Orthodontics Overview

Orthodontic Treatment in Chicago & Glenview, IL

Your smile is often an indicator of your confidence, but misaligned teeth can quickly erode that confidence. Here at Yummy Dental & Orthodontics For Kids, we understand the difficulties that crooked teeth or malocclusions present for children and adults. The good news is that we can help. Orthodontics is the treatment of issues such as malocclusions by applying light and constant force in order to guide teeth into more appropriate positions and gently reshape the bone. We can use a variety of convenient orthodontic treatments to help you achieve a beautiful new smile – whether you're a teenager getting braces for the first time or pursuing adult orthodontic treatment!

When Should I Bring My Child in for an Orthodontic Evaluation?

While we treat patients of all ages, one of the most common questions we hear is parents asking when to first bring their child in for orthodontic treatment. The answer may be earlier than you think! In keeping with the American Association of Orthodontists, we recommend parents bring kids in for an orthodontic evaluation at age 7. 

At this age, the back bite has established itself, which means your Chicago orthodontist can evaluate all tooth relationships. This lets us spot both current orthodontic problems and problems that may develop over time. In some cases, we may elect to begin early orthodontic treatment right away, but we'll often elect to monitor your child's development until the ideal time for treatment presents itself.

Am I Too Old for Orthodontics?

Bite problems often start to present themselves around the age of seven, when orthodontic treatment can begin. But while this is the ideal age for orthodontic evaluation, it's not the only time we can provide orthodontic treatment. 

The truth is, we can realign the teeth at any age. Even fully mature teeth can be moved into better positions through appliances like braces and Invisalign. It's true what they say: it's never too late for a beautiful smile! Roughly a quarter of our orthodontic patients are adults, and convenient treatment options like Invisalign make it easier than ever to achieve a new smile as an adult. 

What Problems Can Orthodontic Treatment Fix?

Orthodontic Problems.Every patient is different, and your Chicago orthodontist is proud to be able to treat a wide range of orthodontic problems through convenient, high-quality orthodontic care. Here are a few of the most common malocclusions (bite problems) that we can fix with braces or Invisalign:

  • Excessive overbite
  • Crossbite
  • Open bite
  • Crowding
  • Underbite
  • Excessive spacing

Treatment for these types of issues typically includes the use of braces or aligners in order to gently move the teeth into proper alignment. Because the teeth are held in place by the periodontal ligament—a structure which retains some flexibility, similar to a hammock—moving the teeth isn’t as difficult as many people might suspect. With constant, gentle pressure, we can effectively reposition the teeth over time and help you achieve a gorgeous new smile. 

Types of Orthodontic Braces 

Orthodontic Appliance Options.

When you hear the word "braces," you probably picture someone with a mouthful of metal. And while traditional metal braces are the most common treatment we offer, they're far from the only option! We offer a variety of orthodontic treatments to our patients, and we'll work with you to help you choose the best one for your unique smile. Our treatment options include:

  • Metal braces: The traditional method for straightening teeth. Made from stainless steel, braces use metal brackets and archwires to gently move the teeth. 
  • Ceramic braces: These work the same way as traditional braces, but the brackets are made from a clear ceramic composite material that blends in with the teeth. They offer a more discreet, aesthetically pleasing form of treatment. 
  • Lingual braces: These work the same way as metal braces, with one key difference: the brackets go on the back side (tongue side) of the teeth! This makes them completely invisible when the mouth is closed. 
  • Invisalign: Invisalign does away with brackets and wires entirely, instead using a series of clear, removable aligners to straighten teeth. The aligners are nearly invisible when worn and easy to pop out for eating and oral hygiene. 

Your Chicago orthodontist will work with you to help you understand your needs and choose the best possible treatment option for you. The length of your treatment depends entirely on your specific orthodontic needs, but most patients need braces for a year or two.

The Retention Phase

Once you get your braces off, we know you'll be excited – but you're not out of the woods yet! In fact, post-treatment retention care is vital to the success of your smile. When we remove your braces, we'll fit you with a retainer and provide detailed instructions for wear and care. Following these instructions is vital: without proper retention treatment, your teeth will move back to their old positions and erase your hard work! Wearing retainers is critical to ensuring your new smile lasts a lifetime. 

Schedule a Consultation with Your Chicago, IL Orthodontist!

Orthodontic care can realign your teeth and help you achieve a beautiful, healthy new smile. At Yummy Dental & Orthodontics For Kids, our goal is to help you achieve a healthy, beautiful, confident smile through gentle and effective treatment—no matter your age. To schedule an orthodontic consultation, call us today at (773) 281-8100 for our Chicago office, (847) 729-4700 for our Glenview office, or request one using our easy online form. We can’t wait to hear from you!

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