What is orthodontics?
Orthodontics is a specialty of dentistry targeted at the diagnostic, avoidance and treatment of dento-facial variances and dental malposition. The methodical term to describe these problems is called “malocclusion”. Orthodontic treatments such as braces help mend teeth that are crooked or that do not fit together properly. By resolving these problems, orthodontics can also assist with keeping your teeth healthy. Crooked teeth can be harder to clean, putting you at risk for cavities, gum disease and loss of teeth. Using X-Rays for diagnosis, our dental professional will decide if orthodontic treatment will be suitable for you.
What are the early symptoms of orthodontic problems?
Although initially, determining if any treatment is necessary maybe difficult to evaluate, and the following symptoms may help in prompting you to seek our orthodontic advice.
- If you see any signs of crooked teeth, overlapping teeth or gaps between your teeth you may need orthodontic treatment.
- Another way to test is to simply, bite all the way down, but keeping your lips open so you can see your teeth. Does your front top teeth line up with the bottom? Do your top teeth jut out away from the bottom teeth? Are the top teeth behind the bottom teeth? All these are pointers for possible orthodontic treatment.
- Observe the alignment of your jaw. If you notice the jaw shift off center when you bite down, or if you also notice any misalignment or position shifts of the jaw, it may be due to a skeletal problem, which needs early orthodontic intervention.
Am I too old for orthodontic treatment?
There is no age limit to consider orthodontics. The basic biological progression that permits the teeth to transform is the same for all healthy individuals, irrespective of their age. In most adults, the nonappearance of growth may make it essential to use different treatment methods or to have different treatment objectives than with a children or teenagers.
The recent state of the art technologies that we have introduced at our practice, is predominantly suited for individuals by making treatment more efficient, easily reachable and contented than ever before and it is never too late to receive orthodontic treatment.
How long will my orthodontic treatment last?
In general, orthodontic treatments can last between 12 and 30 months. The newer technologies that we use, at Montreal International Clinics allow us to treat a majority of the patients 4 to 6 months faster than with standard approaches and we often complete corrections in 15 to 18 months . A clinical evaluation following your appointment, with our orthodontist will give you an estimate of duration of your proposed treatment.
Can remaining dental growth correct my orthodontic problem?
It is very unlikely that outstanding growth can correct orthodontic problems. Growth aids the orthodontist in treating skeletal imbalances and growth alone will not solve the issue. Using orthodontic appliances during treatment allows us to optimally utilize the growth potential to try to attain better jaw relationships. In certain cases where the growth pattern is abnormal, any supplemental growth may in fact worsen the problem. Hence it is important that such problems be evaluated early by an orthodontist.
How often will I need to visit the clinic during orthodontic treatment?
The frequency of appointments is determined by the particular needs of each patient and the progression of the corrective treatment. Many patients with braces will be seen every 6 to 12 weeks. However, if a particular situation that requires to be closely monitored, visits will be scheduled accordingly. Children and Teenagers kept under observation (without any corrective appliances in their mouth), are seen every 9 to 18 months depending on their dental growth and development.
Can I have braces if I have missing teeth or crowns and bridges?
Yes you can. A tooth with a crown or any type of reinstatement can be moved just like any other tooth, as long as its roots and surrounding dental tissues are healthy and intact. When there are missing teeth, orthodontics can improve the alignment of the remaining teeth and make enhanced tooth replacement options. In some cases where one or many teeth are missing, orthodontics can partially or completely close the gaps left by these teeth. This can reduce or eliminate tooth replacement costs for the patient after orthodontics.
Does getting braces hurt?
Generally, having braces is not considered painful to many patients. It is possible however that after the initial visits, such as when corrective braces are first put on the teeth or when key corrective adjustments are made, that some teeth become sensitive for a few days. We recommend that patients take light analgesics to relieve discomfort if required.
Will I need to continue my dental check-ups during orthodontic treatment?
Yes, as it is extremely important that you continue visiting your dentist often throughout your orthodontic treatment as per recommendation of the dentist. Braces and many orthodontic appliances should not stop your dentist from doing any dental inspections and cleanings. If necessary however, we are able remove parts of the corrective appliances if your dentist requires access to some teeth, for specific treatment.
Will I need to protect my teeth during contact sports?
Wearing braces or most orthodontic corrective appliances will not prevent you from doing sports but it is important that you wear a protective mouth guard during contact sports. If you practice a contact sport where there are risks of injuries (football, rugby, lacrosse, hockey, soccer, basketball, etc.) it is highly recommended that you wear a mouth guard. In addition to protecting the appliance, mouth guards can lower the chances of having head injuries and jaw joint problems following heavy sport contacts.