The first appointment is a consultation. No active treatment will be carried out at this visit. Clinical measurements of your teeth and face will be taken. It is important at this stage to establish your concerns, needs and what orthodontic treatment may be able to do for you. At this appointment, you will be given general information of possible treatment methods, approximate treatment time and fees.
The next step would involve a complete orthodontic examination in the form of study models, facial photographs and complete intra-oral and extra-oral X-rays. A comprehensive treatment plan will then be drawn up and you will be provided with the following:
- Complete treatment plan with objectives
- Possible alternatives
- Estimated treatment time
- Total fee structure
For NHS patients: following the approval of your case, arrangements will be made for the fitting of your braces.
what are the different types of braces?
For adult and children who embark on private orthodontic treatment, there are a number of treatment appliances available. The most appropriate appliance will be carefully selected to suit your needs.
how are braces fitted?
- Removable Braces: This consists of a resin/plastic base with bespoke metal wire components and simply clips into place.
- Fixed Braces: Your teeth will firstly be cleaned and conditioned before little square metal or ceramic buttons are glued to the teeth. A thin piece of wire is then held into the buttons using elastics.
- Clear Aligners: After the orthodontist has taken bite impressions of your teeth, you will be provided with a series of bespoke clear, removable aligners. These are simply inserted into place and are removed for eating, drinking and cleaning.
do braces hurt?
The process of fitting the braces does not hurt.
Braces use gentle pressure to move teeth over time and the patient may experience some discomfort for the first few days. The level of discomfort varies between individuals. There may be an increase in saliva flow, minor temporary speech effects, feeling of tightness, tenderness when biting and slight looseness in the teeth. Please be reassured that these are all normal symptoms and using mild painkillers like paracetamol will help.
Parts of the braces may rub on the lips, cheeks and tongue. A small piece of soft orthodontic wax can be moulded onto any irritating spot on the brace to minimise discomfort.
After the initial settling period, you will become less conscious of them during your day-to-day life.
do i have to have teeth out?
Not everyone will require teeth to be removed, but there may be cases where this is advisable, for example severe crowding of the teeth. There may be several options and you will be fully informed about the advantages and disadvantages of each.
Each of us is a unique individual, so your Orthodontist will use his/her expertise to gather all necessary information (x-ray films, model, photographs) before determining a treatment plan that would achieve the best possible result and one that is right for you.
how long does treatment take?
This often depends on the age, complexity of the case and the cooperation of the patient. Most people need to wear their brace for eighteen months to two years. You will generally have your brace adjusted every four to six weeks.
Orthodontic treatment is a team effort. Good compliance with professional advice such as keeping teeth clean, not breaking the braces and adhering to appointments will help to reduce overall treatment time. It must be borne in mind that the most sophisticated treatment plan or appliance therapy will fail to produce a satisfactory result if you do not adhere to the professional advice of your Orthodontist.
Whilst Orthodontic treatment requires a level of commitment, this conservative and reliable approach used to provide straight teeth is definitely worth the investment. You will be rewarded with a confident lasting beautiful smile.
can i still have braces if i have crowns, veneers or fillings?
Technological advancements and clinical research have revolutionised orthodontic treatment over the past few years. Braces can be easily stuck on crown/veneers or fillings using special glues. Providing that the teeth beneath crowns/veneers or fillings are healthy, orthodontic treatment can commence or be continued.
what if there’s an emergency?
Fortunately, it is rare to have serious orthodontic emergencies. However, problems may arise in the form of broken or lost braces and long wires. If this occurs, please telephone the practice as soon as possible for advice or an emergency appointment. Outside normal surgery hours, please leave your details on our telephone answering machine and we will return your call as soon as possible. Tel no. 0131 346 0260 during working hours.
Outside normal surgery hours, please leave your details on our telephone answering machine and we will return your call as soon as possible or call the emergency mobile tel 07878020554 if it is really urgent.
Any irritation caused by broken braces or long wires can be minimised by covering the area with soft orthodontic wax until you are able to attend the clinic.