An Orthodontist Can Help Plan Your Smile

Posted on: June 12, 2020

orthodontist St Peters, MO

An orthodontist is someone who specializes in fixing problems with the teeth and jaw, using corrective devices. Orthodontists can fix crooked teeth, crowded teeth, gap teeth as well as alignment and bite problems.

Fixing your smile with the help of an orthodontist

Some of the treatment options an orthodontist can use to fix your smile include:

Traditional braces

These are the most common orthodontic devices that dentists use to straighten teeth because they are the most effective. They consist of brackets, elastic bands and wires. The brackets are bonded to the surface of the front teeth and serve as the anchors for the braces. The wires are run through the brackets and are secured using the elastic bands. They are then tightened to put tension on the teeth, gradually moving them into the desired position.

Traditional braces are made of materials like:

  • Ceramic
  • Plastic
  • Stainless steel
  • Combination of materials

Lingual braces

These are similar to traditional braces. However, instead of the brackets being bonded to the front surface of the teeth, they are bonded to the surface on the back of the teeth, which is why they are also known as invisible braces. Like traditional braces, lingual braces use brackets and wires to gradually move teeth into the desired position.

Clear aligners

These are very popular orthodontic devices that are used by people who want to straighten their teeth discreetly. They are made from a clear plastic material that is customized to fit over an individual’s teeth and are effective in treating a lot of orthodontic problems.

Unlike traditional braces, which are fastened to the teeth and cannot be removed by anyone other than an orthodontist, clear aligners are removable, which allows the user to remove them before eating and when they want to brush their teeth. A tray of aligners is created for the patient to use until treatment is complete. Each aligner should be used for two weeks and then discarded until all the aligners have been used.

Retainers

These are similar to clear aligners. They are used to fix minor orthodontic problems and are also used after orthodontic treatment to prevent the teeth that moved in place during treatment from returning to their former positions.

Temporary anchorage devices

These are mini-screws that are temporarily fixed to the bone in the mouth to provide a point where force is applied to move the teeth. They are used by orthodontists to correct bite problems which would otherwise require surgery. The screws range from 6 to 12 millimeters in length and 1.2 to 2 millimeters in diameter, and they have become more popular in recent years because they provide more predictable tooth control.

Headgear

As the name suggests, this device is worn on the head. Orthodontists use headgear and braces to fix severe bite problems. Even though braces can correct the position of the teeth, headgears help to alter the alignment of the jaw by exerting pressure on the braces using elastic bands, hooks, coils and other attachable appliances. The headgear can also be used to increase space between teeth so other teeth can grow.

Conclusion

An orthodontist can fix most problems that people have with their teeth, helping to restore their smiles. If you have crooked teeth, crowded teeth or other problems with your teeth, consult an orthodontist to get the problem fixed.

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