>As a family dentist, we use orthodontics to straighten teeth and improve the oral health of our patients. While most people associate orthodontics as a procedure for vanity, this solution is equally important to your health. Teeth that are crooked are more likely to get food stuck in between them, have plaque buildup, and get cavities. Additionally, if your teeth are crooked or your jaw is misaligned, you may be putting additional pressure on certain teeth, causing them to wear out more quickly than the others. Straightening them can help prevent some of these common problems while also giving you a beautiful smile. If you are interested in getting started or learning more, we encourage you to call our office and schedule a consultation. In the meantime, here are three things you should know about orthodontics:
You are in control.
In years past, there was only one way to straighten teeth: metal braces. These are still used because they are highly effective and the best solution for children. Fortunately, for many people, there are now additional solutions as well. For example, some people do not need a full braces treatment, but simply need to create a little more space in their mouth using spacers or expanders. Others, preferring a more discreet solution, can straighten teeth using clear aligners. The aligners look like a clear plastic retainer, and they surround the teeth. Both aligners and braces work using the same basic concept: pressure is applied consistently, and this pressure moves teeth into position. With braces, this is done using a series of brackets and wires that are adjusted regularly. With aligners, you simply switch them out every couple of weeks for the next one in the series. If neither of these options sounds good to you, we can also provide you with cosmetic solutions to address some basic challenges. For example, in our family dentist office, we can close gaps in between teeth using dental veneers. The key to remember is that you are in control of your orthodontics treatment and can decide the solution that you feel will work best for your goals and your lifestyle.
Your routine may be impacted.
The orthodontics solution you select will have some impact on your daily routine. If you wear metal braces, the impact will be the most significant, since you will need to adjust how and what you eat along with how you brush and floss your teeth. This can take some getting used to, but it is important. When wearing clear aligners, the adjustments are less severe, since they come out to eat and brush. However, you will need to become accustomed to limiting how frequently you snack, since you are not supposed to eat with aligners in and they need to remain in place for 22 hours per day. As a family dentist, we can provide you with tips and resources to help you make the transition.
It takes time.
As a family dentist, we know that it takes time for orthodontics to work. Teeth must be moved steadily, yet gradually. Otherwise, your teeth and roots could become damaged. You can help keep your treatment on schedule by keeping your teeth clean and healthy, having them professionally cleaned bi-annually, and keeping all of your scheduled dental appointments.
Call our Leawood, KS, dental office to make an appointment with a dentist who may be able to help you find out more about this topic, and improve your oral health.