Frequently asked questions
On orthodontics in general
Orthodontic braces, as is well-known, are used for teeth alignment. However, not only do teeth assume a correct position and become more pleasant to the eye, but they also become healthier because correct brushing is made easier. Furthermore, a regular bite eliminates possible functional problems such as joint pain and toothache, crooked teeth and, in extreme cases, tooth loss. By aligning the teeth, all other functions involving the teeth are indirectly improved (chewing, speech).
Of course, there is absolutely no age limit for orthodontic therapy if you want to have a perfect smile. We have to underline that here at Marelić orthodontic clinic we have a great number of adult patients and in all patients the treatment has been more than successful. Although it is a fact that in children who are at the peak of their physical development, maximum results can be achieved in short time, in adults, the quality cooperation with the orthodontist and better discipline during treatment bring equally successful results.
Our patients usually have to wear the braces for 9 months up to 2 years, but in most case for around a year and a half. The duration of the treatment depends on the complexity of the case, physical response and, at least in the final stage of the treatment, on the patient’s discipline.
Putting on the braces, or rather, the mere process of attaching the orthodontic braces (brackets) to the teeth, as well as changing of the arch wire are completely painless. However, after the application of the braces, for the first week or two, teeth can be over sensitive and painful due to the forces that are starting to act on the teeth and to align them, and the brackets may irritate the mucosal tissue of the cheeks and lips. This kind of discomfort is only temporary and to protect the mucosal tissue each patient is given a protective wax, which is applied to the brackets thus smoothing their surface and avoiding the irritation of the mucosal tissue.
All our patients get used to wearing the braces very quickly and the discomfort is completely eliminated.
During orthodontic treatment, a better oral hygiene than usual is required. After brushing the teeth with a soft toothbrush, it is necessary to check for any food deposits around the brackets and underneath the arch wire. For these areas small, interdental toothbrushes are particularly useful as they can clean all the areas difficult to reach. A quality oral hygiene during the orthodontic treatment period must not be neglected under any circumstances because teeth are moving within the jaw during this period.
ZPoor oral hygiene can lead to gum infection that can expand to the bone structures supporting the teeth. If the bone is infected, there can be no correct or healthy teeth alignment.
No. Attaching, wearing and taking off the braces do not damage the teeth. It is a common but incorrect opinion that orthodontic braces spoil teeth. During orthodontic treatment, the food deposits more easily on teeth and braces, and is more difficult to brush away. This is why it is necessary to maintain a correct and quality oral hygiene. Because of the fact that sometimes this important need is neglected, many blame the braces instead of poor oral hygiene and the consequences of not brushing the teeth regularly while wearing the braces can often be seen only after their removal.
When removing the braces, arch wires are detached from the brackets, the brackets are detached from the teeth and the glue that was holding the brackets to the teeth is removed. The glue is removed by polishing the teeth with different rubbers and abrasive discs which do not damage the enamel but on the contrary, have a positive cleaning and smoothing effect.
Types of treaments
Fixed orthodontic braces are made out of two main parts, the brackets (that are glued to the surface of the teeth) and the arch wire that connects the brackets. The wires that we use are made out of top quality Ni-Ti-Cu alloy and are extremely elastic. In practice this means that they enable a quick desired tooth shifting because the brackets are adapted to the arch wire form and pull the teeth.
There are many other elements of orthodontic treatment that your orthodontist can include in the therapy, depending on individual case and requirements at a given moment.
Of course, our studio offers “white” brackets treatment. However, this kind of brackets are not recommended to everyone. Standard brackets are made out of special kind of metal and “white” brackets are made out of a special kind of plastic material. The arch wire that goes through the brackets and causes teeth alignment is always metal. This is why the friction between the metal arch wire and the metal brackets is lower than in plastic brackets which, in short, means better and quicker tooth shifting in the desired position.
Furthermore, metal brackets are harder, stronger and are not elastic which again results in a better and quicker tooth alignment.
Yes, we use several types of brackets in orthodontic treatment. Standard brackets are connected together with arch wires or “ligatures” and self ligating brackets (Damon, Innovation) have a small door like opening. By closing this opening the arch wire is fixed within the brackets. The advantage of self ligating brackets is having to use less wires in the system which contributes to easier cleaning, better looks and above all guarantees mechanically more efficient tooth alignment. With Damon brackets With Damon brackets a great success is always achieved in more complex cases and without having to resort to tooth extrapolation. Also, the treatment period is shorter and more comfortable for the patient.
We should be aware that the success of a therapy depends on the knowledge and professionalism of the ortodontist, not on the ortodontic braces. Sophisticated braces will only help and speed up the procedure of the therapy and help an ortodontist to reach his goal with his client.
Post orthodontic treatment period (aftercare)
After removing the braces, which have aligned the teeth setting them in a new unnatural position, there is always a tendency of reassuming the old position. This is avoided by using retainers and a newly created bite that fix the teeth in the new position. However, there is always a small window for possible dental shifting where teeth are trying to assume a more natural and comfortable position, which causes the possibility of a 10 % tooth shifting during the retention period. This is usually unnoticeable.
Afterwards in life there is a possibility that teeth will move because of some external influences. Future is filled with unpredictable events, however, we are doing our best to direct the process in the best possible direction based on our projection.
Fees and methods of payment
The cost of an orthodontic treatment varies from case to case depending on the complexity of the problem, the duration of the treatment and the type of brackets used. The price range usually goes between 12.000 to 18.000 kunas depending on the complexity of the problem and each patient’s individual needs. Installment payment is possible and in the case of advanced cash payment, a 10 % discount is applied.
In order to be able to calculate the exact cost, individual case diagnosis is done for each patient. This includes dental impressions, intraoral photos, two x-rays and a detailed analysis. Also, after setting up a diagnostic plan, each patient is personally explained the problem, the solution, the duration of the treatments and the costs in a form of presentation. In this way, every patient is familiar with treatment duration, costs and payment solutions prior to the beginning of the treatment.
No, the total amount is divided in installments and at every check up you pay a part of the total amount, previously arranged during the consultation visit before the beginning of the treatment. It is important to underline that the cost of the treatment remains unvaried regardless of any possible extra check ups that might be needed.
Therefore, the cost is fix and covers a set of check ups, orthodontic braces and orthodontist’s skills and does not depend on a number of visits during the treatment.
Hello! I'm Martina Kauzlarić, I came to Doctor Marelić for the first time in June 2011 with a disastrous bite. (And by the way: before that I wore mobile braces for 9 years!!! After the termination of the therapy my teeth are completely rearranged) After attaching the braces, a year later, my teeth looked better than ever!!! And they still do today (in 2015). Greetings and recommendations,
We came by recommendation in Dr. Marelić’s practice. The recommendation proved to be excellent. One daughter had her teeth straightened in a year and we were super happy with the service and results. Now we are in therapy with the younger daughter, and it is enough of a reference. When we solve the children we’ll go further...
My experience with Marelić orthodontic clinic is very positive. The whole treatment, from attaching the braces up to the removal, lasted 13 months, and the result is outstanding, I can finally laugh relaxed, without covering the teeth with my hand. The whole team is very relaxed and positive, yet thorough and devoted to their work.