Orthodontics is that branch of dentistry which specialises in the diagnosis, prevention and treatment of problems in the alignment of teeth and jaws.

The technical term for these problems is malocclusion, which literally means bad bite.

Orthodontic treatment involves the design and use of corrective appliances (such as braces, plates, headgears and functional appliances) to bring the teeth and jaws into proper alignment.

What are some signs that braces may be needed?

    * Crowded or overlapping teeth   

    * Spaces between the teeth   

    * Upper front teeth protrude excessively over the lower teeth, or are 'bucky'

    * Upper front teeth cover the majority of the lower teeth when biting together (deep bite)

    * Upper front or back teeth are behind or inside the lower teeth (underbite or crossbite)

    * The upper and lower front teeth do not touch when biting together (open bite)

    * Finger or thumb sucking habits which continue after six or seven years old

    * Difficulty chewing

    * Teeth wearing unevenly or excessively

    * The lower jaw shifts to one side or the other when biting together

What are some possible benefits of orthodontics?

    * A more attractive smile

    * Better function of the teeth

    * Increase in self-confidence

    * Increased ability to clean the teeth - helping to prevent tooth decay and gum disease

    * prevent gum trauma and damage by mal-positioned teeth

    * Improved force distribution and wear patterns of the teeth

    * Better long term health of teeth and gums

    * Guide permanent teeth into more favorable positions

    * Reduce the risk of injury to protruded front teeth

    * Aids in optimizing other dental treatment

The first consultation

During this visit we perform a thorough clinical examination. This enables us to give you advice on the treatment options available, when treatment should commence, the duration of treatment, and the approximate cost. 

If you decide to proceed with treatment, an appointment is made to collect records.


Records include:

       *      Plaster models of the teeth.

       *      Photographs of the teeth and face.

       *      X-rays of the teeth and jaws.

Records allow us to analyse your case accurately. They are also used as a record of the existing malocclusion for future reference.

Treatment Planning

At this visit we will discuss the treatment plan(s) which have been formulated using information obtained from the first consultation and records.

Then, arrangements are made to commence treatment or, if it is too early, to review you periodically until it is an appropriate time to commence treatment.

Extractions and other preliminary procedures 

Sometimes it is necessary to remove teeth to gain sufficient space to align the remaining teeth.

Any decayed teeth should be filled and the teeth will need to be cleaned before orthodontic treatment is started.

What Appliances are used to correct malocclusions. 

Braces are the most efficient and accurate way of moving teeth. They are fixed to the teeth for the duration of active orthodontic treatment. 

Braces consist of the following components:

       ▪      Brackets are "handles" which are bonded to the outside surface of teeth. Metal brackets are the most common type but tooth coloured brackets are also available. 

       ▪      Archwires deliver the force to move teeth.

       ▪      Ligatures are tiny rubber rings or fine twisted wires used to tie the archwire to each bracket. The rubber rings are usually grey, but coloured ligatures are very popular.

       ▪      Bands are flat metal rings cemented around a tooth to provide a stronger means of attaching a bracket (or any other type of fitting), these are usually placed on the very back teeth.

How does orthodontic treatment work? 

Braces use steady gentle pressure to gradually move teeth into their proper positions. The brackets that are placed on your teeth and the archwire that connects them are the main components. When the archwire is placed into the brackets, it tries to return to its original shape. As it does so, it applies pressure to move your teeth to their new, more ideal positions.

How long does orthodontic treatment take?

Treatment times vary on a case-by-case basis, but the average time is 18 to 24 months. Actual treatment time can be affected by rate of growth and severity of the correction necessary. Treatment length is also dependent upon patient compliance. Maintaining good oral hygiene and keeping regular appointments are important in keeping treatment time on schedule.

How much does it cost?

Every case is different but fees may vary from $4500 to $8000 for a full orthodontic case.

Do braces look terrible?

The metal braces obviously will look metallic but we can jazz them up a bit by placing coloured ligature ties on the brackets to make a fashion statement.

Alternatively we may use ceramic bracket which are the same colour as your teeth so they blend in quite well - you will still see the wire though.

Invisalign® - Invisible Braces.

If you definitely want the most invisible looking appliance to correct your occlusion then Invisalign® is for you.

Get Directions