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Q WHAT IS ORTHODONTICS?

A It is a specialist treatment for patients who want to improve their smile or bite, or both. This is often done using fixed braces consisting of brackets and wires or plastic aligners which move the teeth into new positions.

Q WHAT TYPES OF BRACES ARE THERE?

A There are fixed and removable braces, metal and tooth coloured braces. Some fit on the outside of your teeth, while other more invisible lingual braces fit on the inside or tongue-side of your teeth.

Q WHAT DOES ORTHODONTIC TREATMENT COST?

A If you are under 18 and you qualify for treatment on the NHS, the treatment is free. The cost of private orthodontic treatment depends upon what you want and need, but the initial consultation costs 85.00

Q HOW LONG DOES TREATMENT TAKE?

A An average course of treatment takes 18-24 months with fixed braces, followed by the wear of retainers. Simple problems can often be corrected more rapidly.

Q HOW OFTEN ARE APPOINTMENTS?

A Fixed braces are usually adjusted every 6-10 weeks.

Q WHAT IS IT LIKE TO WEAR BRACES?

A Having a brace fitted is a painless procedure. Your teeth are likely to ache for 2-3 days after the fitting. Normal painkillers will help and you may prefer to eat soft foods for a few days.

Q WILL TREATMENT AFFECT MY SPEECH?

A It is likely that your speech will be affected for the first few days. Lingual braces can take longer to adapt to. For most people speech is normal after around 3-4 days. If you have a removable brace or aligner, you must keep it in to speak, otherwise your speech will not adapt.

Q I PLAY A WOODWIND / BRASS INSTRUMENT. WILL I STILL BE ABLE TO PLAY?

A Musicians find the effect on instrument playing varies, but at the start you may find you need to practice to learn to adapt to the change in your embouchure. You can obtain more information from the website www. britishorthodonticsociety.com

Q WHAT HAPPENS AT THE END OF TREATMENT?

A Once the fixed braces are removed, removable retainers are made. These should be worn every night for about 18 months. Generally indefinite, occasional retainer wear is advised to maintain the final result. Private patients can choose to have fixed retainers to maintain their new smile for life.