Orthodontics is the branch of dentistry that is officially known as Orthodontics and Dentofacial Orthopedics. The purpose of orthodontics is to treat any type of malocclusion. When you have a malocclusion, that means your teeth, lips and/or jaws don’t line up the way they should. As a result, your teeth may be crooked, your bite may not work correctly and your jaws may look unbalanced. Dr. Amanda Kramer treats patients of all ages from children and teens to adults.
Face the world with confidence. Let us give you the smile of a lifetime! Call today for your complimentary orthodontic evaluation!
Our Orthodontic Dentistry Services
Invisalign treatment involves a series of clear, plastic trays called “aligners” that are custom fabricated to precisely fit the patient’s teeth. They are worn full-time and are only removed when eating, drinking, brushing and flossing. Aligners move the teeth gradually as each new aligner is inserted every 2-3 weeks, depending on the patient’s treatment plan.
Invisalign aligners are virtually “invisible”, very comfortable and allow the patient to eat without the restrictions that traditional metal braces can impose. Though every patient may not be a candidate for treatment with Invisalign, it is an option for many adults who wouldn’t otherwise opt for orthodontic treatment with metal or ceramic braces. Invisalign allows people to straighten their teeth without anyone even knowing they’re having orthodontic treatment!
The American Association of Orthodontists recommends treatment for adults, when appropriate, in conjunction with regular dental care.
Some of the reasons correction of orthodontic problems are important to adults:
- Can help prevent or improve periodontal problems
- Can help prevent or reduce further bone loss around teeth
- Improves ability of the dentist to restore missing teeth
- Improves aesthetics for a better smile and facial appearance
- Improves function of teeth
- Improves self-confidence and self-esteem
- Improves oral health
Many teenagers can now be treated with Invisalign’s “Invisalign Teen” program. Compliance in wearing the aligners must be followed, however, in order to attain the best results and complete treatment within the estimated time. Invisalign teen is a wonderful option for teens who are opposed to treatment with traditional metal braces, but desire a beautiful smile. For more information on Invisalign or Invisalign Teen, visit www.invisalign.com today!
Oral habits, such as finger/thumb sucking and pacifier use, can be responsible for a number of dental problems. These types of habits can cause:
- Open Bites: where there is a space between the front top teeth and front lower teeth, the teeth do not touch.
- Crossbites: the upper arch becomes more narrow than the bottom arch and the teeth shift out of proper position.
- Excessive Overjets: forward movement of the top front teeth, so the front teeth appear to flare out putting them at high risk for trauma during events such as sports.
Airway compromise (mouth-breathing) and tongue thrusting can also cause a number of dental problems. The way or manner in which a young person breathes has a tremendous influence on how the face develops. If upper airway compromise is suspected, an appropriate medical referral and orthodontic/orthopedic intervention is indicated. Some causes of airway compromise are: a deviated septum, inferior turbinate hypertrophy, and/or adenotonsillar hypertrophy.
Individual Tooth Movement
When growth and development are normal, there may be instances in which minor orthodontic treatment is indicated. An example might be a poorly positioned upper incisor. A simple orthodontic appliance might be all that is indicated for correction.
Premature loss of primary teeth can lead to space loss and crowding in either arch. Although it may not eliminate the need for comprehensive treatment at a later date, the regaining of space for permanent teeth at any early age can prevent the loss of permanent teeth. This can be accomplished through the use of appliances and/or fixed braces.
Tooth size discrepancy (small teeth), missing teeth, and tongue thrusting are some of the possible causes for spacing in the dentition. Fixed and removable appliances with or without braces can be employed to close the spaces. In many cases, bonded restorations to small teeth are also necessary. Dental prosthesis and/or implants are usually needed when permanent teeth are missing.
Crossbites can exist with the front teeth or with the back teeth, or with both front and back teeth at the same time. A crossbite can involve a single tooth or multiple teeth. Simple crossbites can be treated with partial fixed braces or with a removable appliance that will tip the offending tooth into the correct relationship. More complex crossbites involve fixed appliances like a palatal expander. Regardless, crossbites should be treated at a young age (as soon as there is patient cooperation). Prolonged crossbite can lead to facial imbalance, jaw and arch asymmetry, and Temporomandibular Joint (TMJ) problems if allowed to continue until after growth has taken place.
Development of the dental arch can involve appliances to gain arch width, arch length or both. These appliances can be either fixed or removable. Arch development at an early age can be employed to relieve crowding and develop narrow arches. In most cases arch development is indicated prior to skeletal correction. A good example of this would be the child whose upper teeth stick out. Intra arch development would be indicated prior to inter arch correction.
Full fixed braces usually involve the use of brackets and wires on all the teeth in both arches. Braces may be used in conjunction with appliances, and are indicated when bodily tooth movements are indicated. Tooth corrections might involve eliminating rotations as well as leveling and alignment. Brackets can be either stainless steel or ceramic. Treatment may be divided into two phases with a period of interim retention in between. The first phase begins in the mixed dentition (baby teeth and adult teeth are present), and the second phase is started when the twelve year molars erupt.
Orthodontic treatment is not just for children and teens. Many adult patients choose orthodontics as a way to improve their dental health, function, and to have the beautiful smile they’ve always wanted. Our doctors look forward to answering any questions you have regarding orthodontics, and they invite you to call today to schedule a complimentary orthodontic evaluation!
After desired tooth movement has been accomplished, some form of retention appliance is necessary in order to stabilize the resulting bite and prevent tooth movement. Retention appliances can be fixed or removable.
It is crucial that retainers are worn faithfully as prescribed by the doctor, or the patient can experience relapse. Many adults today seek orthodontic re-treatment due to serious relapse because they failed to wear their retainers after completing orthodontic treatment as a child or teen.
Mouthguards can reduce injuries to the mouth and jaws and are indicated during sporting activities, especially those that involve contact. Mouthguards have also been shown to reduce forces that can cause concussions. Usually, a custom made mouthguard is the most comfortable and the easiest to wear. They should usually be replaced annually, especially in the growing child. For our young patients who are undergoing orthodontic treatment, an orthodontic mouthguard must be worn as opposed to a custom-made mouthguard. We provide orthodontic mouthguards as part of our patient’s orthodontic contracts. Please let us know if you require a new orthodontic mouthguard at any time during your orthodontic treatment.
Splints are removable appliances that can be made for either the upper or lower arch. There are numerous designs. Splints are used to alleviate pain from temporomandibular (jaw) joint disorders, as well as to treat bruxism (teeth grinding) and reduce damage to tooth structures from grinding.
Interim Partial Dentures
Interim partial dentures, which are removable, are indicated post orthodontics where permanent teeth are missing and an implant is not indicated because of the patients age. The interim partial denture will also serve as a post orthodontic retainer.