Consultation & Diagnosis
The treatment procedures are different from one case to the other; some cases need more than just one step of treatment. The following is a general description of the steps done in the clinic. These steps might vary depending on the situation.
During the first visit, the orthodontist listens to the patient’s chief complain as well as to the dental and medical history. He performs a clinical examination to check the general situation of the teeth, gum, occlusion and jaws.
The orthodontist will need some diagnostic tools to help him to have a better understanding of the situation and to make a detailed treatment plan. He will need mainly:
There are many kinds of x-rays that the orthodontist might need depending on the need and on the case. The following X-rays are needed almost in all cases in order to make a diagnosis and a treatment plan:
Which give a general view of the teeth, their stage of an eruption and if there are any impacted teeth.
Which show the position of the teeth and their relation with the jaws, the harmony between the upper and lower jaw and the morphology of the face.
They are a copy of the teeth made out of Gypsum. They show the shape, size and teeth relationship. It is used to record the initial position of the teeth to view the treatment progress.
The orthodontist will need to take a photo for the teeth from different views, as well as photos for the face, smile and profile. These photos will be used to study the case and make a precise treatment plan
Prepare For Your Braces
When the orthodontist is done with your treatment plan, he will discuss it with you. He will explain to you the procedure that you will undergo and the estimated duration for your treatment. He might refer you to your dentist to do some dental treatment if needed or to extract some teeth if the treatment plan requires so.
If you will be treated using a fixed appliance (braces), the orthodontist might place small rubber bands between your molars called separators. these separators will create a small space between the molars to make the insertion of the bands easier.
In the next visit, the orthodontist will fix the molar bands and bond the braces over your teeth and activate the appliance to start moving your teeth
If the orthodontist decides that you will have bands as a part of your appliance, he will start by trying different sizes of them until he finds the sizes that match your molars. Once found he will fix them over the molars using a special kind of glue called dental cement.
When the braces are bonded directly in the mouth by applying a sequence of different dental materials.
This process works by using the moulds of your teeth to make stone models of them. Once the laboratory technician has the models, the orthodontist can put the braces in the most ideal position and take as much time as necessary to put them in the ideal place. Instruments can be used to ensure the accuracy of the brace on every tooth. Once this is done, custom trays are made and trimmed so they are easy and comfortable to place, and they are then cleaned and sterilized prior to your appointment.
Patients are often amazed how quickly and easily braces can be placed with this method. It isn’t widely used in the profession because of the time, expense, and technique sensitivity of the process.
Follow up Visits
Patients are required to visit the clinic every 4-6 weeks. They will be given an appointment for the next visit every time they visit the clinic. During these visits the team will check the appliance for any loose or broken pieces and will activate the appliance. Activating the appliance which means basically programming the braces to make the teeth move in the required direction. The team might change the wire, elastics or add new items to the appliance. It is very important to show up to your appointments. In case you can’t make it; call the clinic to cancel your appointment and to reschedule another one
Treatment Finishing & Retention
When the treatment is finished and the final result is achieved, the braces will be removed and all the teeth will be cleaned and polished from the remaining glue. The team will make a new dental impression for the teeth to fabricate the retainers. They might take post-treatment photos as well in this session.
Lower Teeth Retention
The most common way to retain the lower teeth after the treatment is to fix them together with the small special piece of wire from the inside (lingual faces). It is recommended to keep the lower retainer in place for quite a long time to keep these teeth aligned. These incisors will tend to move during the whole life for reasons related to the growth.
It is very important to keep this retainer clean and brush it every time you brush your teeth. It is recommended to make regular dental check-up. In case the retainer is broken or moving, please call the clinic and explain your problem. The team will schedule you for an appointment to get it fixed.
Upper Teeth Retention
After removing the braces and cleaning the teeth, a dental impression will be sent to the dental laboratory to fabricate the retainers. They should be installed in a few days after removing the braces. It is too important to show to the retainers visits.
There are two main shapes of removable retainers in the upper jaw. One of them is traditional with a metal bar in front of the anterior teeth. The other is transparent.
They both do the same job. Each of them has it is own advantages. It is for the orthodontist to choose which is suitable for your case.