Do braces straighten teeth in one fell swoop? No. Braces move teeth in stages. Here are the braces stages for the Tip-Edge technique used by Dr. Ellenwood.
The first stage of braces is concerned with straightening the front teeth and opening the bite for more effective movement of teeth. Stage I lasts from four to eight months. Adjustment appointments arrive every six weeks and are 30 minutes in length. All adjustments of all stages are included in the Orthodontic Fee.
Just before Stage II, the premolars, or side teeth, are brought into alignment. This takes about one to three months depending on the severity of crowding in this area. Adjustment appointments in Pre-2 are about every six weeks, 30 minutes in length. If there is no Stage II, this stage is Pre 3 by default.
The second stage concentrates on closing any spaces behind the front teeth left after Stage I. In cases without extractions, this stage is usually not necessary. Stage II is about three to six months with adjustments every six weeks.
Stage III focuses on moving the roots of the teeth to their final positions for better stability and finished appearance. Until the third stage, the tops of the teeth have been tipping through the air; during Stage III, the roots must be moved through bone. This obviously requires more time, usually making Stage III as long to get out of as it was to get to, approximately six to twelve months. Adjustment appointments are around every eight weeks and about ten minutes long.
When braces are removed, retainers are worn nightly for at least one year actively and one night a week thereafter to prevent relapse. The initial set of retainers is included in the Orthodontic Fee. Don’t lose them or let the dog eat them. Replacement retainers can be expensive.
Your beautiful smile is a few stages away!
Orthodontics is the art and science of straightening teeth.
Why straight teeth?
For better function and easier cleaning? Yes.
For a more appealing smile and appearance? Definitely yes!
Whether you are considering orthodontics for your child or yourself, an improved smile is easily within your reach. Orthodontics can upright tilted teeth, bring together spaced teeth, pull in protruding teeth, and align crowded teeth. We would be happy to discuss your particular desires and concerns with you and determine if we can help you or if you would need the attentions of a specialist.
Adults, having discovered braces are not limited to children, are using orthodontic treatment get that smile they’ve always wanted. Don’t hesitate to ask us about what could be done for you!
And we’ve made it so easy to ask. Contact us to schedule a complimentary Orthodontic Opinion and explore the options and potentials for enhancing your smile with orthodontics.
Here are three appointments to get started toward your new smile:
The Orthodontic Opinion
At this appointment, Dr. Ellenwood will provide a general overview of possibilities. The Orthodontic Opinion is at no charge.
The Orthodontic Work-Up
The Orthodontic Work-Up includes an orthodontic examination, two x-rays (Panorex and Cephalometric), orthodontic photos, and impressions of both upper and lower teeth. The Panorex is an x-ray around the head; the Cephalometric is from the side of the head. These x-rays show the relation of the jaws to each other, to the teeth, and to the skull. The Work-Up will provide enough information to correctly diagnose and treatment plan your particular orthodontic problem.
The Orthodontic Consult
The Orthodontic Consult is two weeks after the Orthodontic Work-Up. At this appointment, Dr. Ellenwood will inform you of the results of analyzing your case, recommended treatment, and treatment objectives. If you are a teenager, your parent or guardian will need to attend, also.
This is a great time for answering any specific questions and exploring what in particular will be needed for your teeth. Our staff will review an Informed Consent to discuss any limitations or risks to treatment. The front office staff will help you with payment arrangements for your future braces. The Orthodontic Consult is included in the charge for the Work-Up.
Your beautiful smile is within reach!
The first thing is to remember you have braces. The teeth will remind you for the first week, but after that, you must keep yourself in check. Avoid sticky and hard foods as these will break the brackets, bend the wires, and loosen the bands.
2. Rubber Bands, Rubber Bands, Rubber Bands
Wear your elastics as instructed. The rubber bands coordinate the two arch wires and drive your orthodontic treatment forward. Get use to them now as teeth move very slowly without elastics. Four hours without elastics will set you back two days. The bone responds to steady, light force, but will ignore you if you’re not serious. Your estimated treatment time is based on the assumption of faithful elastic wear.
Keep your teeth sparkling clean, making sure to take time to use all your brushes. Look closely in the mirror for any plaque hiding between teeth or under brackets. Plaque will look like soggy white bread. Get it out of there! We don’t want to take you out of braces and then have to do a bunch of fillings. Decrease your sugar intake and use your special toothpaste to keep your teeth strong and gorgeous.
4. Hang in There
The first week in braces is tough. Teeth are sore, and lips and cheeks are irritated. Use the ortho wax provided over any rough brackets or bands. If a wire is poking you or if anything loosens, call us. Use Tylenol or ibuprofen as needed, though it has been shown that long-term use of ibuprofen or other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs will slow tooth movement down. By the second week in braces you’ll be feeling a lot better. Keep up your with the other three steps because you’ll eventually get to that great smile.