Posted on February 14, 2022
Many of us will, at one point or another, speak with an orthodontist as there are some issues that dentists alone can’t address.
Orthodontists handle an entirely different aspect of oral care, focusing on alignment and crowding of the teeth. However, orthodontics treatments can also address complications that may occur in the gums due to overcrowding as well as jaw issues.
You may be familiar with a few treatments that orthodontists offer, but you may be surprised by the support they can provide. With that in mind, let’s dive into a few of the different treatment options you can expect an orthodontist to offer.
Let’s get braces out of the way first. Traditional braces are fitted to the teeth and meant to correct overcrowding and alignment issues. On average, they are worn for anywhere from one to three years. Usually, there is minimal discomfort expected with braces, and they are fairly easy to handle overall.
Most of the time, people will follow up braces treatment with retainers. These also fit the shape and placement of your teeth. Most are removable, though fixed retainers are also available. While braces realign your teeth, that realignment often needs a retainer to reinforce it.
As an alternative to traditional braces, you may want to discuss Invisalign braces with your orthodontist. These braces are essentially clear and are difficult to detect with the naked eye. They are just as effective as traditional braces, but Invisalign treatment periods can be significantly shorter. These clear aligners must be taken out of your mouth when you eat and otherwise worn for 20 to 22 hours a day. Their maintenance is relatively simple.
If you have severe jaw issues, your orthodontist may determine that you’re a good candidate for orthognathic (jaw) surgery. You may be required to wear traditional braces prior to your surgery to prepare. Your orthodontist may work in tandem with a maxillofacial surgeon to develop a treatment plan to improve your bite, reduce pain, correct speech issues, minimize facial asymmetry, and more.
Even if you don’t need to straighten your teeth, you can visit an orthodontist to be fitted for a mouth guard or even a night guard. Mouth guards protect the teeth during sporting events and other physical activities. While you can obtain a general mouth guard from various retail locations, an orthodontist can custom fit a mouth guard to your bite. Night guards help patients who are prone to teeth clenching or bruxism (teeth grinding) at night, which can cause several dental issues like enamel loss and TMJ pain. Your orthodontist can fit you for a night guard to prevent these problems and help you wake up feeling rested.
If you’re confused about a treatment, have no fear; that’s what orthodontists are for! Always feel free to ask questions. For more information, please contact the Silver Smiles team, today.
No one knows smiles like the orthodontists at Silver Smiles. If you’re ready to get a smile that makes you want to smile, you’ve found the right solution at Silver Smiles Orthodontics.
If you’re in need of general dental work like cavity repair, teeth cleaning, caps, crowns or veneers, give us a call and we’ll be happy to refer you to an outstanding general dentist in your area.