Braces

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Orthodontics, or the movement of badly aligned teeth to the correct position, is one of the fastest growing sectors in UK dentistry. It is estimated that over 17 million patients in the UK would benefit from orthodontics and more and more teenagers and adults are demanding clear or invisible appliances. A recent study (the world’s largest orthodontic dental trial) demonstrated that the corrective movement of tooth position significantly improved a patient’s confidence and self-esteem.

Braces – fixed appliance

Before placing braces on your teeth, you will need a check-up for decay or gum problems. Do visit your dentist or the School Dental Clinic regularly, even when you are on braces.

Braces can be fixed or removable

Fixed braces consist of brackets and bands bonded or cemented to your teeth (to get a hold of them) and very thin metal wires that gently push your teeth into their right positions.

The wire is tied into the brackets with a steel ligature or a coloured plastic ring. Some brackets have clips to hold the wires and no ties are needed. Brackets can be made of metal or tooth-coloured ceramic or plastic. Ordinary fixed braces are bonded to the front of your teeth. There are also braces that can be bonded on the back of your teeth (lingual braces).

Removable braces are sometimes used when you are still growing or if you still have baby teeth left. Functional removable braces are used to change jaw growth to normalise your bite.

Steps in fixed braces treatment

First Visit:

X-rays, photos and impressions for plaster study models of your teeth are taken. Your orthodontist will plan your treatment using these records. Very often, permanent teeth are removed when they are crowded and there is not enough space in the jaws for all of them. The extractions are done just before or just after the fitting of your braces.

Second Visit:

Your orthodontist will explain the treatment plan and the braces suitable for your condition. Before braces are fitted, separators (small plastic  ‘doughnuts’) are placed between your molars for a week to create spaces for the molar bands.

Third and Fourth Visits:

Bands are cemented and brackets are bonded to the front of your teeth.

Subsequent Visits:

(Every 4 to 8 weeks) Adjustments are made to the braces by way of wire-changes, adding springs, elastics or other accessories.

NOTE: Accessories are necessary to make your braces work. Elastics are often used to get your upper and lower teeth to bite together properly. Facemasks, headgear or biteplates are sometimes used with fixed braces. It is very important to use all accessories exactly as you have been told, if not, progress of the treatment stops and may in some cases, reverse.

Frequently asked questions

What are the benefits of orthodontic treatment?

  • Better appearance of teeth, smile and face.
  • Improved self-esteem and self-confidence.
  • Cleaner, healthier teeth.
  • An even bite for improved jaw alignment and function.

How long does Orthodontic treatment take?

Traditional orthodontic treatment can take up to 2 years (occasionally longer) to complete. Then you will have to wear a retaining brace to stop your teeth from moving back!

How often will I need to come in for Adjustments?

You will need to come in every 6-8 weeks to have the brace adjusted.

Will it hurt?

Fixed appliances are designed to be as smooth as possible. However, in a mouth that is not used to them, initial discomfort is not uncommon. Wax is available to apply to the appliance should the appliance rub at the beginning.

How much will it cost?

The initial consultation fee is £150 including X-rays (OPG and CEPH), study models and personalised treatment plan. This fee includes a 30 minute appointment required for your initial consultation and a second appointment for you to discuss treatment plan and the options available to you. Your consultation fee will be deducted from your treatment fees if you begin treatment within 4 months of your consultation.

We are also delighted to be able to offer the “Invisalign” system which uses clear aligners and we have enclosed separate details about this. The fees for the Invisalign clear brace system are slightly more – all the treatment fees quoted here are a guide price only, for a quotation for your particular case you will need a consultation.

Can I have a tooth coloured brace?

Sticky toffee, chewing gum, hard crusty bread, toast, pizza or any hard or excessively fibrous foods should be avoided. Food such as apples should be cut up into small pieces before being chewed gently on the back teeth. Fizzy drinks are also best avoided. These contain acid which can damage your teeth, especially if they are not kept meticulously clean around the appliance brackets.

What do I do if I break my brace?

If you break your appliance, this is likely to increase the length of treatment so you need to ring straight away to make an appointment to get the appliance repaired.

Will I still need to see my own Dentist while I am having orthodontic treatment?

Yes. It is very important to keep appointments with your own dentist to maintain the health of your teeth. Regular Hygienist appointments are a vital part of your orthodontic treatment as you will find it more difficult to keep your teeth clean when you have fixed orthodontic appliances. Please ask your dentist about the availability of hygienist appointments at your practice, if these are not available to you, we can always arrange for you to see one of our hygienists or Dental Therapists here at the Dental Spa.

What do I need to do now?

The first step is to arrange your consultation appointment. We are able to offer convenient appointments for evenings or Saturday mornings. Winchester House is ideally placed from all locations and we offer plenty of on-site complimentary parking for our clients. 

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Thank you so much for helping me achieve the smile I've always wanted. I can now smile with confidence!

Anon, 2018
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Thank you for giving me fantastic straight teeth. I cannot tell you how much my confidence has grown. I wish you all the best success.

Anon, 2018
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