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Orthodontists use braces and retainers to gradually correct crooked or misaligned teeth.

Braces and retainers work by gently applying consistent pressure to the teeth, over an extended period of time. This causes the teeth to slowly shift their position to where your orthodontist guides them, in a more attractive and consistent arrangement.

There are various types of braces, made from ceramic, plastic or metal, and secured in a many of ways.

How is it performed?

Once your orthodontist has installed the braces, they will use a special tool to tighten the ‘arch wire’, which is held by the brackets at the back of the teeth.  This increases the pressure on the teeth slightly, forcing them to re-position.

Over the course of your treatment, your will have to return to your orthodontist approximately once a month for the next two years or so, so that they can re-tighten your braces and ensure your teeth are moving into the correct position.

Is it right for me?

People who choose to get braces usually wish to have their uneven teeth or crooked smile corrected, as they get self-conscious about even smiling.

What result can I expect?

Results of braces are usually very good, and almost completely permanent.


Once the treatment is complete and your braces are removed, you will be required to wear a retainer for several months after, to help keep your teeth in their new positions.

The retainer will usually take the form of a thin wire, or a clear mold in the shape of your teeth.

Your orthodontist will advise you as top when and how to wear your retainers.

Depending on how well your teeth responded to the braces, and your general physiology and lifestyle, the retainer may be required to be worn only at night for a limited period, or permanently.

Unless your dentist is required to remove teeth, to make space for your teeth to move into, then your recovery period will be very brief.

Questions on Braces and Retainers

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