Today the overall success rate of orthodontic treatment is very high. Regardless of how bad a malocclusion or bad bite might be, there is likely an orthodontic treatment that can help. Typically speaking, this type of treatment will take place in either two or three well-defined phases. Enjoying straighter teeth and a more pleasant smile is one of the easiest ways to increase self-esteem and self-confidence. With properly aligned teeth, you experience better chewing, biting, speaking and overall functioning of the jaw. Everything from an overbite to an underbite as well as a cross bite and overcrowding can be addressed through orthodontic treatment.
Treatment Phases of Orthodontic Care
Generally speaking, a full orthodontic treatment should be expected to take anywhere between six months and as long as in some extreme cases 36 months to complete. Treatment is mostly determined by the severity of the malocclusion. It is also determined by the dental devices that will be used as well as the dedication of the patient receiving the treatment. Phase one of this type of treatment is known as the planning stage. This is where the orthodontists will diagnose the patient and come up with an effective plan to proceed. This phase also includes a series of dental and medical evaluations. The main objective here is to determine if any prior medical or dental complications could be a problem.
Pre-Existing Damage to Teeth
Next, the dentist will take a series of castings or dental impressions. The resulting castings will be analyzed and reviewed in order to determine how best to proceed. In addition, panoramic x-rays are used to look for pre-existing damage to teeth and the jawbone as well as jaw joints. X-rays offer a detailed insight into the exact positioning of every tooth as well as the associated root. Other important aspects of phase one include computer-generated images and multiple photographs. The next phase is phase two and is considered the active phase. During this stage of treatment, all of the prior diagnostic data is put together to create a customized treatment for the patient. Custom orthodontic devices will be discussed where choices can then be made.
Multiple Visits to Your Orthodontist
From fixed braces to removable devices as well as invisible braces and headgear, they are all options. Expect these devices, whatever are chosen, to be regularly adjusted to allow for adequate and steady pressure to be applied to the teeth. Multiple visits to your orthodontist should be expected during this phase. In the final phase or phase three, also known as the retention phase is where the teeth have been successfully aligned in the correct position. The patient will receive a custom retainer so that the teeth do not shift back to their old position. Retainers must be warm consistently to ensure success. To learn more about the phases of orthodontic treatment contact your dentist in Walnut Creek, Dr. Massood Darvishzadeh at Walnut Creek Dental today.