Upon completion of dental school, some graduates choose to pursue a dental specialty, which requires additional schooling during a two- to three-year residency program. There are nine specialties sanctioned by the Canadin Dental Association; one of the nine specialties is "Orthodontics and Dentofacial Orthopedics."
The objective of contemporary orthodontics is a well-proportioned face, as well as an esthetic and stable dentition. While orthodontics entails the management of tooth movement, dentofacial orthopedics involves the guidance of facial growth and development, which occurs largely during childhood. In both cases, appliances are frequently used – the more familiar braces for orthodontics, and other specialized appliances like headgear and expanders depending on what facial abnormalities are present. Sometimes orthopedic treatment may precede conventional braces, but often the two are accomplished at the same time. So if your child gets braces and headgear, he's undergoing orthodontics and dentofacial orthopedics! It is through facial orthopedics that the orthodontist is able to achieve a treatment result with jaws in proportion to each other and to the rest of the face.
At ClearView Orthodontics, we are able to diagnose misalignments in the teeth as well as the facial structure, and can devise a treatment plan that integrates both orthodontic and dentofacial orthopedic treatments.