Orthodontics is the dental speciality associated with straightening protruded, rotated or malpositioned teeth in children and adults with fixed or removable braces. An Orthodontist is a dentist who specialises in this treatment.
When a tooth is out of position in the dental arch it absorbs more biting force than its neighbours, causing it to loosen prematurely. An orthodontist starts your treatment by taking a detailed look in your mouth. The next step is often to make a study model of your teeth to do a detailed analysis of your bite. After this detailed analysis starts with the treatment.
Orthodontics physically moves teeth with braces into their proper position by pushing them through bone. When the proper amount of pressure is exerted on teeth bone, disappears in the area where the tooth is being pushed into and reappears in the area where the tooth was originally located.
This is normally done using specially made braces. It is usually healthier to treat malpositioned or crooked teeth orthodontically as orthodontics actually corrects the problem. The major drawback to orthodontics is that treatment involves six or more months of annoying braces.
These deformities could also be treated by non-orthodontic means, but non-orthodontic methods focuses on hiding the problem rather than correcting it. However, main advantage with non-orthodontic treatment is that it usually takes only one to two weeks. Malpositioned teeth can be made to appear in proper position with non-orthodontic methods of sculpting, bonding, porcelain laminates (veneers) and/or porcelain crowns.
Sculpting is gentle reshaping the teeth with a drill. This technique can simply and dramatically reshape crooked teeth. The benefits of this technique are its simplicity and cost-effectiveness. However, it cannot be used to treat more severe cosmetic problems.