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FAQ:  Braces


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Question:
Reversing undesirable look from extractions and braces: I had 4 extractions (2 upper and 2 lower) plus braces for overbite and am very unhappy with facial appearance.

My braces have been off about a year and I don't wear my retainer in hopes the teeth will migrate back.

Is there any way to reverse this like opening the bite and pulling teeth forward? I wouldn't even mind having the spaces. I am looking for any alternatives.

I don't know why my orthodondist didn't explain this too me before extracting. ...Visitor from CA

Answer:
I am sorry to hear about your treatment outcome.

Extraction orthodontics is a controversial procedure and can, for some patients having anterior teeth extracted to make room... cause facial changes.

Removing molars to make room is a common recommendation and doesn't change the rest of the arch much. The original tooth structures are in place and provide the "common elements" we expect to see in a smile.

Patients who are born without inscisors (a common defect) sometimes use ortho treatments to close up the spaces. But, some of those patients too don't like the final outcome.

Dental implants are the usual treatment to reverse the effects and results of unsatisfactory orthodontic movement of teeth. The procedures take a little more time but can deliver cosmetic and functional outcomes that are very successful.

The best resources for investigating this further are reconstructive dentists who provide ortho treatments along with implant dentistry. They will typically have "all" of the technologies you can select from to get exactly what you want.

Implant periodontists who are involved with ortho treatments are also a good resource, although they will recommend the final restorative dentist to do the final restorative procedures.

From a structural standpoint, an implant periodontist might be good for peace of mind since they typically have a very keen eye on bone and soft tissue concerns and can suggest treatment options that make very good sense for cosmetic outcome and long term endurance.

Be sure to ask for lots of pictures of similar treatments. Avoid dentists who have no pictures.

Editorial Staff

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