What is an orthodontic treatment?
Orthodontic treatment is a specialty that corrects all irregularities of the teeth, like crooked teeth, poorly aligned teeth, crowded teeth, an irregular bite or gaps. Orthodontic treatment greatly improves the look of your smile and most importantly, your health as well, since crooked teeth are more difficult to clean.
Who needs orthodontics?
Anybody with crooked, missing or crowded teeth can benefit from orthodontic treatment. If your top and bottom teeth are not properly aligned –otherwise known as a malocclusion or a bad bite–, you may experience health problems such as muscle tension, cavities and gum disease. A malocclusion can also affect how you eat and speak. There are many types of malocclusions:
• An underbite: when the bottom teeth overlap the upper;
• An overbite: when the upper teeth overlap the bottom;
• An open bite: when there is an opening between the upper and lower front teeth;
• Gaps between teeth;
• A cross-bite: when your upper front teeth do not line up properly with the lower front teeth;
• Crowded or overlapped teeth.
How long is the treatment?
The duration of orthodontic treatment depends on your age, the technique used and the severity of the malocclusion. Orthodontic treatment generally takes longer for adults than children, and requires regular visits to your dentist or orthodontist. Although braces are commonly used to correct bad bites, other orthodontic techniques can include headgear, retainers and oral surgery.