removable, clear plastic trays that gradually straighten teeth as they're worn (for 22 hours per day). Formerly recommended only for adult patients, they now come with special features — like compliance indicators to tell how often you've been wearing them — that make them appropriate for teens in some situations. The advantage: they're practically invisible!
Lingual Braces offer the most unnoticeable form of orthodontic treatment because they are attached to the back (tongue side) of the teeth, where they cannot be seen at all.
Other orthodontic appliances may be recommended in some cases, where major tooth or jaw movement is needed. They can range from small devices that fit inside the mouth to external headgear. But don't worry: You'll get used to them, and they're temporary — but they provide a long-term benefit in a short time.
Interested in Orthodontic Treatment?
Call DiMariano Family Dentistry in Folsom, CA today at (916) 983-6655 to schedule a consultation!
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