And we get why that is! As much as braces have advanced by leaps and bounds over the years, with stronger, more lightweight materials and fewer annoying ties and bands to get lost or broken, it’s still a hassle. Who wouldn’t want to know when they’ll finally be free?
That’s why we’ve asked Dr. Selden to sit down with us and give a brief overview of what your orthodontic treatment is looking to accomplish and how you can help that along! So keep reading, and we’ll find out more below!
What are my braces doing?
While every patient is unique, there are three general goals to most orthodontic treatments that combine to create your new smile! These goals are, broadly, resolving issues around spacing or crowding, aligning the teeth, so they’re in an appropriate position, and then correcting the bite. Once we’ve met all three goalposts, you can be sure your braces are ready to come off!
Goal #1: Resolving
Some common issues affecting orthodontic patients are crowding and spacing. First, your treatment cannot proceed until there is enough room in the mouth for that to occur. Your braces will correct crowding by shifting the positions of the teeth over time due to the continuous gentle pressure of the equipment. Likewise, in the event of spacing, the braces will accomplish the inverse by bringing them closer together. We can then proceed to goal #2 – aligning.
Goal #2: Aligning
Now that there’s room, your braces will align and straighten your teeth. Your braces will align the arches via the action wires, elastic chains, springs, and other auxiliaries that rotate, tip, and torque the teeth into their desired positions. Often, your orthodontist will adjust the positions of individual brackets during this phase of treatment. As the conditions in your mouth change, brackets may serve to align teeth more efficiently by occupying new spaces.
Goal #3: Correcting
Now that there’s enough room and your teeth have been properly positioned, the third and final step is ensuring the upper and lower jaws come together correctly in a healthy bite pattern.
It’s important to ensure that your bite is correct from three perspectives – front to back, top to bottom, and side to side. In many cases, your braces can accomplish this on their own using continuous pressure to gently guide the jaws into their proper positions. In cases of extreme misalignment, Dr. Selden may refer you to an orthodontic surgeon with whom he’ll work closely to develop the best plan for your bite.
By the time your braces are working on this “bite phase” of treatment, you’re probably wondering when they’re coming off. As your teeth have been properly spaced and aligned by this point, you’re likely looking in the mirror and thinking, “yea, I look good!”
Well, hey, you do look good! However, it’s vital that your braces are given the necessary time to align the jaws, as this step is going to be crucial to ensuring that everything stays how it should be.
What can I do to help?
While Dr. Selden and the team here at Selden Orthodontics are going to handle all the work of ensuring that your braces give you the best smile possible, it’s important that you take an active role in your treatment! Brush and floss regularly, and be sure never to miss any appointments!
Your regular check-ups are vital to ensuring that your orthodontic treatment goes smoothly and as quickly as possible. Dr. Selden can make any adjustments that need to be made and keep the ball rolling toward your eventual oral liberation! So be sure never to miss an appointment!
At Selden Orthodontics, We Love to See You Smile!
Thank you for taking the time to learn more about your orthodontic care. Everyone here is committed to your treatment, and we think it’s great that you’ve decided to read up on it and be more involved.
Remember, at Selden Orthodontics; you aren’t a number – you’re family. That’s why we want to do everything possible to keep you smiling, and that’s why we’re so grateful you’ve trusted us with your care. Thanks for reading, and have a great day!