Orthodontist: Procedures And Benefits Of Orthodontic Treatments
Who is an Orthodontist?
An orthodontist is a dental expert specializing in treatments that straighten teeth and realign jaws. At Thumbs Up Dental – Caro Location, orthodontists are responsible for diagnosing and treating oral problems affecting the jaw and teeth function as regards proper alignment.
What Does an Orthodontist Do?
Orthodontists take care of all dental issues affecting the position of your teeth in the mouth relative to the jaw structure. Some of the dental problems an orthodontist corrects are:
- A misplaced midline
- Crooked teeth
- Spaces between teeth – that are unrelated to tooth loss
- Improper bites – can either be a crossbite, overbite, or underbite.
What Procedures Are Considered Orthodontic?
Generally, any treatment that can directly or indirectly affect the alignment of the jaw and the positioning of teeth in the mouth are orthodontic procedure. In dental offices in Caro, MI, the following are the most common procedures in orthodontics:
- Space maintainers – are orthodontic devices that save space in the jawbone, usually after premature tooth loss. Space maintainers are ideal for young children who lose their baby teeth too early. The maintainer saves the space until the permanent tooth starts erupting. It is a preventive orthodontic procedure to prevent misalignments in the future.
- Braces – are the most common orthodontic devices for straightening teeth. They apply continuous pressure on your teeth over a prolonged period to shift them to the desired position. Braces exert controlled pressure to allow you to eat food and speak. However, the procedure will take time, usually up to 24 months, before you realize your desired results.
- Retainers – are orthodontic devices that hold teeth in place, usually after removing braces. Once your teeth shift to a new position, they are vulnerable to moving again when you exert pressure. Therefore, dentists recommend wearing a retainer to hold your position in place, especially during the first year after removing your braces. The best orthodontists in Caro, MI, will have you wearing the retainers for many years, sometimes even for the rest of your life. This way, you never need to restart treatment with braces.
- Palatal expanders – are devices that help expand the jawbone to create space for teeth to fit in your mouth well. Palatal expanders stretch the roof of the mouth, forcing the jawbone to grow and expand.
- Tooth extractions – usually to overcome a crowded mouth. However, not all tooth extractions are orthodontic procedures.
Benefits of Orthodontic Treatments
Unless you have tried orthodontics before, you may not understand why anyone would want to wear foreign devices for prolonged periods. However, orthodontic treatments benefit your dental health in many ways, including the following:
- Treating dental pain – most of the pain you experience in your jawbone is caused by orthodontic problems. An improper bite exerts unnecessary pressure on your teeth, which can strain your muscles, leading to jaw pain.
- Improving oral hygiene – patients with crooked teeth or crowded mouths have a hard time keeping their mouths clean. Brushing or flossing overlapped teeth is harder than you imagine. Over time, plaque and tartar will form on the teeth surfaces hidden under the others.
- Decreasing risk of infections – gum disease and tooth cavities are very common among patients with crowded mouths.
- Improved functionality – your mouth will function better when your teeth sit properly in your jawbone and you achieve a proper bite. Patients speak and eat better after orthodontic treatments.
- Reduced dental accidents – patients who frequently bite themselves have underlying orthodontic problems. Wearing braces will correct your bite and avoid accidental bites.
- Correcting bad oral habits – Dental problems like teeth grinding and thumb-sucking directly relate to orthodontic problems. Orthodontic treatment will correct your teeth’ position and jaw alignment, causing you to improve your dental habits. Besides, headgear that overcomes bruxism at night can also be considered an orthodontic procedure.
- Improved aesthetics – a beautiful smile has a lot to do with how teeth are positioned in the mouth. Orthodontic treatments reposition your teeth straight and every. Further, realigning the jaw improves the facial framework, which manifests aesthetic benefits to your entire face.