Orthodontics at any age, Smile Africa - Dental Clinic in Nairobi Kenya

Orthodontics deals with treating dental anomalies such as crowded and crooked teeth. These anomalies affect the normal functioning of teeth. They also have a bearing on the way you look or smile. When teeth are straight, it becomes easy for you to clean them. Injuries and decays are also minimized. This type of treatment has no age restrictions. 

Orthodontic treatment

This treatment is aimed at straightening teeth to enable them look neat and facilitate their proper functioning. Specialists used braces to exert pressure and align your teeth. As months and years go by, your teeth gradually attain the correct position. 

The need for orthodontics

The way your teeth are positioned with respect to the jaws affects the way you bite food particles. A bite is defined as the coming together of the teeth at the top and bottom. The upper and lower teeth may fail to fit leading to what is referred to as malocclusion or bad bite. Bad bite is also brought about by protruding, crowded, crooked or missing teeth. Children who suck their thumbs and fingers are bound to develop a bad bite.  

Bad bites make chewing of some food types difficult. Other problems include wearing down of teeth, muscle pain and tension. Cleaning such teeth is a challenge making you susceptible to gum disease and cavities. Open bite, over jets, cross bites and overbites are the types of bad bites people suffer from. As you can see, orthodontics plays an important in ensuring that you maintain a good smile and keep healthy.

No age limit for orthodontic treatment 

There is no age at which teeth cannot move. This treatment is not for preschoolers and teens only. You can have your teeth reset to their correct position even in old age. After your dentist has completed an evaluation, he can recommend the right treatment according to the circumstances. Interceptive orthodontics refers to cases where treatment begins before you get permanent teeth. In cases of children, this problem is easier to solve than in adults. 

How long does treatment take?

The process of moving teeth takes time. However, this depends on age, extent of the problem and the technique used to rectify a bad bite. You could end up visiting an orthodontist for months or even years. Adults take longer than the young ones.  

How treatment is done

Treatment can be in the form of oral surgery, retainers, removable appliances, headgear or braces. The latter are common in this kind of treatment. 

  • Braces: Braces are the wire like bands you see people’s teeth. The wire is fastened to each tooth with the help of glue. You will experience discomfort after the fitting of braces. After a short while, you get used to the feeling. Some wax is applied to relieve friction between the cheeks, lips and the brace wire.   When you have braces avoid chewing or biting hard things like nuts, ice cubes, pencil or biro ends. Avoid chewing gum as it loosens braces. In case you notice problems with your braces, you should refer them to the dentist. He/she will ensure any problems are fixed immediately.
  • Headgears: This is an appliance fitted around the neck or head. It directs growth of the jaws and movement of teeth. Headgears are ideal for young patients whose teethe are still growing.
  • Appliances: These are worn solo, together with braces or before. They are removable.
  • Retainer: Retainers are used after removal of braces. They can be attached permanently or removed after some time. You can wear them all through or on specific periods of time.