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Frequently asked questions

 

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- Why is orthodontics needed? What happens when crooked teeth are not treated?

First of all 2 things need to be clarified:

The condition of having misaligned teeth is not life threatening. Moreover this condition does not need urgent medical intervention, in the contrast with a toothache. So the question can be posed -what happens if crooked teeth are not treated?

1. Many professional data suggest that a nice smile, straight teeth teeth have a positive effect on our personality. Thus on the contrary, cross teeth, non-attractive smile can be destructive on the personality. So one reason to have orthodontic treatment is aesthetics and its effect on our self-esteem.

2. Also it's easy to accept, that cross teeth are more difficult to clean, which can lead to dental cavities and gum inflammation.

3. Teeth that are not standing properly can get such a load during chewing, which might loosen or harm the teeth.

4. Crowded teeth might cause weaker chewing capacity, which might cause digestive problems.

5. Misaligned teeth or un proper relationship between upper and lower teeth and jaws teeth can affect speech..

6. One of the most interesting aspects of this issue is the importance of the relationship between the upper and lower teeth (occlusion or bite). According to several studies malocclusion (un proper occlusion) might cause different symptoms, either at the TMJ (temporomandibular joint), or at the teeth. This occlusion as a subject is recently one of the most disputed areas of orthodontics as dentistry

 

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- At what age should my child be taken to his first orthodontic check-up?

To eliminate very early problems, the first consultation can even be at the age of 3 and 4. According to the American Association of Orthodontics the greatest orthodontic society of the World- advises to get the first check-up before the age of 7.

 

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- Is it possible, that dental crowding disappears, or even improve with growing?

Several things can be discussed concerning this question:

  • 1. Many parents take their child to the orthodontist, because decidous incisors are crowded or when permanent incisors are coming, these teeth are growing in the 2nd row. In most of these cases it is unnecessary to have any orthodontic intervention.
  • 2. In early childhood, when the crowding is moderate, even a muscular exercise can help, when the over-functioning lips or the tongue muscles can be "re-programmed". This is exercise is practised with the help of a speech therapist and so those muscular forces, which push teeth over can be eliminated, so teeth can go back by themselves. This decision is made by an orthodontist he or she will decide if the case is feasible for such a treatment.
  • 3. After the age of 6-7 in most of the cases the place which is disposed for the front teeth narrows, so basically there is no chance that crowding can be solved by itself.

 

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- In the case of dental crowding is it enough to extract wisdom teeth?

Many people ask, whether it is enough to extract wisdom teeth to help to align of incisors, side teeth. Unfortunately the answer at the first approach is no. Namely, after the extraction of the wisdom teeth, other teeth will not go back by themselves, there is no chance that the problem of crowding will be solved by itself. On the other hand, in some cases with the help of orthodontics it might be possible to move side teeth backwards, to the place where wisdom teeth stood before. In such cases a place can be created and another tooth extraction can be avoided. The orthodontist examines these cases during the treatment planning.

 

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- Is it possible that during an orthodontic treatment the appearance of teeth can even get worse before they get completely straightened?

Yes! The movement of teeth has certain choreography. This choreography depends on the treatment plan as well. There are cases where teeth are moved one by one and there are cases when in groups. During orthodontics it is possible that a gap opens temporarily in a place where it was not before. These gaps can be caused by tooth extraction as well. Naturally these gaps can be temporarily covered by certain tricks. A worsening of the teeth appearance can happen in other ways too. Teeth might tilt temporary during the treatment in a way, which might seem less attractive. We ask patience to trust in the treating doctor, things will get better. Ask your doctor about the state of your treatment phase freely!

 

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- Is it possible to make orthodontics without visible braces?

Yes! Fortunately there are two treatment mechanisms available, which make it possible to move teeth notably but invisibly for an outsider. You can find out more in the "Invisible Orthodontics" section. In addition to this, one of these treatment methods is an invisible and removable cap-like appliance, the Invisalign. See "Invisalign" menu point.

 

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- Is there a terminal age limit for an orthodontic treatment? Is it true, that above a certain age it is not possible to have orthodontic treatment?

This is not true! Orthodontic treatment can be done at all ages. The biologic base for moving teeth is the same at all ages. Transition of teeth in the bone, namely rebuilding of the bone is idiosyncrasy of each living organism. Nowadays it is not a unusual to have an orthodontic treatment at the age of 50 or 60. Obviously there are some naturally characteristic differences of treatment modalities with change of age. In the growing age or during teeth change certain jaw discrepancies can be corrected easier with the modification of jaw-growing or teeth change. Later in adulthood when correcting jaw differences is needed, there need for surgically assisted jaw correction is more likely to arise. Also with the passing of time obstacles might occur more frequently on the level of gum or teeth (like gingivitis or lack of teeth) , so cases can be more comprehensive, but still not impossible.

 

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- Is it possible to treat teeth with braces, which have a crown, bridge or other dental restoration?

The answer is basically yes. In fact we can state that a tooth, which has any single crown, or bridge or inlay, or veneer (indirect filling) can be moved orthodontically. On the other hand before the treatment the following should be judged:

Is there any decay under the crown or gum inflammation which needs to be cured before orthodontics starts? Is the crown or restoration on the tooth suitable for having the braces on?

In case the crown needs to be taken off for some reason, it might be good to place a good long term temporary crown or filling for the duration of the orthodontic treatment. Partly because the restoration might be damaged at the end of the treatment, when the braces are taken off. On the other hand it might be worth to wait until the tooth reaches its final position and so the restoration can be fabricated on the most ideal way. In addition to this we can take consideration that sometimes gaps are left following orthodontic treatment and by the proper plan of the restoration these gasp can be covered. More over many patients have their teeth whitened at the end of the orthodontic treatment. Implicitly, final dental restorations are worth to be made at the end of the tooth whitening.

The existence of the bridge by itself is not an excluding factor as well. Partly because teeth which are not part of the bridge can be moved and the bridge can function as a supportive unit. On the other hand during orthodontics teeth under the bridge can be separated and can be moved individually. In addition to this pontic spaces (spaces of lost teeth) can be narrowed or even completely closed by orthodontic tooth movement of the two crowned bridge-supporting teeth. In such cases it is possible to cover the toothless spaces esthetically.

The situation is different with implants and implant-supported restorations. implants can not be moved; their place in the bone cannot be changed.

 

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