Braces exert gentle and continuous pressure on the teeth, guiding teeth into their proper positions. Elastics may be used as well to help the upper teeth align correctly with the lower teeth.
The Canadian Association of Orthodontists recommends that children be evaluated by their family dentist by age 8 to see if orthodontic support will be required to ensure good alignment and development.
It is generally true that if treatment is started early, while the bones of the face and jaw are still growing, it is possible to achieve better results in less time. Treatment started early can help create more space in the mouth to prevent crowding.
Of course, if problems are evident earlier your child should be evaluated as soon as it is apparent that help if needed.
Having teeth straightened as an adult
More than a third of the people wearing orthodontic devices in Canada are adults. Many people choose orthodontic treatment for purely cosmetic reasons, but many choose to have treatment to:
- correct misalignment of the jaw because it causes headaches, muscle tension and other discomfort
- improve dental health since straight, evenly spaced teeth are easier to clean and less prone to decay
Smilemakers offers systems that reduce the amount of time you need to wear braces. If one of these systems will work to correct your unique dental issues, visits every 6 weeks will ensure the progress of treatment and you can expect to wear these braces for an average of 24 months.
Alternatives to metal braces
Depending on the kind of correction needed, we may be able to fit you with Invisalign invisible braces, or ceramic braces which can be the colour of your teeth. We will be happy to discuss the options with you.
Maintenance while wearing braces
- Brush your teeth after every meal and floss daily.
- Use a fluoride toothpaste to prevent cavities from forming.
- Avoid sugary, sticky or chewy foods which can get stuck in your braces and promote bacterial growth.
- Visit your dentist every 6 months or as recommended for thorough cleaning and dental exams.
Once your braces are removed, your teeth will want to move back to their original positions. You will need to wear a retainer regularly as instructed to help keep your new smile in place.