Wickford dentist, Himesh Patel, discusses orthodontic options to straighten teeth.
Although it might not be the foremost thing on our minds right now, given everything that is happening in the world; many of us will have, at some time, taken a look at our teeth in the mirror and wished that they were straighter. A crooked smile, or even just one tooth out of alignment, can really detract from your smile and can in some cases, make us feel quite self conscious about it.
Despite this, it is quite possible that we have also been deterred from doing anything about our crooked and uneven teeth due to the fact that we know that the only way to correct this is to wear braces, possibly for some time. The biggest deterrent factor is usually the visibility of most braces. With traditional braces there is simply no hiding the fact that you are wearing them.
Although the traditional wire and bracket metal braces are highly effective at straightening teeth, their visibility has long been a problem for patients, including some at the Cygnet Dental Practice. The good news for our patients is that more discreet aesthetic braces are now available which allow you to have straighter teeth without that high visibility factor.
Two of the most popular orthodontic systems that we provide at our Wickford dental clinic are Invisalign and the Six Month Smiles. Both of these are effective at straightening teeth but are designed for different types of orthodontic problems.
This system does away with the use of wires and brackets altogether and instead, you will be given a series of transparent trays that are made from impressions that we take of your teeth. Each tray works by applying a gentle pressure to the teeth, encouraging them a little towards their desired position. The trays are designed to be worn for at least 22 hours a day but most patients find them to be perfectly comfortable once they have become accustomed to having them in their mouth. The trays can also be removed when eating food and when cleaning the teeth, allowing for more convenience and better oral hygiene.
Invisalign orthodontics are predominantly designed to correct the alignment of numerous teeth. In most cases this will mean that they need to be worn for a significant length of time, possibly up to 18 months. Their comfort and discretion factor though, make this much less daunting than it might sound. It is natural that patients considering a commitment of this length of time will want to discuss the treatment with us. This can be done at your free non clinical consultation where you can ask any questions about the treatment that you may have concerns about.
Six Month Smiles
This orthodontic system is often termed a ‘cosmetic orthodontic’ treatment. The reason for this is that rather than aiming to correct a significant number of teeth, it is usually used for cosmetic purposes, to correct an issue with one or more of the visible ‘social six’ teeth that we show at the front when we smile. Because these are all single rooted teeth and usually require relatively minor correction, this can usually be achieved in a shorter period of time.
Unlike Invisalign, the Six Month Smiles brace system that is widely used for this purpose does use the traditional wire and brackets approach. There are very significant differences in design however. Whereas traditional dental braces use wires and brackets made from metal, the Six Month Smiles system uses tooth coloured materials including ceramic brackets which are also smaller and more refined. This means that you are able to wear your teeth braces knowing that their visibility is limited when you smile.
You might presume that the name of this system means that your treatment will last for six months. This is not strictly true and is, in fact, an average time taken. Depending on your issue, your treatment could be shorter or longer. If you are planning to have your teeth straightened by a specific date, such as for a wedding or other major event, it is best that you contact your dentist as soon as possible for a consultation where we will be able to give you a more accurate timeframe for the treatment.
Unfortunately, all orthodontic treatment has to be done slowly as too much pressure applied to the teeth could damage both the teeth and the underlying bone structure. Gentle and prolonged pressure is the safest, most comfortable and successful approach to take.
If you are unhappy with your smile, our team of cosmetic dentists at the Cygnet Dental Practice are here to help you. Your free initial consultation is an excellent opportunity to have your smile assessed and to learn and understand how the orthodontic treatments that we have available can help you.
To book your free orthodontic consultation, please call our Wickford dental practice today on 01268 733078.