What is orthodontics?
Orthodontics is an area of dentistry. Orthodontics is concerned with the
diagnosis, prevention and treatment of poorly positioned teeth and jaws,
and associated irregularities of the face. Orthodontics straightens teeth,
improves function and improves the appearance of the smile.
Who needs orthodontics?
Anyone concerned about the appearance and function of their teeth and jaws.
Treatment can start as young as 7. There is no upper age limit. Most orthodontic
treatment is undertaken in the early teen-age years as this is when growth is most rapid.
Orthodontic treatment costs are variable and reflect the severity of the problem,
and the complexity and length of treatment. The treatment fee is provided before
treatment begins, there are no hidden costs. Fees may be paid over an extended
period. An estimated treatment cost can be provided at the initial consultation.
The initial consultation costs $150.
What are fixed appliances?
Braces are available in stainless steel or clear (porcelain). Braces are fixed
to the teeth and act as handles, allowing the teeth to be moved as directed by the wire.
What are removable appliances?
Plates used to correct the positions of individual or few teeth or retaining plates worn at the end of treatment.
What are functional appliances?
These appliances use the functional forces of the face to correct the bite and are only
used in growing patients. They are generally used to posture a small lower jaw forward in the face.
How long does it take?
Treatment times vary depending on the pre-treatment problems. The average treatment
time is 18 months.
How do I know if I will need teeth out?
You will be advised at the initial consultation whether it is likely you will
need teeth out. Confirmation and timing of any extractions will be advised at
the treatment chat, i.e. after records have been taken and a treatment plan
Do you always take teeth out?
How can I pay?
The whole treatment can be paid for in one payment, a discount is given
for this method of payment. The treatment can also be paid off over a period
of time, a deposit is paid when the braces are put on and the balance is
paid off with equal monthly payments. A Direct Debit to your bank account
is set up for these monthly payments.
How do I look after my braces?
Your teeth have to be kept very clean. You will not be able to eat hard foods
during treatment. Initially only soft foods will be able to be eaten. It is also
important to avoid sticky foods and sugary drinks as these will promote dental
decay. An information sheet is given at the time your braces are put on. You will
also need to see your dentist for regular dental check ups during treatment and
you may need extra dental hygiene visits.
Will it hurt?
Several hours after the braces have been placed you are likely to feel some discomfort.
This will ease after the first week but some discomfort may also be felt after each
How often will I see the Orthodontist?
Catherine sees all her patients at a 6 to 8 weekly interval throughout the treatment.
What is retention?
After the braces have been removed it is vital that the teeth are kept in their
new position. This can be achieved with the use of an upper removable plate and a
fixed wire bonded behind the lower front teeth. You will need the plate full time
for 6 months and then nights only for 1 – 1.5 years. Catherine will monitor
you retention for 2 years after the braces have been removed.
Why should I choose a specialist?
Most orthodontic problems are quite complicated and require the expert knowledge
and skills of a specialist dentist called an ORTHODONTIST.