Do you dream of having a perfect smile? Braces can make that dream come true! They are an effective way to straighten teeth and give you a beautiful smile. But when getting your braces, you might wonder how long it takes to get that perfect smile.
The time spent on treatment will vary depending on the patient because every smile responds differently to treatment. Treatment times can take anywhere from six to 30 months, but most treatments take about 22 months.
During this time, your orthodontist will carefully adjust your braces to move your teeth into their desired position. It might seem like a long time, but the end result is worth the wait! You’ll have the confident, straight smile you’ve always wanted.
How Braces Work
Braces gently guide the movement of teeth by applying pressure over an extended period. First, you will receive your initial consultation. You’ll have the opportunity to meet Dr. Erickson and the rest of the team, learn more about orthodontics, receive a complete exam, and find out which treatment options will best meet your needs.
Then, they’ll put the braces on, and you’ll have regular follow-up appointments to monitor progress and make necessary adjustments. Your orthodontist may tighten or replace wires to ensure your teeth move in the right direction. It takes patience and commitment, but it’s all part of the journey to that perfect smile.
Several factors can affect how long treatment lasts:
Complexity: Treatment may be relatively shorter if you have minor crowding or spacing. But it might take longer to get optimal results if you have more complex issues like severe crowding or a significant overbite or underbite.
Age: Children and teenagers often respond faster to treatment because their bones are still growing, making it easier to guide teeth into place. Adults might need more time, but advancements in orthodontic technology can speed up the process.
Oral hygiene habits: Good oral hygiene is vital during braces treatment. If you don’t brush and floss properly, plaque and food particles can build up around the braces, causing tooth decay and gum disease. Following your orthodontist’s instructions and regularly visiting your dentist are essential.
Your body’s response to treatment: Everyone’s body is different. Some people’s teeth move faster than others. Genetics, bone density, and overall health can influence how long it takes for your teeth to adjust.
There are different types of braces available:
Our blog, The Different Types of Treatment Options, covers all options available to you at Orthodontic Specialists at our office in St. George, Utah. To give you an overview, here are the options we provide:
Traditional metal braces: They’re the most common and effective type. They consist of metal brackets and wires. The treatment duration with metal braces is usually the shortest compared to other types.
Ceramic braces: These braces are similar to metal braces, but the brackets are tooth-colored, making them less noticeable. The treatment duration is similar to metal braces but requires more attention to oral hygiene.
Clear Aligners: Clear aligners are a series of invisible, removable, and comfortable acrylic trays that straighten your teeth like braces. The aligners are invisible and removable, so you can eat and drink what you want while in treatment. Plus, brushing and flossing are less of a hassle. The aligners are comfortable and have no metal to cause mouth abrasions during treatment.
Follow these tips to make your journey faster and more effective.
- Maintain good oral hygiene: Brush after every meal, floss daily, and use mouthwash to keep your teeth and braces clean.
- Follow your orthodontist’s instructions: Wear any additional appliances they give you, like rubber bands or retainers.
- Watch what you eat: Avoid hard candies and sticky treats that can damage your braces.
- Keep all appointments: Regular check-ups are essential to keep track of your progress.
Once your braces come off, it’s not the end yet. You’ll need to wear retainers to maintain your perfect smile. It’s essential to follow your orthodontist’s advice during this retention phase. A retainer helps to keep the teeth aligned and ensure the best lasting results for the appearance of your smile.
The average timeline for braces treatment is one to two and a half years, but that is just an estimate. Dr. Erickson will give you a more accurate timeline based on your case. During treatment, you’ll have regular visits with the doctor every six to eight weeks for adjustments. Attending these appointments is essential because missing them can extend treatment time.
So, be patient, take good care of your teeth, and follow Dr. Erickson’s guidance. Getting the perfect smile might take some time, but it’ll be worth it in the end! Keep smiling, and soon you’ll have the confident, straight smile you’ve always desired.
Your Friendly Team at
St. George, Utah