Orthodontics is the speciality of dentistry that deals with malpositioned or maligned teeth. It should be done by a specialist called orthodontist who is trained in the diagnosis and treatment planning of the teeth alignment. The milder cases of tooth malpositioning can be treated with removable orthodontic appliances. In growing years when there are bony discrepancies, the bone growth can be controlled to a desired position by head gears. The most common method of altering the alignment of teeth is by using fixed braces in which
the orthodontist bonds the brackets to the tooth, the wire is placed onto the bracket and fastened with an elastic band. The Patient should undergo regular visit to the orthodontist every 6-8 weeks. The orthodontist alters the force slightly so that the tooth moves the desired position. The alternative
An alternative to this is the self ligating braces. It is also a fixed braces but the wires are held in place by the bracket itself and does not require elastic fasteners. This has the ease and comfort of wearing as there is no friction or wear as in elastics. The desired outcome can be achieved more precisely and at a shorter time than the regular elastic braces and hence there are lesser visits to the orthodontist. Initially metallic brackets were used to retain the wire but more aesthetic options like ceramic and composite brackets are available.
People whose profession demands a non metallic smile can chose either lingual orthodontics or Invisalign. Lingual orthodontics is more like the regular except that the braces are placed on the inner side of the teeth. It is not visible in the smile.