What Are The Stages of Orthodontic Treatment?

What Are The Stages of Orthodontic Treatment?

May 01, 2022

Crooked or misaligned teeth can negatively impact your appearance and self-confidence. More importantly, they can encourage plaque and bacteria buildup in the mouth, increasing your risk of cavities and gum disease.

Orthodontic treatments are a great way to straighten crooked teeth and improve the appearance and function of your mouth. The treatment can also help maintain the long-term health of your teeth, jaw joints, and gums.

Mainly, orthodontic treatments aim to correct numerous imperfections such as:

  • Closing improper teeth gaps
  • Aligning the tips of your teeth
  • Correcting an improper bite
  • Straightening crooked teeth
  • Boosting the long-term health of your teeth and gums
  • Correcting overbites, underbites, and crossbite
  • Correcting overcrowding
  • Improving chewing and speech abilities

What is Meant by Orthodontic Phases?

Orthodontic phases are the number of phases your treatment will take. On average, orthodontic treatments take about 6-12 months to complete. Depending on the severity of your condition, type of dental devices, and the patient’s perseverance, orthodontic treatments can occur in several phases.

The Different Phases of Orthodontic Treatment

The various stages in orthodontic treatments include:

Stage 1 – The Planning Stage

As the name suggests, the planning phase involves learning about your condition to make an exact diagnosis to align your teeth. It includes:

  • Medical and dental evaluations – Your orthodontist will ask about your medical conditions, allergies, and medications. This evaluation ensures that existing dental and medical issues are under control before the treatment begins. In some cases, oral problems can affect medical complications.
  • Study model or bite Impressions – Your orthodontist might ask you to bite down into a mouthguard-like tray filled with a gel that hardens around the teeth. It helps to create models of your teeth.
  • Panoramic X-rays – Your orthodontist needs x-rays scans to view your teeth and underlying structures such as roots and jawbone joints.
  • Computer-generated images – Your orthodontist also need digital photos of your mouth to make a customized plan. These images also help determine how specific treatments affect your face’s shape and jaw’s symmetry.
  • Photographs – Your orthodontist may suggest taking pictures before, during, and after the treatment to assess the progress and impact of your treatment.

Stage 2 – Active Stage

The initial stage focuses on diagnosing your condition and developing a customized treatment. In the second stage, the orthodontist will recommend customized orthodontic devices to help move the teeth to the desired position. The device may be removable or fixed depending on your condition and preferences.

If you don’t like fixed orthodontic devices such as traditional braces, you can use removable devices such as clear aligners, facemask, and headgear. These devices should be worn for a few hours daily over the entire phase of the treatment.

Whatever orthodontic device you use will need to be adjusted or changed regularly to ensure the adequate and continual movement of the teeth. If your device gets damaged during treatment, notify your dentist immediately for a replacement.

Stage 3 – Retention Stage

Once you’ve finished the treatment and your teeth are correctly aligned, you will no longer have alignment devices. You will have to wear a retainer to ensure that the teeth do not shift back to their original positions.

Aligners must only be worn for a few hours daily over a specified period. The jawbone will gradually reform around the newly aligned teeth and stabilize them in the correct alignment.

Benefits of getting Orthodontic Treatment at Sunny Smiles

There are numerous benefits of getting your orthodontic treatments with us. These include:

  • They improve your oral health: Straighter teeth are easy to clean, protecting your future oral health from issues such as gum disease and cavities.
  • They improve your appearance: Straighter teeth make you look more beautiful, attractive, and youthful.
  • They treat jaw problems: Correct teeth and jaw alignments can help treat and prevent jaw issues such as pain, poor bite, and TMJ problems.
  • They improve oral function: Crooked teeth or improper teeth gaps can make biting and chewing harder. You should avoid certain foods which can cause malnutrition. Straightening crooked teeth and closing teeth gaps will restore your bite function for better feeding.
  • They improve your self-confidence: Orthodontic treatments enhance your teeth’ appearance, positively impacting your self-confidence and overall wellness.

Schedule an Appointment Today

Do you or your kid need orthodontic treatments? Contact a kid’s dentist near you or Sunny Smiles Kids Pediatric Dentistry and Orthodontics for more information.