Orthodontic treatment is ideally started during different developmental stages. Two phase orthodontic treatment include addressing the alignment of the jaw and teeth.
Some dentists and orthodontists say that phase 1 treatment isn’t necessary. The fact is that the American Association of Orthodontists recommends that children have an orthodontic exam by the age of 7. An orthodontic evaluation at a young age can discover whether or not a child may be facing a potentially complicated problem down the road or, even more important, has an orthodontic condition that could benefit from an early correction.
Each of the orthodontic treatment phases has its own distinct goal.
Most orthodontic conditions are easier to correct if they’re diagnosed early on. Considered the planning stage, phase 1 treatment will help prevent severe issues in the future. Phase 1 treatment also gives the orthodontist more control over where the permanent teeth come in by addressing the structure of the child’s jaw and teeth while baby teeth still remain in the mouth. By the time a child is 7, the mouth has developed to the point that it has enough sound structure to determine the way it will develop as permanent teeth begin to emerge. An orthodontist also has the training that makes it possible for them to identify bite issues at an early age. Phase 1 treatment also helps avoid potentially more invasive dental treatments, including avoiding extraction.
The goal of phase 2 is to increase the chances of achieving a healthy, functional, beautiful smile. Phase two treatments typically include full braces when all of the permanent teeth have erupted, usually between the ages of 11 and 13. The braces move permanent teeth into the ideal position, creating optimal aesthetics and a healthy bite. It is during phase 2 that a new, beautiful smile appears. Phase two treatment usually last between 12 to 18 months.
A child’s growth and orthodontic treatment complement each together. By timing everything right during the dental development stages, an orthodontist can study your child’s oral growth and development and come up with a result driven treatment plan. As a matter of fact, amazing results can be achieved with the 2-phase treatment plan if it’s carried out at the appropriate time.
If you have any questions about phase 1 or phase 2 orthodontic treatments, or would like to schedule a complimentary consult for your child, contact our office today.