What is Orthodontics?

Orthodontics literally means straight teeth. Orthodontics examines the relationship of teeth, lower and upper jaws and facial bones with each other, examines the age and developmental status of the individual, tries to prevent the formation of malformed structures, detects different shape problems than they should be, and treats irregularities in the teeth, position and mouth closure problems and problems in the facial skeleton. It is a specialty of dentistry that aims to achieve good function and aesthetic appearance thanks to these treatments.

Why is Orthodontic Treatment Necessary?

crooked teeth; They are structures that are unaesthetic, pose a risk in terms of caries and gingivitis, cause problems in closing the mouth, and can cause diseases in the lower jaw joint in advanced age. Straight teeth and a straight chin protect the health of teeth and gums by providing a natural aesthetic, a beautiful smile, comfortable speaking, as well as more comfortable chewing and nutrition. Since adequate oral hygiene cannot be provided in crooked tooth curves, the risk of gum diseases and caries is eliminated with orthodontic treatment.

The risk of functional problems such as lower jaw joint disorders due to incorrect jaw position is prevented by proper mouth closure thanks to orthodontic treatment.

When Do Orthodontic Disorders Occur?

Orthodontic diseases can start in childhood as well as in adulthood due to early and permanent tooth loss, discomfort and trauma.

What Are the Causes of Orthodontic Disorders?

-Genetic factors: Incompatibility between tooth size and jaw may cause crowding or the formation of spaces between teeth called diastema in medicine.

-Birth anomalies: cleft palate, rabbit lip, congenital missing teeth or extra teeth

-Faulty function: Mouth breathing and swallowing problems during sleep may cause tooth and jaw irregularities to enter the tongue between the teeth.

-Harmful habits: Biting a pen or lip, sucking fingers, using bottles and pacifiers for a long time can cause gaps between the incisors.

– Loss of milk teeth earlier than they should be due to caries (especially milk molars)

– Teeth clenching and grinding habits, traumas due to falling and impact

Treatment Start Age and Duration

In such operations, there is no age limit if there is no disease in the teeth and surrounding tissues. Orthodontic treatment can be done at any age. Short or long-term orthodontic treatment is possible in adolescents and adults. The patient’s age affects only the duration of treatment. However, if the individual has an irregularity in the bone structure, that is, if there is a skeletal disorder, age is an important factor.

Orthodontics in Children

In children, it is recommended that the first orthodontic examination be performed until the age of 7 – 8, when the incisors in the upper and lower jaws begin to rub frequently. In this way, situations that may cause problems in the future during the growth and development period (open closure of the anterior part, anterior or lateral closure, swallowing problem, etc.) can be detected early. If there is a skeletal disorder or if there are faulty habits, orthodontic treatment, which is started at an early age with the measures taken against these conditions at a young age, helps to prevent disorders that may occur in the facial skeleton. In addition, it prevents the problem from becoming more severe and problems that may become larger in the future in this way.

When the orthodontist deems it necessary, treatment can be started between the ages of 8 and 0. In problems related to the jaw, it is necessary to plan the orthodontic treatment before puberty (10-12 years) without skipping the growth and development process of the individual.

Orthodontics in Adults

It is possible to perform some treatments that cannot be performed in childhood, at a later age.

The duration of orthodontic treatment varies according to the age of the individual, the condition of the irregularity in the teeth, whether there is a skeletal problem and the type of appliances used for treatment. While orthodontic treatments in children are short-term between 6 months or 1 year, treatments that require longer terms in adolescents and adults take 1-3 years.

Orthodontic Treatment Types

Preventive Orthodontic Treatment

The purpose of this treatment is to provide sufficient space for the permanent teeth to be straight. It is recommended that children prone to dental caries be followed up by a Pedodontist. Preventive treatment of permanent molars can be started from the age of 6 years. For this, the fissure sealant flour application in primary teeth and permanent teeth is used to fill the place of prematurely lost milk teeth.

In the period when milk and permanent teeth are present at the same time, treatment and preventive treatment are performed together. (6 – 12 years old)

Preventive Orthodontic Treatment

In order to prevent bad habits (finger sucking, wrong swallowing, etc.) that may cause orthodontic problems in the period when milk and permanent teeth are located together in the mouth and to provide sufficient width for the teeth, removable appliances can be used to make more room for the permanent teeth. Slight crowding problems that may occur in the anterior region at the age of 7-8 years, position problems in the incisors, reverse bites that close to the anterior or lateral diagonal can be corrected at these ages and prevent them from becoming more complicated, thanks to removable orthodontic appliances.

Fixed Orthodontic Treatment

After the permanent teeth have erupted, metal or ceramic brackets placed on the teeth by the orthodontist and removed at the end of the treatment and orthodontic wires passing through these brackets are performed. Brackets can be placed on the anterior and posterior parts of the teeth. In fixed orthodontic treatment, transparent plaque or invisible fixed wires (retainer) are used by the orthodontist as a reinforcing treatment to protect healthy teeth, gums and bone tissue.

Appliances and Treatment Techniques Used in Orthodontic Treatment

Removable Appliances

They are tools that are used in a single or several dental groups for the treatment of non-long-term jaw enlargement during adolescence, when milk and permanent teeth are generally present, and which are invisible from the outside, can be put on and taken off by the patient himself, and can be used at school and during sleep, apart from activities such as eating and sports. It can be produced in colored or transparent form depending on the individual’s request. In its structure, there is a wire section that provides tooth movement and screws for expansion.

Transparent Plates

Removable transparent plaques are orthodontic treatments used to correct the crowding problem in the incisors and to provide an aesthetic appearance. In the clinic, the measurements of the person are taken and recorded in 3D via a special software on the computer. The teeth are planned to reach the occlusion, and 0.40 mm thick transparent plaques are given to the patient to produce the required number and apply for 2 weeks. Plates must be worn for 18 hours each day until improvement is achieved. Unlike the fixed technique, this technique can only be used in some cases and the patient must follow the doctor’s instructions well.

Fixed Appliances (Bracket and wires)

Metal brackets are placed on the top of the teeth by the orthodontist and remain throughout the treatment. They are produced using stainless steel material. They are connected to each other by rubbers that provide tooth movement. Tires are colored or transparent and are renewed at every appointment.

Aesthetic brackets are applied with porcelain-structured transparent brackets, which are used in the treatment process and are not different from metal brackets in terms of operation, for individuals who do not like the metal appearance. Thanks to the transparent brackets and the tooth-colored wires attached to the upper part, it is not visible from the front.

Lingual Brackets are an aesthetic orthodontic treatment technique that is attached to the back of the tooth and is not visible from the outside. It has advantages such as being invisible and being produced specifically for the patient. Its disadvantage is that it cannot be applied in some cases, it causes speech difficulties and tongue sores in the first days of treatment, it is more expensive than other techniques, and the treatment process is longer than other techniques.

Frequently Asked Questions About Orthodontic Treatments

At what age should the orthodontic examination be done, what is the starting age for orthodontic treatment, can it be done at any age?

It is recommended that the first orthodontic examination is performed at the age of 7-8 years, when the permanent incisors in the lower and upper jaws are used. Problems such as anterior open closure, anterior and lateral cross closure, and incorrect swallowing, which may adversely affect growth and development at these ages, can be detected in the early period and the orthodontist starts treatment at the age of 8-10 years, if deemed necessary. Orthodontic treatment is started in the pre-adolescence (10-12 years) period in order to benefit from growth and development in problems related to the jaw.

What are the causes of orthodontic crooks?

-Genetic factors: Incompatibility between tooth size and jaw may cause crowding or the formation of spaces between teeth called diastema in medicine.

-Birth anomalies: cleft palate, rabbit lip, congenital missing teeth or extra teeth

-Faulty function: Mouth breathing and swallowing problems during sleep may cause tooth and jaw irregularities to enter the tongue between the teeth.

-Harmful habits: Biting a pen or lip, sucking fingers, using bottles and pacifiers for a long time can cause gaps between the incisors.

– Loss of milk teeth earlier than they should be due to caries (especially milk molars)

– Teeth clenching and grinding habits, traumas due to falling and impact

If orthodontic treatment is not performed, the health of the gums in the area with crowding problem deteriorates, gingivitis occurs with swelling and bleeding, caries and bad breath problems are observed.

How long does orthodontic treatment take, what are the appointment intervals?

The duration of orthodontic treatment varies according to the age of the individual, the condition of the irregularity in the teeth, whether there is a skeletal problem and the type of appliances used for treatment. While orthodontic treatments in children are short-term between 6 months or 1 year, treatments that require longer terms in adolescents and adults take 1-3 years.

Why is orthodontic treatment necessary, is it just for aesthetic reasons?

With properly positioned teeth obtained with orthodontic treatment, an aesthetic appearance, beautiful smile, comfortable speech, as well as comfortable nutrition, high oral hygiene, healthier teeth and gums are achieved. In case of crooked teeth, the risk of gum diseases and dental caries is higher due to insufficient oral hygiene, and complaints may appear in the lower jaw joint due to the wrong position of the lower jaw. Thanks to the smooth and proper mouth closure provided by orthodontic treatment, such problems are eliminated.

Do orthodontic brackets cause pain, pain etc. complaints during and after insertion?

Attaching orthodontic brackets is not a painful procedure. Depending on the force applied after the orthodontic braces are attached, there may be a feeling of tension and mild sensitivity during the first 1-2 days. This situation improves when tooth movement begins.

Are brackets and wires used in orthodontics harmful to the body?

Since the materials used in orthodontic treatment are tissue-friendly materials such as porcelain, stainless steel and titanium, there is no harm to the human body.

Is there a need for food and beverage restrictions during orthodontic treatment?

In the orthodontic treatment process; It is recommended not to consume hard foods such as nuts, snacks, toast, rusks and acidic beverages, to eat foods such as plums, cherries and olives by removing the core, to avoid hard foods, to chew small bites with the back teeth without biting, and to remove the brackets and wires. In this way, prolongation of the treatment process is prevented.

Do orthodontic brackets and wires cause cavities on the teeth, how are the brackets and wires cleaned, will there be stains on the teeth after the brackets are removed?

Brackets and wires do not have a direct effect on caries formation. The food accumulating around the brackets should be cleaned using orthodontic brushes, gingival brushes, interface brushes and mouthwash 3 times a day in order to avoid the risk of caries and gingivitis. When the brackets are removed, there is no stain on the teeth.

Is there a risk of deterioration of the teeth corrected with orthodontic treatment after the braces are removed, what is the importance of the reinforcement treatment?

At the end of the orthodontic treatment, the brackets are removed by the dentist and it is aimed to fix the teeth in place by moving on to the reinforcement treatment. At this time, transparent plates or invisible fixed wires are used. Improper use of these appliances can lead to tooth movement. Therefore, during the consolidation period, the use of the appliance is checked by periodically participating in the examination sessions.

What are the options for Orthodontic treatment in adults, are there esthetic methods where wires are not recognized?

In adults, treatment is performed by means of metal or ceramic brackets that are constantly glued to the teeth by the Orthodontist and removed at the end of the treatment, and orthodontic wires that pass through these brackets. In this method, called fixed orthodontic treatment, the brackets are affixed to the front or rear surfaces of the teeth. This treatment is applied to individuals of all ages with healthy teeth, gums and bone support tissue. Porcelain brackets affixed to the front face of the teeth are plastic Orthodontic treatments, with metal brackets attached to the back face of the teeth (Lingual system) and moving transparent plates (Invisalign) installed outside the food.

When is treatment (Invisalign) orthodonti used with moving transparent plates?

Moving transparent plates are esthetic orthodontic treatments that are applied to correct certain amounts of diametrics that occur in cutters and are not visible from the front. the 0.40 mm thick plates are specially prepared for each patient and replaced until they are corrected by 2-week periods. Approximately 18 hours of daily use is recommended. Depending on the treatment performed with fixed brackets and wires, the indication is different and good patient cooperation is required.

Are there limits in orthodontic treatment, when surgical procedures are applied, what is Orthodontic Surgery?

In adults, dental capricity treatments are performed in individuals with healthy teeth, gums and bone tissue, but in cases where skeletal disorders are also present, the method of Orthodontic Surgery combined with orthodontic disorders is applied. In this method, the Orthodontic treatment before the chin operation is used to smooth the external curves, and then the normal jaw and tooth closure is provided with plastic surgeon and Orthodontist planning and single or double jaw operation.