Friday, January 20, 2012

Orthodontic-Related Periodontal Therapy: A Combining of Forces by Meredi Wagner-Hoehn

The Dallas Cowboys of the 1990s. The San Antonio Spurs over the past 10 years. Great Texas teams produce great teamwork and results. And in the realm of dentistry, it’s no different. The combination of orthodontics with periodontics is a formula guaranteed to produce a winning smile.

If you’re pursuing orthodontic treatment to improve the functionality and aesthetics of your teeth and smile, your local orthodontist may call upon an Austin periodontist for certain procedures to be performed. This assistance ties together both practices with one common goal in mind: an upgraded grin. By lending a helpful hand, the periodontist can effectively reduce your orthodontic treatment time – in other words, get those braces off your teeth sooner rather than later – and improve your mouth’s long-term health. Sounds like a win-win, doesn’t it?

Have an Impacted Tooth?

A common situation which incorporates a periodontal backing of an orthodontic process is seen in impacted teeth. A single impacted tooth can have adverse effects on your mouth’s health. In addition to causing growth and alignment issues for the nearby teeth, an impacted tooth leaves a gap which needs filling and could damage the roots of adjacent teeth. For the sake of your oral well-being, it’s in your best interest to have an orthodontist and periodontist share the duty of addressing this situation. Your periodontist will take the reins for the uncovering procedure, which locates the affected tooth, removes the barriers preventing its natural eruption and achieves the correct positioning via braces.

Need a Frenectomy?

A second scenario which incorporates an orthodontist-periodontist tag team involves a frenum – a fold of tissue attached to your lip or underneath your tongue. Although it serves no true function, the frenum can be blamed for several oral issues. For example, if it grows between your upper front teeth, it often creates a space known as a diastema. Your orthodontist can correct and close the diastema, but the frenum attachment frequently allows for the space to reappear. This is when your area periodontist steps in to save the day – and your smile. Not to mention, speech impediments often accompany an overly strong attachment between the frenum and tongue. To avoid these problems and keep your mouth’s health on track, discuss your frenectomy options with your Austin oral professionals.

Want Longer Teeth?

A periodontist may also be called into action if you wear braces and certain teeth aren’t long enough for the treatment to take full effect. Crown lengthening, which adjusts the gum line of shorter teeth, exposes more of the natural crown of each tooth and provides more area for brackets to be correctly placed. Moreover, your cleaning and maintenance processes will be simpler, and the overall stability and functionality of the braces will improve.

Time for Realignment?

The pulling and pushing forces which envelope orthodontics and gradually move your teeth into correct, aligned positions can be tweaked and improved by periodontal practices. Your periodontist may suggest microimplants to ensure your teeth’s positions benefit you to the best of their ability. Consisting of small titanium screws placed into your gums, the implants improve the mobility of those stubborn, “I’m not moving for anyone!” teeth.

Orthodontists and periodontists often work together to give patients the best results. Dr. Williamson frequently offers his expertise when orthodontics reaches its limits. Call his Austin periodontal office today to speak with his friendly and knowledgeable team about your periodontal options.