What Can You Expect from an Orthodontist?

Posted on: 23 March 2021

An orthodontist is a dentist who specialises in treating crooked, misaligned, overcrowded and overlapping teeth.

Crooked Teeth

These are teeth that have rotated, facing either left or right. They can alter your appearance, especially if they are the front teeth, making you shy from smiling. Since a smile is essential in socialising, you might need an orthodontist's help to straighten your teeth.

Misaligned Teeth

Misaligned teeth present differently. You can either have a crossbite, overbite or underbite.

  • Crossbites occur when your teeth slant towards the interior of your mouth. 
  • Overbites occur when your upper teeth appear more in front than your lower teeth. 
  • Underbites are the opposite of overbites. They occur when your lower teeth appear more in front than your upper teeth.

The Orthodontist

Reading through the teeth conditions highlighted above, you can quickly tell which situation you fall under and know that you need to visit an orthodontist.

When in the orthodontist clinic, expect the orthodontist to inspect your teeth first, then ask you various questions to understand your general health.

The orthodontist then discusses various dental treatment options, such as braces, dental headgear and retainers.


There are different kinds of braces, but the most common are traditional metal braces. These types of braces are made from metal and treat most crooked and misaligned teeth conditions. However, it is not uncommon to come across patients who do not like the appearance of traditional metal braces or the taste of metal. If this is the case, the orthodontist may recommend other braces.

For example, if you only mind the appearance, the orthodontist may recommend lingual, porcelain/ceramic braces and, if your condition allows, clear aligners. If you mind both the taste of metal and the appearance, the orthodontist may recommend porcelain/ceramic braces or clear aligners.


This is more like a preventative solution. After the orthodontist removes your braces, retainers are used to prevent your teeth from sliding back into the position they were before treatment. Your dentist will inform you how long you need to wear them.

Dental Headgear

These are mostly recommended for children to correct crowded and overlapping teeth. Since their jaws are still developing, it is easy to create space on the gum.

It is not uncommon to find an adult wearing dental headgear. For adults, dental headgear is used after tooth extraction to prevent other teeth from shifting and filling a gap.

For more information, contact an orthodontic clinic.