What is the treatment?
Dentistry has many branches, one of them is orthodontics. It corrects improperly positioned teeth and jaws and treats an abnormal bite. Teeth that are not fitted together and crooked teeth cause several problems. It is harder to keep clean and always has the risk of tooth decay and periodontal disease. Improperly positioned and crooked teeth cause extra stress on the chewing muscles leading to other issues like a headache, neck and shoulder pain. The appearance of a person gets hampered because of a crooked tooth or for teeth that are not in the right place. Orthodontics helps in having a healthier mouth, a better and pleasing appearance and teeth that would last a lifetime. Orthodontic treatment is based on certain diagnostic tools like special X-rays and pictures of your teeth. Orthodontics includes the treatment of various aspects of facial growth (dentofacial orthopedics) along with the development and shape of the jaw, as well. Previously, orthodontics was known as orthodontia. The term ‘orthodontia’ comes from the Greek word ‘orthos’ that means ‘straight, proper or perfect’ and the word ‘dontos’ means ‘teeth’. Orthodontics treatment helps in straightening crooked teeth, closes wide gaps between two teeth, improves oral functions and prevents excessive wearing out of the teeth.
How is the treatment done?
Many varieties of appliances are used for orthodontic treatment. They can be either fixed or removable. The devices help in removing and positioning of the teeth, favorable they affect the jaw and restrain facial and chewing muscles. A gentle pressure on the teeth and jaw would help set the appliances.
Who is eligible for the treatment? (When is the treatment done?)
Persons with the following conditions can opt for the treatment.
Who is not eligible for the treatment?
People who do not have improperly positioned teeth or even if they do, it does not, however, affect their appearance. If a crooked tooth does not affect the oral functions, one need not undergo this treatment. Moreover, this treatment is not necessary when a person has grown and developed a better jaw naturally.
Are there any side effects?
Orthodontic treatment is used mainly to position the crooked tooth. However, this treatment has a few adverse effects. They can be inside or outside the mouth or systematic side-effects.
Intra-oral or inside the mouth: Tooth decay is the most common if the patient is not careful about the oral hygiene or if the treatment goes on for a length of time. Decalcification can occur on the tooth after the treatment leading to small white lesions. People wearing braces are more prone to decalcification.
Extra-oral or outside the mouth: It is uncommon but it includes infection from the metal nickel from the brace, or the patient might be allergic to latex, the material used in the gloves of the operator. Temporomandibular dysfunction may also occur.
Systematic side effects: There is a rare chance of having a cross infection if the instruments used in the treatment are not sterilized properly.
What are the post-treatment guidelines?
After the orthodontic treatment is over, all crown surfaces are positioned, and dental bleaching is to be done next. It is because all teeth do not have the same color, particularly when the braces come off. Especially the enamel does not have the same volume or mineralization for all its elements. There might be resin fragments adhered to the coating. After the treatment, some oral adjustments need to be done.
How long does it take to recover?
The length of time required for the recovery depends on the continuity of the treatment. A regular follow-up would take a few months to recover, while a delay can lead to years of treatment with no proper outcome.
What is the price of the treatment in India?
The main cost of this treatment is that of the appliances used. The cost ranges from Rs. 5000 to almost Rs.50000 if you prefer invisible braces. In some dental clinics, the rates may be higher, ranging from Rs.90000 to approximately Rs.2 lakhs. Add on to it, the fees of the orthodontics which again varies from one to another.
Are the results of the treatment permanent?
The procedure is efficient, and the end results are always good and lasting. If an orthodontist diagnoses the problem correctly, the results are stable. Orthodontics is a way to ensure long-term stability of the teeth.
What are the alternatives to the treatment?
Transalveolar transplantation of maxillary canines is an alternative to orthodontics. Fixed orthodontic appliances were used for fixation after which transplanted teeth were firmly affixed in the new position.