Orthodontics is a treatment of dental and jaw. It corrects the improper position of the teeth; occlusion is treated both in children and adults.
When orthodontic treatment is needed
The doctor orthodontist determines the necessity of the orthodontic treatment during the consultation.
After assessing the position of the patient’s teeth, jaw, and occlusion, the doctor decides whether orthodontic treatment only is enough, whether surgical treatment or prosthodontics are additionally needed.
It depends on the patient’s complaints, wishes, and needs, as well as from the necessity of treatment. Orthodontics can be applied as the main treatment (when the problem can be solved by the application of orthodontic apparatuses only) or as auxiliary treatment (the teeth in a dental arch are prepared for prosthodontics, orthognathic surgery, before periodontological correction of gums).
Causes of malocclusion:
- It can be genetically inherited
- It can occur due to environmental factors – milk teeth fell out too early, incorrect breathing, etc.
- Due to mismatch in size of maxilla and mandible or their inadequate ratio
- Due to the incorrect position of teeth (crooked, slanted teeth)
- Due to lack of space in the dental arch (crowded teeth)
- Due to non-standard shape and size of dental crowns
Why is the treatment of malocclusion necessary?
- In the case of malocclusion, tooth-surrounding tissues get lesioned when chewing food, inflammation occurs, and bone resorption starts
- As bone resorption progresses, teeth become mobile, gaps between the teeth could occur
- If teeth are in an incorrect position, plaque accumulates rapidly and causes inflammation of tissues that surround the tooth. Then caries damages the teeth.
- Because of malocclusion, the temporomandibular joint could be damaged because due to increased strain
- Expectations of the patient – a gratifying smile and aesthetic appearance
When is orthodontic treatment applied?
- It is critical to notice incorrect growth of jaws and malocclusion in children aged from 9 to 13 years of age because, in such a period, the situation can be corrected with functional orthodontic apparatuses. The treatment lasts about 1,5 years.
- For patients older than 13 years of age, orthodontic plates or systems of braces are applied during the orthodontic treatment. The treatment period lasts from 1 to 2 years.
- There are no age limitations for orthodontic treatment; however, orthodontic treatment for older patients can be more complex and take longer. As time passes, resorption of bone tissue occurs, and in such case, the orthodontic treatment becomes impossible. The procedure lasts from 1 to 3 years.
Orthodontic treatment is applied at any age – to kids, teenagers, and adult patients.
Orthodontic treatment must begin after the proper dental condition is accomplished, and oral hygiene is performed.
Orthodontic treatment methods:
- Removable orthodontic apparatuses are applied to children when treating occlusal problems. The child must be able to cooperate and wear removable appliances for twenty-four hours a day, carry out oral hygiene, and monitor his dental condition responsibly.
- Non-removable orthodontic apparatuses – treatment with braces system for upper and lower dental arches, fixated occlusion treatment apparatuses (orthodontic mini-implants, rapid maxillary expander, Herbst appliance, Forsus appliance). The treatment is applied on permanent teeth, i. e., from 8 years of age. This treatment method allows treating not only occlusal anomalies but also teeth position anomalies.
- Treatment with transparent dental aligners for the straightening of teeth is the latest orthodontic treatment method. Wearing them feels extremely comfortable for the patient and shortens the duration of treatment. They treat occlusion and straighten teeth. Transparent splints must be worn for twenty-four hours a day, but they remain invisible, they are convenient to put on and remove, don’t impede brushing of teeth or nutrition.
- Preparatory treatment for orthognathic surgery or prosthodontics is a treatment applied as adulthood approaches, or form 18 years of age. The treatment is performed by application of braces system, mini implants, or transparent dental aligners. They position teeth into correct positions and allow them to correctly position jaws through orthognathic surgery, to screw in implants, install prostheses or avoid traumatic occlusion, and to extend the longevity of dental restorations.
- Professional oral hygiene with additional cleansing means (interdental brush, single-tuft brush, dental floss, rinsing with oral irrigator) to be performed once in every 3-4 months;
- Nutrition: soft food, do not bite hard food with frontal teeth…
- Protect oral mucosa from scratching with braces or piercing with wire (special wax and is prescribed, and care recommendations provided).