Orthodontics Overview


What a difference straight teeth can make! A great-looking smile can boost your self-confidence and have a positive impact on social and professional opportunities. Orthodontic treatment is the original smile makeover tool — and you will be happy to know that you're never too old to take advantage of it. Properly aligned teeth help you to bite, chew, and even speak more effectively. They are also easier to clean, which helps keep your mouth free of tooth decay and gum disease.

The amazing thing about orthodontics is that it harnesses the body's natural ability to remodel its own tissue. Orthodontic appliances gently reshape bone and move teeth into better positions. This includes metal braces, ceramic braces, lingual braces, and clear aligners (Invisalign).

Bite Problems and How to Fix Them

 Orthodontic Problems.

Orthodontic treatment can resolve a number of bite problems, which often become evident by around age seven. These include underbite, crossbite, overbite, open bite, and crowding.

To correct bite problems, teeth need to be moved — but doing that isn't as hard as you might think! Teeth are held in place by a hammock-like structure called the periodontal ligament, which is very responsive to forces placed on the teeth. Orthodontic appliances move teeth by careful application of constant, light pressure. This force can be applied via metal wires that run through brackets attached to the teeth (braces), or via the plastic of clear aligners known as Invisalign.

Orthodontics is for Children — and Adults

Having orthodontic treatment during childhood is ideal because we can take advantage of a youngster's natural growth processes to help move the teeth into proper alignment. Like the rest of the body, the teeth and jaws are now changing rapidly. So at this time it's possible to create more room for teeth in a crowded mouth by using a "palatal expander" to rapidly widen the upper jaw. This phase of growth modification can shorten overall treatment time and ensure the best result if additional orthodontic appliances are needed.

But remember, healthy teeth can be moved at any age, so you've never “missed the boat” for orthodontic treatment. In fact, about one in five of today's orthodontic patients are adults. Several new technological developments — have made orthodontic appliances less evident and enhanced the treatment experience for grown-ups.

Types of Orthodontic Appliances

 Orthodontic Appliance Options.

Metal braces are no longer the only option. Clear braces use brackets made of ceramic or plastic, which are hardly visible. Lingual braces are just like traditional metal braces — except they're bonded to the back of your teeth.

Invisalign is an alternative to fixed orthodontic appliances. They consist of a series of clear plastic “trays” that fit over your teeth; each one moves your teeth a little bit, until they are in the proper position. Whether fixed or removable, each type of appliance may have advantages or disadvantages in particular situations. After a complete examination, we will discuss which treatment options are best for you.

Retention & Post Orthodontic Care

Once your orthodontic treatment is completed, it's extremely important to wear a retainer as directed. That's because teeth naturally tend to shift back to their original locations. Wearing a retainer holds your teeth in their new position long enough for new bone and ligament to re-form around them and helps keep your gorgeous, new smile looking good for a lifetime.

Schedule Your Appointment Today!

Contact us today to schedule your appointment today with Choonara Orthodontics in Johannesburg, South Africa! Choonara Orthodontics is ready to perfect your beautiful, perfect smile!

Related Articles

Orthodontics - Dear Doctor Magazine

The Magic of Orthodontics Proper alignment of the teeth is basic to “Smile Design.” Their position dictates how they work together and affects the way you look and smile. Only orthodontic treatment can move teeth into the right position. Simply put, when things look right, they probably are right. Learn the basics of smile analysis and design and whether the magic of orthodontics will work for you... Read Article

Adult Orthodontics - Dear Doctor Magazine

Orthodontics for the Older Adult Healthy teeth can be moved at any age, so there's no such thing as “too old” for braces. In fact, nowadays about one out of every five orthodontic patients is an adult. Yet this figure represents only a small portion of adults who could actually benefit from orthodontic treatment... Read Article

Clear Aligners for Teens - Dear Doctor Magazine

Clear Aligners for Teenagers Teens who regard traditional braces as restrictive, confining, and obstructive to their lifestyles now have another choice for orthodontic treatment: clear aligners. This advanced dental technology, originally geared toward adults, has recently evolved to treat a greater variety of bite problems in younger people. These improved orthodontic appliances can help teens function normally during a difficult phase of life... Read Article