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Why Are There Different Phases to Orthodontic Treatment?

Posted on 3/7/2022 by Star Orthodontics
Why Are There Different Phases to Orthodontic Treatment?Orthodontic treatment can begin on patients as young as six or seven who still have baby teeth present, while other people never have any kind of orthodontic work done until well into their adulthood. Orthodontic treatment typically occurs over the course of six to thirty months, and is often divided into two to three stages. Here is an overview of the different phases of orthodontic treatment and why they are necessary.

Phase One

Phase one is the planning and early intervention stage of orthodontic treatment. This phase involves examining and evaluating any issues with the patient's teeth, mouth, and jaw in order to develop the appropriate treatment plan. Phase one often occurs when patients are between the ages of six and ten and still have some baby teeth present. It is beneficial to identify issues with bite, alignment, and spacing at an early age and intervene in order to prevent more serious complications when the patient is older. Phase one typically involves using retainers or other orthodontic appliances to prepare the patient's mouth and jaw for all the permanent teeth to erupt. This phase usually lasts nine to eighteen months.

Phase Two

Phase two is called the active stage of orthodontic treatment. This stage usually involves braces or other forms of aligners such as Invisalign, and sometimes incorporates other appliances like headgear, although this is becoming less common. Phase two of orthodontics tends to last between twelve to eighteen months overall.

Phase Three

Phase three is the retention phase, which may or may not be necessary depending on the patient. Phase three occurs after braces are removed, and it involves wearing a custom retainer to ensure that the teeth do not shift back to how they were before orthodontic intervention. The length of phase three varies greatly from one patient to another, and we give specific instructions for when and how long a patient should wear their custom retainer. To learn more about orthodontic treatment, give us a call today.

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