A lot of people aren’t satisfied with the way their smile looks, or the way their teeth look, or various other things about their face.  The sad truth is that, in the United States, a lot of people spend a lot of time and money trying to look more like someone else in a lot of ways, which is why so many ‘-plasty’ surgeries originated here.  However, some of these surgeries do serve a real medical (or dental) need.

For example, misaligned teeth.  Misaligned teeth are somewhat like misaligned tires.  If left misaligned too long, you’ll find that they’re wearing improperly, which could lead to cavities. Cavities, if left untreated, lead to dental abscesses, an infection of the tooth which also has the lovely side effect of rotting away large portions of the tooth affected, leaving you looking like you’re missing the tooth (or most of it, anyway).  Also, incidentally, dental abscesses can kill you, so that’s obviously something that you’re going to want to avoid the best that you can.

So, how do you discover you have misaligned teeth?  If the teeth are so badly misaligned that they’re going to be causing cavities in hard to reach places, it’s probably something that you can notice just looking in the mirror.  For some misalignments, you’ll need to go to your local practitioner of  board-certified orthodontistry in order to have it diagnosed.  A diagnosis will require the usual ogling of the mouth and the teeth within, but can also require things like dental x-rays, bite impressions and modeling, and even can use computer modeling to get a good idea of what’s going on with your teeth and why they’re misaligned.  In some cases, you’re going to have to have a referral in order to have a tooth surgically removed to alleviate crowning, but this is extremely rare, and for the most part, your treatment will be much simpler and much less terrifying than having to have your tooth surgically removed.

For the most part, the treatment plan that you’ll be looking into will be the standard; braces.  A lot of people are embarrassed by the idea of having braces in their mouth, but it’s a lot better than the alternatives.  There’s also the fact that braces are an easy thing to have installed in your mouth, and are much more comfortable and much less of a hassle than the headgear that was the only treatment option before the braces came into use.

Braces are elegant in their simplicity.  It’s a series of brackets mounted on the teeth with the use of a dental adhesive designed entirely for long-term use.  Over the tops of these brackets, or, in more modern versions, through a hole in the center of the bracket, is run a long metal wire, which is then wrapped around the brackets or hooked onto them in order to provide the necessary tension so that the brackets will slowly realign the teeth in a more appropriate pattern of alignment.  This wire will be held in place on the bracket with the use of rubber bands, which can be easily replaced when they snap.

braces for kidsThis is what standard metal braces are.  They’ve been in use for around fifty years, and they were extremely popular when they came out, quickly taking an immense amount of the market share that existed for orthodontic appliances that realign your teeth.  They were a great step up in technology, and that explains why they quickly gained so large a portion of the market.  But now, they’re losing a bit of market a bit at a time, to a newer, and better, option.

Invisalign braces for adults and teens are the next step up in teeth realignment technology.  They’re invisible, as the name would imply, but they’re also a great choice from your local board-certified orthodontist if you want your teeth alignment issues fixed, but don’t want it to be obvious to the entire world that you’re getting something done to your teeth.  A lot of people are very self-conscious about drawing attention to the problems they perceive that they have, even when they’re fixing them.

So, if you’re looking into getting a bit of work done on your teeth, you should contact your local professional orthodontist in order to see what they can offer, as well as to see what treatments are right for your particular problems.  They’re well-equipped to help you, as this is their area of expertise, and they’re going to be able to tell you what choice is best for you.