A GUIDE TO
What is progressive orthodontics?
Progressive orthodontics is the diagnosis, prevention and correction of malpositioned teeth and jaws. Progressive orthodontics straightens teeth and positions them, while also aiming to improve dental health with metal, ceramic and clear braces, including invisalign and retainers in Red Bank and Middletown, NJ
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What is progressive orthodontic treatment?
Progressive orthodontics includes a simplified system of orthodontic treatment that includes a diagnosis confirmation and treatment plan system that is accessible through computer software. The most up to date diagnosis and treatment planning is available for the individual case.
While most orthodontic bracket and wire systems have only 24 brackets to treat the many types of malocclusions, the “Progressive” system uses over 250 bracket and band variations, with endless possibilities, and constantly improving brackets.
Standard orthodontic bracket systems require the dentist to make multiple and time-consuming wire bends. Only the most talented and artistic clinicians can create the best arch form. The progressive system uses the Individual Patient or “IP” bracket appliance that eliminates wire bending by incorporating the result in the bracket design and letting the wire do all the work. This simplifies and speed treatment and allows superior results with minimal time-consuming wire bending and finishing.
After the initial diagnosis, and before treatment starts, the dentist selects a specific one of hundreds of IP brackets that will move the tooth in the required direction, rather than having one of 24 generic brackets that requires extra treatment time to complete treatment.
After the brackets are placed, cases progress rapidly with multiple tooth movements performed simultaneously and in the proper direction, reducing unwanted movements and round tripping (moving the tooth accidentally in one direction and then back again to the correct spot).
METAL WIRES and BRACKETS
Metal brackets and wires are the traditional method of moving teeth. Invented in 1728 by Pierre Fauchard, they have been advancing ever since, and now more comfortable and the most rapid type of treatment. They are made of a combination of stainless steel and Nickel Titanium wires and brackets and straighten teeth by using slow constant steady pressure applied by a springy wire attached to the bracket with rubber bands or small ligature wires.
These stainless-steel brackets clip wires in place without rubber bands, so they require a few less visits, and can’t lose the elastic holding the wire in place. A small clip holds the wire in place instead. They can be slightly less accurate than small ligature wires (which are the most accurate) to hold the wire in place.
CLEAR (CERAMIC) BRACKETS
Clear brackets less visible on your teeth than metal brackets. They are used when cosmetics is a concern. Because of the material, they break more often, are difficult to clean, and are harder to remove than metal braces. They also slow the treatment more than metal brackets. For cosmetic reasons, they are used more often on upper front teeth.
Clear aligners like Invisalign are springy clear plastic trays that work like braces but are removable to eat, drink and socialize. Home care like brushing and flossing is made very simple compared to metal braces. A series of trays are pre-made and changed every week or two. Each next aligner has a new shape, so the teeth are guided into the proper position after every new aligner is placed. There is no chance of a metal bracket popping out or a wire scratching the inside of the mouth. In some cases, the best results are obtained with a brief treatment with braces and finishing with aligners.
In all orthodontic treatment, there will be a few teeth moving backwards into the beginning position. This is called relapse. To avoid relapse, the best treatment is to use a retainer. This can be made of clear plastic like the aligner, metal and plastic (called a Hawley), or a thin metal wire bonded to the inside of the front teeth. Each method has pros and cons, and it is best to consult with your dentist to find the right retainer design for you.