Orthodontics is the dental specialty that is concerned with the study and treatment of malocclusions or improper bites, which may be the result of tooth irregularity, disproportionate jaw relationships or both. Treatment can focus on teeth displacement only or can deal with the control and modification of facial and jaw growth.
There are several different types of braces or correction appliances available. The most common type of braces are stainless steel or ceramic/porcelain attachments that are placed on either the front or the back side of the teeth and used as anchors to straighten and align the teeth. Self-ligating braces have replaced the need for rubber ties to hold the wire in places, instead having a latch or door on the bracket to open and close to fix the wire in place. The use of clear aligners is used when aesthetics are a concern.
Orthodontic treatments vary from case to case and can involve fixed braces, braces glued to the teeth, removable appliances or in some cases a combination of fixed braces and oral surgery, orthognathics, may be required to address more complicated malocclusions.