Orthodontics at Antwerp House Dentistry, Cambridge
Whether you are a child or an adult, orthodontics is a fabulous way to straighten your teeth and promote your best smile, and aesthetics. Whether you are seeking traditional braces within the NHS, or more cosmetic brace options, including the nearly invisible Invisalign system, our Cambridge dentists offer most systems available today.
We also offer a complimentary Treatment Coordinator service which is free of charge. You will be shown the various brace options and associated costs to help you with decision-making prior to making an appointment to meet the relevant Orthodontic Practitioner.
Give us a call on Cambridge 247690 to speak to one of the team and book a free consultation with a Treatment Co-ordinator.
What is Orthodontics?
Orthodontics is any medical dental treatment that is intended to improve the appearance, shape, or alignment of your jaw or teeth. Most orthodontists provide care through the employment of permanent and removable braces. Although it can involve dental surgery such as the removal of obtrusive teeth, in select cases.
Why Do You Need It?
The benefits you could gain from orthodontics mostly depend on the sort of issues you might be having with your teeth. The most common reason cited for seeking orthodontic treatment is to prevent dental crowding, as teeth alignment and straightening can improve the look of the mouth as well as improving dental hygiene.
Other benefits may include gaining a better bite, improving the look of your smile, or correcting abnormal facial developments that may pose long-term health risks.
Who Carries Out Orthodontics?
Orthodontics in the United Kingdom is performed by a mixture of NHS registered orthodontists (particularly for those patients under the age of 18) and similarly qualified private healthcare practitioners.
It is important to note that specialised orthodontic practices should not be confused with regular dental practices. Within Antwerp Dental Group you have access to denitsts that are qualified in both fields and also specialists in orthodontic treatment.
The Different Courses Of Orthodontic Therapy
There are many different orthodontic treatments available that our qualified orthodontists can help you with.
The majority of them use a form of bracing.
Below is a brief guide to some of the most common orthodontic options used by our dentists today.
What is a Removable Brace?
A removable brace (sometimes called a retainer) is an orthodontic straightening device which can be inserted into your mouth and then removed again without fuss.
They contain plastic plates which attach to the roof or base of the mouth and clip over teeth.
Removable devices are usually used for comparatively minor alterations and are typically recommended for early-stage and final-stage straightening.
What is a Fixed Brace?
A fixed brace is any brace that is attached firmly via medical glue for a period of time. It is commonly made out of brackets for each tooth and threaded wires.
It provides heavy-duty straightening and angling correction and may be used in conjunction with a removable brace as part of a longer scheme of orthodontic treatment.
What is a Functional Brace?
A functional brace is slightly unusual, as it is usually removable but interlocks to mount to the roof and base of the mouth as a whole.
This sort of whole mouth correctional device is usually worn constantly during a prescribed period to adjust back a significant overbite on the upper jaw.
Once treatment with a functional brace is completed, the patient’s jaw alignment and the ability of their teeth to clamp down together should be significantly improved.
What is Headgear?
Headgear is any assistive worn device which is attached to a fixed or removable brace to better aid alignment and correction.
Assistive headgear is usually worn by those undergoing treatment at night as it is both physically and aesthetically intrusive. The use of headgear prevents eating or drinking while it is in place.
What are ‘Invisible’ Braces?
Invisible Braces (sometimes called clear aligners when used on the whole row) are a form of tray braces that are moulded to fit over an individual set of teeth to correct them.
While slightly more expensive, they are less intrusive than fixed braces as the clear plastic or ceramic construction means that they are easy to remove if need be and difficult to spot.
They are usually used to treat an overbite, crooked or awkwardly spaced teeth in a similar way to fixed appliances.
If you’re looking to get your own set of invisible braces, there are quite a few different brands to pick from.
Two of the most popular choices are Invisalign and ClearCorrect, both of which can manufacture bespoke transparent orthodontic devices from an assessment from your orthodontist.
Talk to us today if you require more information on what’s available.
What are Elastics?
Elastics are simply small latex rubber bands.
These are attached to fixed braces to help straighten your teeth. They can be provided by your orthodontist but they can also be purchased from some pharmacies and dedicated dental suppliers.
Who can Undergo Orthodontic Treatment?
It is generally suitable for anyone with a full set of adult teeth. Most people will develop them fully by the age of 12.
However, it is unsuitable for anyone with poor dental health problems or severe tooth decay as braces can place the mouth under additional strain when it comes to acidic retention.
At Antwerp Dental Group, we are seeing a rise in adult braces and especially invisible braces, so it is never too late to start.
Why Should I Consider Braces?
Orthodontics could have a number of benefits for you. As well as improving your self-esteem and overall appearance, orthodontics can make it easier to keep your teeth clean and healthy. This could have considerable benefits for you in later life.
At What Age(s) Should I Start?
While treatment can be performed at almost any time during adolescence and adulthood, it is recommended that it is undertaken between the key ages of 12 and 18. The teeth can be better moulded into shape while they are still developing.
If you choose to start later in life we may not be able to offer you as many options to alter your smile but be assured that we will find the right plan for you.
What does the Process Involve?
Treatment usually begins with an in-depth assessment by an orthodontist after being referred by your dentist.
This examination may involve making x-rays, modeling, and photographs of your teeth and jaw to give us a clearer picture of the problems that you’re dealing with.
After that, we will put together a plan and timeframe to deal with any problems found.
Once you have your treatment plan, our team will set a date for you to collect your removable device or have your fixed device fitted. You will need to return for periodic check-ups and, possibly, for your us to switch or modify your devices.
You will also need to confirm your source of payment for any work performed if you are over 18 and have not received any case-by-case NHS funding for your orthodontic treatment.
Will I Need to Have Teeth Removed?
In some cases, an individual or multiple tooth extraction is necessary for the treatment to work properly and to optimise the aesthetic improvements made from having braces fitted.
Most people who undergo orthodontic treatment don’t have to have any teeth removed.
How is Treatment Carried Out?
Normally it will involve wearing a fixed, removable, or invisible brace for an agreed period of time.
It may also involve the wearing of dental headgear at night, to better align your teeth.
Once we are fully satisfied that the results are permanent, you can have your braces removed or stop wearing your retainer.
How Long Will it Take?
Most orthodontic treatment is completed within an 18-24 month timeframe.
It may take more time to complete if you have additional, severe, or complex orthodontic problems aside from needing straightening and alignment. It may also take longer if you are using an ‘invisible’ brace.
Short Term Orthodontic Options
We recognise the diverse needs of our adult patients. Some of our happy clients are looking to prepare for a special occasion. We have many brides come to us wanting a perfect smile for their wedding day, and need a speedy outcome, and many adults seek cosmetic alignment without a lengthy overarching treatment plan.
At Antwerp Dental Group, we provide a comprehensive range of brace options which will cater for the needs of most adult patients for quick, but more limited results :
- Six Month Smiles
- Inman Aligner
Taking Care of Your Teeth
Whether you’re using a fixed or removable device, you may have to give your teeth some extra attention when it comes to safety and cleanliness whilst you’re undergoing treatment.
Make sure to keep braces (gently) brushed and flossed to prevent the build-up of plaque and acid.
Ideally, you should try to clean your teeth and brace after every time that you eat. You should try to avoid crunchy or tough foods (such as ice) and make sure to wear a protective mouth shield when playing any rough sport.
Make sure to avoid excessive amounts of sugary food and drinks, as well.
What Happens when my Teeth are in the Right Position?
Once we are satisfied that all of your teeth are in the correct place, you will enter what is known as the retention phase of your treatment. This may involve switching from a fixed device to a retainer in many cases.
The use of a retainer for around 6-9 months should help to keep your teeth in the correct position permanently.
We may request further check-ups and surveys to make sure that this process is happening correctly. If you have any issues, further treatment may be needed.
Can Orthodontics Damage my Teeth?
With proper care and attention given to cleaning while following an orthodontic plan from a qualified professional your orthodontic treatment should be completely harmless to your teeth.
However, tooth decay may occur more rapidly with devices such as a fixed brace if you do not keep on top of your brushing and flossing.
A heavy impact to your braces may also cause permanent damage to the inside of the mouth.
Is Orthodontic Work Permanent?
Yes, in most cases.
If you follow our plan to the letter, your teeth should stay in their fixed formation for the rest of your natural life.
However, you should expect some small adjustments to position and the aesthetics of your smile as you age, which is a perfectly normal consequence of growing older.
In extremely rare cases, they may start to backslide to their original position or into another abnormal formation.
Contact us immediately if you suspect that this is happening.
How do I Care for my Braces?
With fixed braces, you should try to clean them as carefully as you would your exposed teeth.
With removable appliances, try cleaning them with some warm water and a toothbrush once they have been removed from the mouth.
Do not use toothpaste on your removable brace and take care when using an electric toothbrush.
Will Orthodontic Treatment Hurt?
You should not experience any serious, long-term tooth pain while wearing your braces.
A degree of discomfort and tenderness should be expected during the first phase of your treatment after your braces are attached. The amount of pain experienced varies enormously from person to person.
If you find wearing your braces uncomfortable to start with, give us a call for more advice or speak to your local pharmacist.
How Many Visits Will I Make to see my Orthodontist?
Once your brace treatment starts your orthodontist will need to see you every 4 to 8 weeks for checkups until your plan is complete.
Over two years this could mean making up to 6 appointments, including ones for the application and removal of your braces.
How Successful will it be?
It depends, but we are good and we are responsible for a lot of happy smiles.
Success rates vary depending on the problem being tackled. Book a consultation and we create a treatment plan that is realistic and you will be happy with.
Orthodontic Treatment – Summing Up
Orthodontics can be completed efficiently and relatively painlessly on a short timescale.
Advances in dental technology have meant that braces can now be made practically invisible, although traditional metal fixed braces are still commonly used.
Our treatment plans now allow you to fully treat any issue, whether it’s impacted, extruding, misaligned teeth, a prominent overbite, bite firmness, or any other issue.
Orthodontics – The Key Facts
- Available via NHS and private providers in the United Kingdom
- 18-24 month timescale for most procedures
- Payment is required for certain orthodontic treatments as an adult, even with local NHS dental coverage
- Usually, treatment requires a referral and an initial assessment by an orthodontist
- Three main options: fixed, removable, invisible
- Invisible braces can treat serious problems but may take longer to do so
- Most braces are available as part of single and mixed technique treatments
- Mostly painless, some initial issues in select cases
- Harmless to your teeth if your braces are kept clean and well maintained
- Treatment will permanently alter the shape and structure of your teeth and jaw
- Can be used to treat misaligned, overhanging, recessed, or awkward teeth
- Removable braces can be used to treat smaller issues
- All braces should be carefully protected through cleaning and by avoiding excess sugar
- Return to your orthodontist every 4-8 weeks to check on your progress
- In certain, rare cases, surgical removal of individual teeth may be required
- The use of equipment such as elastics and headgear may also be required
- After completion, expect to wear a retainer for 6-9 months
- People between the ages of 12-18 may see better results than adults
- In the event of teeth returning to another position, contact your us as soon as possible
- Ask us on your next visit for further advice on whether orthodontic treatment is the right option for you
How can I go About Getting Orthodontic Treatment?
Call 01223 247690 or fill in the form below to book an appointment today.