Fixed Orthodontic Treatment (Braces)
individual has a slightly different occlusion or bite so treatment
techniques vary for individual cases. Braces, the most common
approach, help to slowly move the teeth by applying precise
amounts of pressure over a long and controlled period of time.
As the teeth move, the bony tooth socket resorbs and changes
shape as pressure is being applied. And at the end of the
treatment teeth get adjusted in the new desirable position.
Orthodontic treatment takes place in two phases:
The active treatment phase :
this involves the use of braces or other appliances to move
the teeth into proper alignment and coordination
The retention phase:
this involves the use of a retainer to hold the teeth in
their new position for the long term.
Active treatment phase :
can choose between braces made of metal or ceramic. However,
orthodontic treatment usually is done using stainless-steel
brackets. Ceramic or plastic brackets often are chosen for
Braces work by applying continuous pressure to move teeth
in a specific direction. Braces are worn on average for
one to ane and a half years. As treatment progresses, teeth
change position and the braces must be adjusted.
When applying braces, the orthodontist will attach tiny
brackets to your teeth with special dental bonding agents.
He will then place wires called arch wires through the brackets.
The arch wires, which usually are made of a variety of alloys,
act as tracks to create the path of movement that guides
the teeth. Wires made of clear or tooth-colored materials
are less visible than stainless steel wires but are more
expensive. Tiny elastic bands, called ligatures, also can
be used to hold the arch wires to the brackets.
You can expect to be a little uncomfortable for the first
few days after getting braces. Your teeth may be sore, and
the wires, brackets and bands may irritate your tongue,
cheeks or lips. Most of the discomfort disappears within
a week or two, although you may experience moderate pain
when wires are changed or adjusted. Any abnormal discomfort
may be brought to our notice and can be taken care of.
Retention appliance – purpose and duration
A retainer's purpose is to maintain tooth positions after
corrective orthodontic treatment. Once your occlusion (the
way your upper and lower teeth fit with each other) is corrected,
bone and gums need additional time to stabilize around the
teeth. The recommended length of time for wearing a retainer
varies for each individual being treated. Minimum period
for which the retention appliance is to be worn is one year,
but may be a little longer in certain cases.