Understand Teeth and Their Conditions and Treatment – 06 What is What is involved with getting braces?

Although dental braces improve the appearance of a person’s teeth, they have practical benefits as well. Braces can help people chew, bite and even speak more effectively. Straight teeth may also contribute to better oral health. When a person decides to get braces, there are several steps involved.

Step 1: Consultation and Exam

During an orthodontics consultation for braces, an orthodontist or a dentist collects information about a patient’s medical and dental history. Next, the dentist performs an oral examination to evaluate the position of the teeth and gum health.

Step 2: X-rays

During this step, the dentist takes panoramic X-rays to get a better view of the entire mouth and the angle of each tooth’s growth. If there are problems with the eruption of any teeth or if there are jawbone health issues, the X-ray will show them. The dentist also takes X-rays of the entire head, which are called cephalometric X-rays. They show a profile view and are useful for calculating important proportions and predicting changes.

Step 3: Impressions and Photos

To ensure a proper fit with dental braces, an orthodontist must make impressions of the teeth. These produce study models that show the inclination of the patient’s teeth and the individual’s bite pattern. Also, the dentist takes pre-treatment photos of the face and teeth for future comparisons.

Step 4: Glue Application

After the dentist discusses problems and the suggested treatment plan with the patient, the next step is brace placement. First, the dentist cleans any debris or buildup from the teeth. The teeth are dried thoroughly, and a small amount of glue is placed on them. After the glue is lightly dried, it is set with a special light tool.

Step 5: Bracket Placement

The pieces that are put on the teeth are called brackets. After the tooth glue is set, the dentist places glue on the backs of the brackets and affixes them to the teeth. The light tool is used again to set the glue. After this, the dentist threads archwire through the brackets. The dentist either adds elastic bands or closes the bracket doors depending on the type of braces.

This is just the start of the orthodontics process. Once the braces are in place, the patient must return every four to 10 weeks for an evaluation and adjustments. The orthodontist compares records to measure progress and determine the length of treatment.

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