21st Century Orthodontic Treatment
The new millennium has arrived, and with it some pretty amazing technological advancements. Never before have we, as a society, had so many incredible opportunities before us. What an exciting time to explore orthodontic treatment!
Crooked, crowded teeth are hard to clean and maintain. Tooth decay, gum disease, and eventual tooth loss can result. Improper jaw alignment can contribute to wearing away of tooth surfaces (resulting in expensive restorations, caps, bridges, crowns, etc.), inefficient chewing (function is limited), and TMJ symptoms (popping, pain, locking of the jaw joint). Chronic headaches and face or neck pain can become a way of life.
While a beautiful smile full of confidence may be the most obvious benefit of treatment for many people, there is more to be gained than meets the eye.
"But She's Too Young For Braces!"
We don't treat our heart patients like we did in the 70's or 80's, so why should we treat our orthodontic patients that way? The American Association of Orthodontists recommends a consultation for ALL children by age seven. That's because there is a window of opportunity to utilise a child's growth and development. We can eliminate the need for permanent extractions (see Expansion Versus Extraction) and avoid lengthy, difficult treatments with our incredible advancements in Orthodontics.
"I'm too Old For Braces!"
You are NEVER too old to improve your smile, your bite or your self-esteem! With the average life expectancy continuing to rise, why live 30, 40, 50+ years with problems that can be corrected in 16-24 months?
What about Adult Treatment?
Adult orthodontic patients discover that dramatic improvements in appearance and dental health can be obtained due to incredible advancements in tooth movement. Dr. Bhatia finishes most of her adult cases in 12-18 months with excellent stability and esthetics. Our adult patients make up about 20% of our practice. (see Health Benefits of Straight Teeth)
Why do Adults Want Braces?
Our adult patients represent a wide range of issues. Some patients had braces as a child and didn't wear their retainers. (We now teach our patients that retainers are a lifetime commitment of night-time wear only, as teeth can and will move for a variety of reasons…retainers are FOREVER!) Some patients come to us after their children are grown, when they have decided it is "now their turn to have a beautiful smile." Financial stability may have been attained, and many employers now offer orthodontic insurance benefits. We also see patients who need to close space from missing teeth in order to restore (crowns, bridges, etc) remaining teeth properly. Others merely want to straighten front teeth for esthetic reasons. As you can see, each case is unique and requires customized, individual attention.
Dr. Bhatia offers the following treatment options to her patients who seek results later in life:
- Invisalign® - the new 3-D computer technology that can now help straighten mild to moderately crowded and/or spaced teeth WITHOUT BRACES
- The less visible clear and gold brackets in addition to the traditional silver stainless steel
- High tech materials that decrease the amount of treatment time and frequency of visits with minimal discomfort during tooth alignment
- An office that is professional and specialized in all aspects: technically proficient clinical assistants, and friendly front staff