The main aim of alignment dentistry is not only to improve the aesthetics but also to improve the total health of the patient.
Alignment dentistry is the correct arrangement of teeth in relationship to the adjacent teeth, the dentition opposite to it and the supporting bone.
The term used for alignment is referred to as occlusion. It should be kept in mind that ideally the teeth should fit easily without any wounding (due to lack of space) or spaces in between the teeth. Furthermore the teeth should not be rotated or twisted and in normal occlusion the teeth of the upper jaw slightly overlap the teeth of the lower jaw, otherwise in the absence of any above the occlusion known as malocclusion. The techniques used for alignment of teeth can be performed at any age although certain limitations are applied regarding age like in old age the only limitation is the physical condition of the patient and his willing to cooperate.
Similarly children teeth alignment can be done with the help of natural bone growth as well to speed up the alignment procedure but this bone growth is not applicable in case of adults hence results in longer function of treatment.
Different alignment techniques are:
Standard regular braces
These are made up of metal and are very reliable. In the past heavy duty metal braces are used but these days the advancement in dentistry and orthodontics make it possible to use the smaller metallic braces that one is incorporated with heat-activated arch wires that use own body heat to speed up the results and reduce the treatment associated pain.
Although metal braces are the most noticeable form of braces but most cost effective and now colorful bands available to make the treatment interesting for patient especially kids.
The ceramics braces also known as clear braces are of the same shape and size as traditional braces but since they are clear and have the color of teeth so aesthetically more acceptable by patients.
Although they are aesthetically good but they are more expensive than Meta braces and greater care is required to maintain the clear appearance on these ceramic braces may stain easily.
The modern orthodontics have a wide variety of options and some are so advanced that no one ever know that you are wearing braces at all but still the lingual braces are the least common form of braces. They are exactly like the traditional metal braces however the only difference is that they are fixed to the inner side of the teeth hence completely invisible from exterior observation.
Lingual braces have the maximum disadvantage because they are not only expensive but difficult to clean with greater initial discomfort as compared to the traditional braces and as their adjustment period is longer hence routine adjustment are difficult and make for lengthy appointments.
Invisalign also called removable or pre-planned aligners, the most popular form of modern orthodontic treatment these days. This treatment consists of a series of 18-30 clear, plastic teeth aligners that resembles the mouth guard. The aligners are removed according to sequence in approximately every two weeks and replaced to next one in order to progress towards results.
Although it is completely invisible with no restriction of food and beverage intake, also it can be removed from mouth by any time, the main disadvantages are that it is most expensive and not suitable for all orthodontics cases. Also the treatment duration is longer than the traditional braces. May be easily lost and the replacements are costly. Furthermore invisalign is only available for adults and teens.