Posted on 6 January 2020
Until now, not much has changed in orthodontics over the past few decades. Thanks to technology and the advent of both 3D scanning and printing, things are changing fast. These two technologies are breaking down cost barriers and creating opportunities for dentists and orthodontists to provide clear aligners with Active Aligners to their patients.
The stigma that once applied to braces and other orthodontic appliances are being erased by high-end aesthetic appliances and treatment modalities that make it easier and more affordable for late teens and adults wanting orthodontic treatment.
The aim of orthodontics is primarily to correct poorly positioned teeth to optimize the bite and improve both function and appearance.
Orthodontics was often associated with children. Indeed, very early on in a child’s life, interceptive orthodontics can serve to create necessary space and facilitate the eruption of permanent teeth. However, more and more adults and late teens undergo orthodontic treatment to realign their teeth permanently. The basics of tooth movement is the same in children as it is in adults, orthodontic treatment can be done at any age.
Reasons for some people undergoing orthodontic treatment: To realign teeth, To correct an overbite or teeth that are too high, To correct gaps between teeth (diastema) or dental overlap, To prevent premature erosion
Patients deciding on having their teeth straightened is always a good idea, and not only to improve the appearance of their smile. Straightening also improves the functioning of the teeth and the jaw muscles in general. A dental disorder exposes patients to a number of complications: Increased number of cavities due to the complexity of cleaning overlapping teeth, Fractures in poorly positioned teeth, Chronic inflammation of the gums, Temporomandibular joint problems.
There are two kinds of orthodontic treatments: traditional braces and clear aligners.
Braces are definitely the best-known orthodontic technique. It is important to know that braces have changed a great deal in recent years and are now more discreet.
Small metal or porcelain brackets are bonded to the front of the teeth and interconnected by an arch wire, the tightness of which may vary, to gradually shift the teeth according to a predetermined plan. This setup applies very slight but steady pressure on the teeth to move them into their optimal position. Sometimes the wire will need to be replaced with a thicker wire to continue shifting the teeth until the desired results are obtained.
Braces correct the position of the teeth both individually and simultaneously.
Once the braces have been fitted, they have to be adjusted in order to maintain the correct degree of tension. Regular follow-up appointments (every six to eight weeks on average) are required to allow the professional to monitor the treatment.
Wearing braces requires excellent oral hygiene.
Clear aligners are a solution for patients seeking a more discreet orthodontic treatment than conventional braces, as they do not use brackets or wires.
Clear aligners are a modern and near-invisible method for correcting mild to moderate orthodontic problems. They align teeth just as braces do, but using transparent, removable clear aligners.
Active Aligners work on basic orthodontic principles. They are used for the correction of crooked teeth, gaps or rotation, while achieving the desired results in an organized and planned fashion. These customized trays are "invisible" and move the tooth in the desired direction. This is achieved through wearing a series of Active Aligners, each for 22 hours a day, 1 to 2 weeks at a time (one stage), which move the teeth per stage until their optimal alignment has been reached.
Unlike conventional braces, with adjustment appointments every six to eight weeks. Active Aligners are changed every one to two weeks on average, based on your dentist’s recommendations. Each aligner adjusts teeth according to the plan decided on by a dental professional, by applying the required level of pressure.
In general, orthodontic treatment using clear aligners is faster than with traditional braces. Patient compliance is essential to the success of the treatment; patients must be disciplined about wearing their aligners at all times to avoid prolonging the treatment or compromising the outcome.
Treatment with clear aligners involves creating a virtual model of the teeth with CAD/CAM technology to show you all of the steps involved, from the initial position of the teeth up to the final desired result.
Lastly, oral hygiene is easy since you simply remove the aligner to brush your teeth and floss.
Clear braces in the making. What looks to be simple devices, has interesting building blocks and processes in producing quality smile outcomes
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