A) What is Orthodontics ?
The process of straightening teeth is called Orthodontics. It may be loosely defined as the science of moving teeth, straightening irregular, crowded or improperly placed teeth. Dentist who are especially qualified in this area of expertise are referred to as Orthodontist.
B) Who requires Orthodontic treatment ?
Anyone with misaligned or irregular teeth, crowded, overlapping teeth or teeth with spaces between them or with discrepancy between the upper and lower jaw sizes, may require orthodontic treatment.
C) Why do we need orthodontic treatment?
Normal alignment not only contributes to oral health, but also goes a long way in the overall wellbeing and personality of an individual. Correct tooth position is an important factor for aesthetics, function and for overall preservation of dental health.
D) What is the scope of orthodontic treatment?
Orthodontic treatment is done by moving the teeth to ideal locations by applying appropriate forces on them. Apart from moving the teeth, it is within the scope of an orthodontist to utilize the growth potential of a child and apply appropriate forces that are capable of restraining, promoting or redirecting the growth of upper and lower jaws. By doing all this, the treatment by itself brings about favorable changes in the facial appearance of an individual.
E) At what age treatment can be done?
This is the most important question pertaining to orthodontic treatment. There is a general misconception that this treatment can be done only on growing children. The treatment can be done at any age, provided the bone condition is good. So anyone can get this treatment done at any age. The American Association of Orthodontists recommends all children get a check-up with an orthodontic specialist no later than age 7.
Orthodontists can spot subtle problems with jaw growth and emerging teeth while some baby teeth are still present.
While your child’s teeth may appear to be straight, there could be a problem that only an orthodontist can detect.
A check-up may reveal that your child’s bite is fine. Or, the orthodontist may identify a developing problem but recommend monitoring the child’s growth and development, and then, if indicated, begin treatment at the appropriate time for the child. In other cases, the orthodontist might find a problem that can benefit from early treatment.
Early treatment may prevent or intercept more serious problems from developing and may make treatment at a later age shorter and less complicated. In some cases, the orthodontist will be able to achieve results that may not be possible once the face and jaws have finished growing.
Early treatment may give your orthodontist the chance to:
1. Guide jaw growth
2. Lower the risk of trauma to protruded front teeth
3. Correct harmful oral habits
4. Improve appearance
5. Guide permanent teeth into a more favorable position
6. Create a more pleasing arrangement of teeth, lips and face
Through an early orthodontic evaluation, you’ll be giving your child the best opportunity for a healthy, beautiful smile.
If your child is older than 7, it’s certainly not too late for a check-up.
GMC Super Speciality Dental Centre
GMC Hospital, Ajman