When should I think about correcting a child's bite? By what signs to understand that the orthodontist is worthy of trust? And is it true that modern braces are completely invisible? We asked all these questions to the orthodontist.
Our expert: Yanina Hakobyan. Orthodontist, specialist in lingual orthodontics, co-owner of Canadian Dentistry Clinic
1. At what age do parents need to worry about whether their child's teeth are straight enough? Should I start straightening my teeth when not all of the molars have grown yet?
I recommend having the first consultation with an orthodontist already at the age of three, when a temporary (milk) bite is formed. At this stage, it is possible to identify the prerequisites for further bite pathologies. Bite correction at an early age can prevent more complex and multifaceted malocclusion. Subsequent preventive visits to the orthodontist can be made every 2 years.
2. How long does an average child need to wear braces? And is one system installed immediately for the entire period, or do you need to change something in the process?
If we are talking about the duration of treatment of adolescents on braces, then the duration of treatment on average varies from six months to two and a half years. As a rule, treatment is carried out on one bracket system, but sometimes additional mechanisms are possible in the form of certain orthodontic appliances. For example, it can be a system of braces in combination with a palate expander or special springs that stimulate the growth of the lower jaw.
3. Many children (and parents) are sure that the correction of teeth is long, uncomfortable, ugly and even painful. What new developments are there that can make the process easier?
Definitely, the more professional your orthodontist is, the more convenient and shorter the treatment will be, as for the aesthetic side of things, here lingual (internal) braces come to the rescue, they are fixed on the inside of the teeth, with them the likelihood of caries is much lower enamel and easier oral hygiene. In terms of treatment pain, today orthodontics is considered a science and technique where ultra-light forces are applied, and we adhere to the concept of moving teeth with small forces, this does not negatively affect the speed of treatment, but greatly reduces any likelihood of pain. The maximum discomfort of my patients is associated with soreness when chewing solid food in the first 2-3 weeks after the start of treatment. But such sensations are easily tolerated and do not affect psychological comfort.
4. Is it true that there are systems now that are almost invisible?
Indeed, today orthodontics has such a powerful weapon as lingual (internal) braces. Firstly, this is the only system that is really not noticeable, because even transparent Invisalign mouthguards are visible on the teeth, and sometimes they look very unpleasant. Lingual systems are proven to be predictable in terms of delivering excellent treatment outcomes, are 70% less likely to cause cavities or stains on the enamel than visible braces, are more comfortable in terms of oral hygiene, are individually made and are produced in Germany according to the specific desired treatment outcome. Recent studies published in scientific journals present lingual braces as the most advanced bite correction mechanism to date, which minimizes the likelihood of recurrence of malocclusion.
5. What are the criteria for choosing an orthodontist, what should you pay attention to when choosing?
When choosing an orthodontist, I recommend paying attention to how carefully the doctor diagnoses and plans treatment. It is also important to understand whether you are suitable for each other on a personal level, because you will have to meet with him often and sometimes for a long time. I would also appreciate the doctor's awareness of the latest scientific publications, whether the doctor photographs you at the stages of treatment, and if not, then find out how your treatment processes will be analyzed. Also important is how experienced and confident the doctor is.