You’ve got your braces on and started your orthodontic journey to a better smile. Congratulations! Now there’s one more question: How long do I keep them on? There’s a lot of excitement leading to the day you get your smile, and every patient has a unique treatment experience. There are a few things to keep in mind when planning how long you’ll be wearing your braces. At Clauss Orthodontics, we want to help you plan your smile journey every step of the way so the results you get are the results you want. Let’s look at a few factors that could lengthen or shorten your braces treatment.
What are you being treated for?
Each of our patients is different, but there is a general rule of thumb we can count on for most of them: If you have a complex case that requires more extensive care, your treatment time will likely be longer than someone who has a healthier bite with only moderate issues. Significant bite problems or severely displaced teeth take longer to correct than simple spacing or crowding issues. The more work that’s needed, the more time it will take for the treatment to finish.
How does your body respond to the treatment?
Every patient responds to treatment in different ways depending on several factors. Even patients with similar cases will rarely have the same response to the same treatment. Gum tissue thickness, bone density, and chewing patterns vary between people, and oral habits such as clenching or grinding the teeth can affect treatment. That’s why it’s important to have an orthodontist who knows your unique needs. Dr. Clauss takes a personalized approach to every patient that visits our office. He’ll build you a custom treatment plan based on your goals and needs for optimal results.
Are you compliant with your treatment?
You and your orthodontist should work together as a team during your treatment process. Dr. Clauss will put on your braces and plan the tooth movements associated with clear aligners. However, you’re just as important to the process! How compliant you are with treatment guidelines can determine how long your treatment is.
A good tip for successful treatment compliance is maintaining a rigorous oral hygiene routine. Your braces can’t improve your teeth if you are not keeping them healthy and clean. Neglecting to take care of your teeth and gum can slow your treatment down. Orthodontic treatment may be paused if dental work needs to be done. If you maintain strong oral health habits and follow the instructions of your orthodontist, you can avoid extending the length of your treatment time.
Another essential step of the process is meeting with our orthodontic team. Dr. Clauss will assess the movement of your teeth and make sure everything is going according to plan. If you need to cancel or reschedule an appointment, let us know and we can adjust to your busy schedule! If you want to keep your treatment fast and on track, try to stick to the schedule as close as possible and make up for any missed appointments later.
Braces and aligners are important for creating your best smile. However, they’re also susceptible to damage. Any breaks, cracks, or snaps in your braces require fixing, and this can push your treatment schedule back. If you’re wearing braces, it’s best to avoid any crunchy or sticky foods. These can weaken the bond strength of brackets or snap wires. A broken or loosened bracket is not considered an emergency, and may not need immediate attention. Ideally, we want to rebond it as soon as possible. When a bracket isn’t properly bonded to your teeth, no active tooth movement occurs. This can add time to the treatment process, so be sure to contact our office if you experience any damage to your appliance.
How old are you?
How old you are can play a role in the length of your treatment. Patients can successfully move their teeth at any age, but children and teens can move their teeth more easily. This is because their bones are more pliable since they’re not fully developed. It allows for Dr. Clauss to have more control over your bite correction. For older patients, however, treatment can take longer with more developed teeth. The jawbone stops growing by our early twenties. Treating orthodontic issues after that point may require more time and effort.
Our office offers a variety of treatments to move your teeth comfortably, efficiently, and as quickly as possible. While there will not be an exact end date for your treatment, the average time in braces tends to be anywhere from twelve to thirty-six months. Treatment with a clear aligner system like Invisalign can be shorter.
Many factors can lengthen or shorten your treatment time, and not just the ones we’ve discussed above. No matter how long your treatment takes, we can promise one thing: Our team of orthodontic experts will be there the whole time so when your treatment is removed, you’ll love what you see in the mirror!
Trust the experts at Clauss Orthodontics
A smile like yours deserves the right team to get it just right. If you or someone you love is considering orthodontic treatment, we want to provide the proper information and treatment to help you along. Our experienced team at Clauss Orthodontics in Watertown and Middlebury knows that an informed patient is more likely to participate in their treatment. If you have any more questions or wonder if you may be a good fit for braces treatment, get in touch today to schedule your FREE consultation with Dr. Clauss to start your smile journey.