Orthodontic treatment can have life changing benefits. It improves one’s smile, increases self-esteem, and establishes a proper bite for a healthy dentition. Having straight teeth is not only esthetically pleasing but also integral to our overall heath. A proper bite promotes the longevity of our teeth, it helps us chew better, talk better, and have better access for proper brushing and flossing.
How Orthodontic Treatment Works
Orthodontic appliances can be made of metal, ceramic, or plastic. They may be removable or they may be bonded/glued to the teeth. By placing a constant, gentle force in a carefully controlled direction, braces slowly move teeth to a proper desired position. This is a great time to wear braces! Gone are the days when a metal band was placed around each tooth. You can choose brackets that are clear or metallic in color. You can choose the color of the ties that hold the wire in brackets. Wires are also less noticeable than they used to be, and the latest materials move teeth faster with less discomfort to patients.
Duration of Treatment
Treatment time can vary greatly. Typically it ranges from 6 months (for simple cases) to three years (for more advanced and difficult cases). Patients grow at different rates and will respond differently to orthodontic treatment, so the actual one will be in braces is only an estimate. The patient’s diligent use of any prescribed rubber bands or headgear is an important factor in achieving the most efficient treatment. Interceptive, or early treatment procedures, may take as little as six months