Braces and orthodontics
About one-third of kids require orthodontic care.
Learn the answers to some frequently asked questions about orthodontics and braces.
Why use braces?
Your teeth will function at their optimum after receiving orthodontic treatment. This treatment involves having your teeth straightened so you can care for your teeth, gums, and smile.
Almost all orthodontic treatments involve braces to narrow spaces between teeth, straighten crooked, crowded, or projecting teeth, and adjust the bite so that the top and bottom teeth line up when the mouth is closed.
Typically, treatment lasts between 12 months and 2.5 years.
What is the optimal age for braces?
It can be earlier or later, but the best age for braces is typically between 12 and 13 when a child’s mouth and jaw are still developing.
An adult has fewer chances for improvement and is more likely to need more time for treatment.
How do I get braces fitted?
The dentist must recommend an orthodontist for those children who need braces, even if most kids don’t.
According to the law, only licensed professionals may identify themselves as expert orthodontists. To perform the orthodontic treatment, other dentists may have completed additional training.
Under the direction of the orthodontist, some orthodontists collaborate with orthodontic therapists who can make adjustments to braces.
How well do braces work?
Orthodontic treatment typically has excellent results, but you must maintain your commitment to be effective.
After treatment is complete, you will need to wear a retainer for a while to prevent your teeth from shifting back to their pre-treatment positions. Retainers come in a wide variety of designs and can be either detachable or cemented to the teeth.
You’ll need to take additional care when brushing your teeth because braces can trap food and increase the plaque on your teeth. Keep an eye on what you eat, such as avoiding sugary meals and beverages.
It would help if you kept visiting your regular dentist even after receiving orthodontic treatment.
Reviewed by – Dr. Priyanka, MBBS MD Microbiology
Page last reviewed: 30 September 2022