The five goals of orthodontic treatment:
the aim of treatment is to get you the best possible smile & function lifetime result while minimising your time in braces
optimal facial appearance
This refers to the relationship of different parts of the face to one another, in frontal view (straight on) and profile view (side on). Leonardo Da Vinci was one of the first to describe the proportions for ideal facial aesthetics. We still apply these principles today.
In frontal (forward) view, optimal appearance includes balance and symmetry between the structures on the left and right sides of the face. The mandible (lower jaw) opens and closes in a relatively straight line that indicates the jaw joints are functioning harmoniously.
In profile (side) view, the forehead and chin have relatively equal prominence. The upper and lower lips come together easily, without strain. The nose sits forward of the lips. The cheeks are balanced between the forehead and chin.
Optimal alignment to these proportions supports optimal function of the mouth and face. Allowing for a clear start to the airway that provides easy breathing through the nose in preference to the mouth.
2. Optimal appearance of the teeth
Straight teeth are the classical sign of orthodontic success. We do our best to ensure the whole tooth alignment, including the root positions are as ideal as possible. This reduces the risk of relapse.
This also includes minimising spaces between teeth and replicating particular teeth characteristics such as the angle and rotation of some to look as naturally pleasing as possible.
3. proper contact of the teeth when biting & chewing
The upper teeth are meant to touch the opposing lower teeth when the mouth is closed. Commonly, people have more contact on the back teeth, or more on the front teeth, or one side more than the other.
Orthodontic treatment aims to get as many teeth touching each other as possible when the jaws are closed normally. But only specific teeth need to touch each other when the jaws are moved from side to side, or front to back, such as in chewing actions.
Achieving bite stability helps prevent uneven wear of teeth over time, breakdown from overloading and development of jaw pain and joint problems from uneven loading in daily use.
4. Healthy gums
Moving teeth affects the gums and the ligament that holds the teeth in the jaws. Gum problems are now the leading cause of tooth loss in later life. Loss of gum contours can lead to unsightly black spaces between teeth.
Much care is given to strategically move teeth to help protect the integrity of the gums around each and every tooth for a pleasing long-term smile and function.
5. healthy function of the jaw joints
The jaw joints are the most complex joints in the whole body. Coordinated balanced movement is essential for preventing problems, pain and degeneration throughout life.
Our orthodontic philosophy prioritises the jaw joints in treatment. Without getting these joints happily balanced, it’s almost impossible for straightened teeth to stay in place over time.
“Correct jaw joint balance is key to a stable, long-term pain-free bite and a great smile.”
DR Geoffrey squires | Specialist orthodontist
Your orthodontic treatment is an individually customised journey.
We work with you through 5 important & distinctly tailored stages to achieve a smile & function result we trust you’ll enjoy for the rest of your life.
Initial consult & habit management.
Let’s get to know each other!
Complete orthodontic treatment usually takes a few years. We need to work well together for you to get a finished result we’re both happy with. This stage is completed in the first visit or two.
Management of any speech, airway, digit sucking or tongue posture issues via referral to health practitioners is undertaken prior to us getting started together. We may monitor development for up to a few years.
Jaw & facial analysis & treatment planning.
Now we coordinate the details of your orthodontic flight plan path!
Extensive clinical and radiographic records are taken, measurements and diagnosis made so an effective treatment plan can be determined for smile and function success. This stage generally takes a couple of visits and 2-4 weeks.
Splint & appliance therapy.
A removable splint made and worn to guide the jaw joints and muscles into the best balanced position for function and facial appearance may be required before teeth and bite alignment can begin. This stage can take 12-18 months.
Teeth & bite alignment with braces.
Let’s get moving to your straight teeth destination!
Fixed braces are placed, worn and adjusted as teeth are progressively moved into the planned and best positions in the jaws for bite, gum health and smile aesthetics. This stage generally takes 24-30 months to complete.
Active retention & follow-up care.
Your aesthetic and functional smile has landed!
Treatment goals have been met. Braces are removed, retainers are placed and follow-up care commenced. This stage takes a couple of visits over a few weeks with more periodic reviews in the year ahead. Annual reviews for several years are then recommended.
Kids & teens
grow a fully functional smile.
Children are fabulous to go on an orthodontic journey with. We time our therapies with their natural growth stages to more easily achieve treatment goals. With our strategic help, the opportunity for children to develop to their full facial potential is greatly enhanced.
By gently guiding facial growth and function as children develop, we can reduce the time of treatment in braces.
We can optimise the jaw bone positions and facial muscle actions before they finish growing and high school, giving them smile stability and confidence to step into the wider world with.
Age is no barrier
Adopt a better functional smile.
Unlike children, adults have usually stopped growing. However we can still improve the smile design and jaw function of most people.
The opportunity to improve facial structure relationships can:
improve jaw movements in chewing and speaking
reduce teeth grinding and wear, and
help prevent jaw joint problems arising
Of course straighter, bite aligned teeth will do wonders for your smile confidence in daily life!