What is Orthodontics?


Dr. Tarek O. Zaki, D.D.S., an educated, trained and experienced orthodontist in Virginia Beach.

The word orthodontics comes from ortho , meaning “straight” and odont, meaning “tooth”. The specialty today is called Orthodontics and Dentofacial Orthopedics. This is because orthodontists also deal with the treatment and control of different aspects of facial growth and the development of the jaw. Orthodontists receive two or more years of education beyond college and four years in dental school. Dr. Tarek O. Zaki, D.D.S., received that additional education and training to be an orthodontist. He then completed the American Board of Orthodontics written exam and submitted clinical cases that were reviewed by professional peers. It is when such exams are passed that an orthodontist becomes Board Certified.

An orthodontist will use a variety of orthodontic appliances to assist patients with:

  • Making crooked teeth straightOrthodontics Treatments
  • Closing gaps between teeth
  • Aligning the tips of teeth
  • Improving speech or eating
  • Improving long-term health of teeth or gums
  • Preventing excessive wear and reducing the risk of trauma to teeth
  • Treating an improper bite
  • Protruding front teeth or buck teeth
  • Crowding of teeth
  • Teeth that are impacted
  • Asymmetrical dental arches
  • Deep Bite: Bottom front teeth hitting the roof of the mouth or the top front teeth scraping the gums in front of the lower front teeth
  • Open bite, Underbite and Crossbite
  • Cosmetic reasons

Call Zaki Orthodontics and schedule your free consultation. (757) 416-1100.

What are orthodontic treatments and how do they work?

Both fixed and removable appliances are used to move teeth, retrain muscles and affect the positioning of the jaw. Gentle pressure is applied on the teeth and jaws by the appliances. Dr. Zaki will determine which appliance and treatment will work best depending on the extent of your problem. Dr. Zaki is an experienced orthodontist who stays up to date on the latest treatments and appliances. Fixed appliances are most common in orthodontic treatments and are used when accuracy is vital.

Typical fixed appliances include:

  • Braces – consist of wires, bands and brackets and include both metal and ceramic braces. Treatment may last several months to years and they are adjusted every six weeks on average.
  • Fixed space maintainers – used when a child loses a primary tooth to stop the teeth on either side from closing in until the adult tooth comes in.
  • Special fixed appliances, called habit-breakers, may be used to prevent thumb sucking or tongue thrusting.

Removable appliances can correct slightly crooked teeth or prevent thumb sucking. Typical removable appliances include:

  • Aligners – an option to traditional braces and includes Invisalign®.
  • Headgear – slows down upper jaw growth and keeps the back teeth in position while pulling back the front ones.
  • Lip and cheek bumpers relieve the pressure from cheeks or lips on the teeth.
  • Palatal expander – makes the arch of the upper jaw wider.
  • Removable retainers – used to prevent thumb sucking and to stop teeth from moving back to original positions.
  • Removable space maintainers – fixed space maintainer alternative.
  • Splints – used for TMJ (temporomandibular joint ) disorder to help the jaw close properly and lessen the problems that result from grinding teeth while sleeping (nocturnal bruxism) .

Dr. Zaki helps patients of all ages by creating a healthier mouth, improved facial and teeth appearance even as you become a senior adult.

Call Zaki Orthodontics and schedule your free consultation. (757) 416-1100.

Do I need orthodontics?What is Orthodontics

The answer depends on your unique condition. Dr. Zaki will examine you to determine your condition and make a recommendation for treatment. Even if you don’t have a medical reason for braces, you may want to improve your smile. Many adults these days are choosing orthodontic treatment. You are never too old to have a beautiful smile!

For children, treatment might be necessary as young as the age of 4 to fix a growth pattern caused by habits such as thumb or tongue sucking. Around the age of 7 or 8, a child may need orthodontic treatment to correct a bad bite. Most treatment for children usually starts once the adult teeth are in and fully erupted, around 12 – 13 years old.

Dr. Zaki will do the following to determine if you need orthodontic treatment:

  • A full medical and dental health history
  • An exam of your mouth and face
  • Special Xrays

After reviewing the results, Dr. Zaki can determine if you need orthodontics and will discuss different treatment plans for you to consider / that may help you most . Oral hygiene must be excellent before orthodontic treatment begins for all patients. Dr. Zaki of Zaki Orthodontics in Virginia Beach treats children, adolescents and adults to help them achieve healthy, beautiful smiles.

Need a 2nd opinion? Call Zaki Orthodontics and schedule your free consultation. (757) 416-1100.


Zaki Orthodontics in Virginia Beach Virginia is the practice of Dr. Tarek O. Zaki, D.D.S. He is an experienced orthodontist providing braces, Invisalign® and other orthodontic services to Virginia Beach and the surrounding cities in Hampton Roads, including Norfolk, Chesapeake, Suffolk and Portsmouth Virginia. Dr. Zaki offers free, comprehensive, 2nd opinion examinations. For a full list of Zaki Orthodontics’ treatments and services click here. To learn more about Dr. Zaki click here. Call now for a consultation. (757) 416-1100

Sources: medicalnewstoday.com, colgate.com