What is an Orthodontist ?

An orthodontist is a dentist who specializes in braces and dental treatments to straighten teeth and correct other teeth irregularities. While most general dentists offer a full range of dental services, orthodontists are specialists that focus only on the diagnosis, prevention and treatment of dental irregularities and facial deformities (i.e. orthodontics). In the United States, orthodontists are required to undergo additional full-time clinical and didactic training after general dental studies, so seeking treatment from an orthodontist means assurance that you are receiving care from someone that has received specialist training.
Although your child may still have mixed dentition (i.e. both baby teeth and adult teeth), it may be an optimal time to start braces. Some baby teeth are wider than their succeeding permanent teeth, and getting orthodontic treatment before the shedding of baby teeth can make treatment easier by preserving the extra spaces that baby teeth occupy and may avoid the need to remove teeth in the future to create spaces for teeth alignment.

In addition, when a child is under active growth, it may be possible to use orthodontic appliances such as jaw expanders to modify his/her jaw growth and movement. Since each child’s situation is different, it is best to take him/her to an orthodontist for consultation on the appropriate treatment.

Why do people get braces ?

You may consider orthodontics treatment (braces or other auxiliaries) if you have one or more of the followings:
• Teeth with gaps between them
• Teeth that are crowded and overlapped
• Teeth that are uneven and irregularly shaped
• Teeth that have excess overjet and/or overbite
• Teeth arches that are narrow
• Underbite/Crossbite/Open Bite
Skeletal (upper & lower jaws)
• Protruding upper or lower jaw
• Receding upper or lower jaw
Facial profile
• Lips that are not touching and chapped
• Short upper lip
• Mouth Breathing
• Thumb Sucking
• Tongue Thrusting