What is Orthodontics?

Orthodontics is a specialist branch of dentistry that deals with the diagnosis, prevention and correction of dental and facial irregularities. It looks at:

  • A bad bite ( or malocclusion)
  • Missing or extra teeth
  • Misaligned teeth
  • Crooked teeth
  • Crowed teeth
  • An overbite
  • An underbite
  • Misaligned jaw position
  • A disorder of the jaw joint

Orthodontic problems are usually treated with Braces.  Brace treatment is usually carried out in children whilst their mouth and jaws is still growing but it is possible to be treated as an adult.  Braces are made from wires or springs, plastic or plastic trays.

Braces can either be fixed, where the braces are glued temporarily or removeable, the brace can be taken out to eat and for cleaning.  The common braces available are:

1)  Invisalign or invisible braces

Invisible aligners (clear trays ) are custom moulded to your teeth and move them over time. It is not obvious that you are having treatment.

2)  Inman Aligners

These are used when just the front teeth need straightening and in very simple cases.

3)  Low-Friction Damon Braces

Friction-free braces, such as the Damon braces system, provide a faster and more comfortable alternative to conventional fixed orthodontic braces.

4)  Simpli5 clear aligner

Only 5 aligners are used to treat very mild malocclusions.

So what causes a Malocclusion (BAD BITE)

It may occur genetically or as a result of the following conditions:

  • Trauma —fractured or knocked-out teeth in a growing child that, on replacement, fuses with the bone that surrounds them, resulting in an improper line up in the jaw
  • Prolonged thumb-sucking or dummy — can result in pronounced protrusion of upper teeth over the lower teeth.
  • Tongue-thrusting while swallowing — can result in pronounced protrusion of upper teeth over the lower teeth.
  • Premature loss of baby teeth — causing the permanent tooth to erupt incorrectly, resulting in crowded or partially erupted teeth.  The teeth next to the primary tooth to move into the vacant space and prevent the eruption of the permanent tooth.