What Is Orthodontics? What’s the difference between an orthodontist and a dentist? What is an Orthodontist And What Do They Do? Learn more about common orthodontic issues in children and orthodontic treatments, including alignment, kids braces, and much more.
Orthodontics is one of the specialties in dentistry whose work is least commonly understood. Unlike other dental specialists like Pediatric dentists, periodontology specialists and prosthodontic specialists whose exact roles in dentistry can easily be put into words, Orthodontics tends to be slightly harder to explain to someone who doesn’t have a little bit of background information as to what the wider objectives of dentistry are.
Ultimately, though, orthodontics might be described as the branch of dentistry that concerns itself with the ‘proper alignment’ of the teeth and their supportive structures (which sometimes calls for maxillofacial interventions) because the proper alignment of the teeth and their supportive structures – or lack of it – is often inextricably linked with the alignment of the maxilla and other components that make up what is considered the ‘face.’ It is also in orthodontics that people suffering from the rather infamous teeth spacing problems can find typically find help, as such problems (where the teeth are said to be, for instance too crowded) are more often than not rooted in the alignment of the teeth rather that than the number of teeth per se.
Traditionally, Orthodontic procedures were typically carried out when the mis-alignment of teeth and their supportive structures caused serious clinical discomfort (or lack of dental function) to the patient, but this has changed to a situation where more and more people are looking for the help of orthodontics for purely cosmetic reasons. This shows that like all branches and sub-branches of medicine, orthodontics has not been spared the pressure from ‘consumers of medicine’ to help them look better in an increasingly image conscious society. If anything, Orthodontics has turned out to be one of the areas of mainstream medicine most inundated with requests from people who want to use the power of modern medicine ‘to look better’ because its core objectives of maintaining proper dental alignment makes it perfect for the cosmetic dentistry applications. Indeed, dentistry students looking to later go into cosmetic dentistry are advised to ensure they take in as much of orthodontics as they can, because most of the help people are seeking for in cosmetic dentistry tends to be orthodontics-related.
Orthodontic specialists use a variety of tools and procedures to meet their goals, depending on the severity of problems they are presented with. Major cases of dental (and maxillofacial) misalignment – the type that can distort the whole face, and which are often inborn rather than acquired usually call for outright surgical interventions if they are to be completely resolved. Milder cases of misalignment, the variety most commonly sought by relatively good looking people who are keen to look even better, however, can usually be well resolved with the help of various alignment tools like Simply 5 (where the said Simply 5 is an orthodontic alignment tray). Orthodontic tools like Simply 5 – and others of its ilk – seek to treat the alignment problems that people seek the help of orthodontic specialists mostly for, especially the teeth crowding issues, in an effective yet non invasive way.