If you’re thinking about undergoing orthodontic treatment, you may want to read our list of frequently asked questions….
Q. What is the difference between an orthodontist and a dentist?
A. Orthodontists have specialist training, in addition to the training needed to become a general dentist. Generally, it takes a minimum of 8 years to become an orthodontist – first you need a bachelors degree in dental surgery (5 years of dental school) and then 3 years of specialist training in orthodontics which gains you a further qualification. With this qualification you can call yourself an orthodontist and you must be registered with the General Dental Council on their specialist list. If you’re not registered as a specialist you are not an orthodontist. Many orthodontists continue training once they are qualified, to grow their specialist knowledge, allowing them to perform more procedures in their practices.
Q. How has orthodontics evolved over the years?
A. The origins of orthodontics date back to Ancient Egypt, when animal intestines were used as orthodontic bands, applying pressure to teeth to realign them. Nowadays, orthodontics makes use of digital technology to create dental impressions and X-rays for example.
Q. How can orthodontics help me?
A. Orthodontics encompasses many types of appliances and methods designed to straighten teeth such as Invisalign, Smile Rapide, traditional fixed braces and lingual braces. Invisalign and lingual braces are classed as ‘invisible’ treatments. They are cosmetic-friendly solutions to straightening misaligned teeth and there is no compromise on the quality of treatment. Invisalign is also an example of a removable appliance.
Q. What are the differences between removable and fixed braces?
A. Removable and fixed braces both have their advantages. The former allow you to continue enjoying the foods you love, as they do not become stuck in-between the brackets and wires (because there aren’t any involved). They are also easier to clean and generally more comfortable than fixed appliances, again due to the lack of brackets and arch wires.
Fixed methods take the discipline out of your hands, as you do not need to keep replacing them as you would with Invisalign aligners. The success rate with fixed methods is extremely high and they have a great reputation for solving fundamental orthodontic complications.
Q. Am I eligible for orthodontic treatment?
A. Contrary to what many believe, orthodontic treatment has little to do with your age. Many adults come and see us here at Park Lane and worry that they’re too old for braces. In fact, about 80% of our patients are adults. As long as your dental health is sound, there is no common reason why you cannot straighten your teeth in your older years.
You can check out a further page of frequently asked questions here.