Braces We Think of as “Traditional”
As we learned in the first article about braces and straightening teeth, there are several options open to today’s patient. The invisible braces were covered in our first post entitled, “Cosmetic Dentistry Is More Than a Great Smile”, where we learned those were best for mild to moderate cases of malocclusion (crooked teeth). In this article we will address the traditional braces we more commonly see.
While you know there are options you may discuss with your dentist or orthodontist, should your case be more difficult, your best option may be for traditional wire braces. Pressure is applied to the teeth by periodically tightening the wires attached to small brackets which have been cemented onto your teeth. This gradual tightening ultimately forces the teeth into the position necessary to straighten them. Those wires may be on the front of the teeth, or even in the back.
Depending upon your dentist’s practice, either he will fit and maintain your braces or he will refer you to an orthodontist if he does not include braces in his services. This will depend upon his experience as well as the severity of your case.
Traditional Braces Treatment
Most of us are familiar with young teens wearing braces. This is because the abnormal bite of the youngster is normally evident when he or she is between 6 and 12 years of age. The ideal time for the application of braces is when the child has permanent teeth, but is still in the growing years. Braces are usually worn for one to three years depending upon the severity of the problems.
When the braces are removed a retainer will be worn to maintain the teeth in their new alignment. The time for wearing the retainer will be determined by your dentist orthodontist. Retainers apply the right pressure to keep the teeth aligned, and today’s retainers are significantly more comfortable than they were years ago and generally require much fewer adjustments.
While braces won’t prevent you from eating foods you love, it is true that while wearing traditional wire braces you should be particularly diligent about brushing your teeth and maintaining a healthy diet. Your dentist will provide you with a list of foods to avoid while you have your braces. Sticky foods, popcorn, corn on the cob, whole apples should be avoided due to the chance you’ll have difficultly trying to remove food particles between your teeth and maybe stuck on your braces. The brackets on your teeth are difficult to clean around and these foods can cause a troublesome amount of plaque to collect next to those brackets. Obviously, this condition could lead to tooth decay.
Discover more about orthodontists and the treatments they offer by visiting the American Association of Orthodontists. Follow the advice you receive on caring for your teeth while wearing braces and your smile will stay beautiful and healthy.
Filed under: Cosmetic Dentistry
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