Often at St Mark’s Orthodontic and Specialist Dental Care Centre we get asked many questions. Below we hope that we have covered the main ones but should you need any further assistance please do not hesitate to contact us directly.
Orthodontics is a specialised branch of dentistry dealing with the development of the teeth, jaws and face. Any irregularities are investigated, treated and monitored. We can advise you on whether treatment would be beneficial and when treatment should ideally start.
Orthodontic treatment is requested for the following reasons:
Orthodontic treatment can give you a life long benefit of enhanced confidence and improved facial aesthetics. The appearance of your teeth can have a dramatic effect on your smile and self esteem. Treatment at any age can benefit an individual both socially and professionally.
Treatment is available for both adults and children. Children can be seen for an initial assessment from about nine years old or earlier on the recommendation of your dentist. There is no age limit to undergoing a course of orthodontic treatment, although some problems may benefit from early treatment. Dental literature has reported that more than half of all 12 year old children would benefit from orthodontic treatment.
Treatment varies according to the type of problem (malocclusion) you have and usually takes between six months and two years to complete. There are essentially two types of braces; fixed and removable.
Fixed braces will be fitted by your Orthodontist and will not be removed until the treatment is complete. A fixed brace is made of small metal or ceramic brackets, which are glued to the teeth without damaging them. Straightening wires are then fitted to gently move the teeth into the desired position.
Removable and functional braces can be removed for cleaning and contact sports, but are usually worn all of the time, including meals and through the night.
Your Orthodontist will see you every 6 to 8 weeks throughout the active treatment period to adjust the braces and monitor your treatment.
The removal of teeth depends upon the individual needs of the patient. Many people embark upon a course of Orthodontic treatment without the need for dental extractions, but for some it is unavoidable.
The success of Orthodontic treatment is based upon a good relationship between the Orthodontist and the patient. A considerable amount of cooperation is required when wearing braces, elastics or headgear.
Braces must be kept in good condition and immaculately clean. Most problems arise when patients do not follow the instructions of the Orthodontist.
At the end of the treatment your Orthodontist will provide you with retainers.
These will help stabilize your teeth in their new positions. Removable retainers are initially worn full time and then at night. In some cases, your Orthodontist may recommend the use of permanent retainers.
An increasing number of adults are choosing to have Orthodontic treatment. Approximately one third of these are males and two thirds females. Click here for more information.
Whilst it may take a little longer to straighten adult teeth, it is rarely an obstacle to a successful treatment outcome.
At St Mark’s you will be treated by some of the most highly qualified Orthodontists in Middlesex. All three Partners of St Mark’s are Hospital Orthodontic Consultants in South and West London.