Some people hesitate to visit their orthodontist because they’re anxious about the overall treatment time. If you want a straighter, brighter smile, are you going to be stuck with braces for years?
Determining the length of your treatment is one of those things that’s hard to address in a blog post.
Every mouth is different, and the exact length of your orthodontic treatment will vary depending on your malocclusions, your goals, and how well you adhere to your orthodontist’s advice about home care and healthy habits.
Let’s talk about the general guidelines for length of treatment.
How Long Will I Have To Wear Braces?
Whether you choose braces or clear aligners like Invisalign, your orthodontic treatment is likely to last anywhere between 6 and 24 months. If your misalignments are less severe, your treatment will be shorter, while more complex malocclusions will need more time to correct. Once your braces are removed or you’ve finished with your aligners, you’ll be instructed to wear a retainer for around the same amount of time as your treatment.
Orthodontists recommend treatment options to straighten your teeth as quickly as possible without causing damage.
Braces and aligners work by moving the position of your teeth within your gums and jaw bone, so trying to do things too quickly can cause problems like bone loss and gum recession. Your orthodontist finds the balance between getting results as quickly as possible and leaving you with a healthy smile that lasts a lifetime.
Speed up your treatment by carefully following home care instructions and keeping all of your follow-up appointments. If your braces break because you ate crunchy food, you forget to wear your aligners, or you reschedule your appointments, your treatment will take longer.
Assuming you take scrupulous care of your braces during treatment, the only way to get a reliable estimate about your treatment time is to schedule an appointment with your orthodontist. You might be surprised at how quickly you can get results.
Braces and aligners take time to work correctly, but keep in mind that the results last a lifetime. The more severe the misalignments you want to correct, the longer treatment will take…but the results are also more worthwhile. Technologies today are far more advanced than they were 10 years ago, so there’s less pain with faster results.
If you have concerns about the appearance of metal brackets on your teeth, there are lots of discreet treatment options like Invisalign, lingual braces, and ceramic braces.
Talk to your orthodontist about the options that are available in your specific situation. You’ll be glad you did.