Treatment times differ according to the severity of the malocclusion. With no breakages and attending regularly every 6 weeks or so, the average treatment time for fixed braces is 24 months. Early treatment in children involving functional appliances followed by fixed braces may take up to 3 years.
The fitting of the braces does not hurt. Your teeth will feel tender for the first 3-4 days after the appliance has been fitted. You may also develop little mouth ulcers while you adapt to the brace. The use of wax provided by Dr O’Keeffe and mild painkillers will help.
Conventional braces do not affect your speech. Lingual braces when first placed on the upper teeth may affect your speech temporarily. Normally everyone adapts within the first week or so and speech returns to normal.
Good oral hygiene is very important to prevent decalcification (decay) of the teeth. This is a problem that can occur more frequently with labial braces. With a healthy diet, good toothbrushing and regular dental check ups with your own dentist, decalcification and gum problems during treatment can be prevented.
Dr O”Keeffe recommends children to be seen between 8 and 10 years of age or before they shed their last baby molar teeth.
You are never too old for treatment. So long as your teeth, gums and bone levels are healthy you have orthodontic options. If you feel self conscious about having a brace, then lingual incognito braces are for you. You will be the only person who knows you are wearing them.
Following orthodontic treatment it is necessary to wear retainers immediately to prevent unwanted movement as everything in our bodies changes with time. Retainers may be fixed and worn indefinitely requiring meticulous oral hygiene. Retainers may also be removable and worn full time for the first 6 months, then night time only for an extended period of time until your orthodontist suggests you reduce the wear.
Conventional braces are metal, but it is possible to have ceramic braces that are tooth coloured. These are still on the outside of the teeth but are more aesthetic than metal braces.
This is the straightening of teeth using fixed braces which are placed on the inside or the inner surface of the teeth. This means that they are completely invisible The bracket system that Dr O’Keeffe uses is called the incognito system which uses custom made Gold Braces designed individually for every patient. This is the ultimate system in modern day orthodontics and is more suitable to older children where most if not all of the teeth are erupted and ideal for adult patients where discretion is key.
Yes it is important to see your own dentist for regular check ups before, during and after orthodontic treatment.
Yes, fixed braces act as a protective splint in the case of direct trauma to your teeth. Thermoplastic gum shields purchased in local sport shops provide protection and comfort.
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