Most people are not lucky enough to grow into adulthood with perfectly straight teeth. Those who do sometimes find that as they age, their teeth become crowded and crooked. Whether you or your child’s issue is cosmetic or functional, the dentists at NE Dental Associates of Portland, Oregon, can help you. Our dental clinic provides a number of options for orthodontia, because standard metal braces aren’t right for everyone.
Who Needs Orthodontia?
Orthodontia was once considered a cosmetic procedure and not covered by health insurance companies. However, now most insurances cover at least a portion of orthodontic treatment, with the understanding that having teeth in the correct places is critical to mouth function.
Patients who seek orthodontia usually do so to straighten crooked teeth, close gaps between teeth and bring them into proper alignment to improve the appearance of their smile.
However, there are also often other underlying issues when teeth are crooked. Many orthodontic patients have an overbite, underbite or crossbite. These are all the results of a misaligned jaw. A severely misaligned jaw may require surgery, but less-serious cases can be corrected with orthodontia.
A misaligned jaw or problems with teeth can also result in temporomandibular jaw disorder, or TMJ. With this condition, the jaw joint often makes popping or cracking sounds while chewing. TMJ can be painful and cause headaches, trouble with eating and other problems.
To address all these and other issues, the dentists at our Portland dental clinic use various orthodontic solutions.
Braces in which the brackets and wires are made of metal are the most common type of braces. They’ve been around the longest and are often cheaper than other types of orthodontia. Young children sometimes enjoy selecting different colored rubber bands for their teeth at their monthly visits to tighten the braces.
Ceramic braces are less noticeable than metal braces because the brackets are made out of clear ceramic. The wires, however, are still metal. Ceramic braces are slightly less durable than metal braces, so they may not be right for athletes.
Invisalign is a revolutionary method for shifting teeth back into place with clear plastic trays, rather than metal or ceramic brackets and wires. A mold is taken of the patient’s mouth and the aligners are built based on this model. The aligners snap into the mouth similarly to a retainer, and the patient changes them usually once a month as the teeth shift into their proper positions.
Portland teens and adults love Invisalign because the clear trays are much harder to notice and more comfortable than metal braces. Patients wear the trays almost 24 hours a day, removing them to eat and brush.
Portland Dental Clinic for Orthodontia
Our full-service Portland dentist office provides complete dental care, including cleaning, exams, restorations, cosmetic dentistry, oral surgery, wisdom tooth removal, dental implants and other teeth replacement solutions.
Call our dental clinic today to book an appointment to learn more about getting braces.