The time required to get your orthodontic treatment done is one of the most common concerns of the patient. To answer the question “How long does orthodontic treatment take?”, we should consider many relevant factors. After diagnosing and analyzing, the orthodontist will estimate the treatment time following the customized treatment plan.
Factors determining treatment time
- State of dental health
Oral health, especially the severity of teeth misalignment/ malocclusion, affects directly the duration of orthodontic treatment. If the patient has oral diseases, there is a must that the dental problems are treated before orthodontic treatment. Besides that, severe malocclusions can lengthen the duration of orthodontic treatment
- Orthodontic treatment plan
The treatment plan varies, depending on the severity and type of malocclusion and the educational background, technical skills, and practice management methods of the orthodontists. This difference impacts on the time of orthodontic treatment.
The best time to seek orthodontic treatment isn’t in adolescence or adulthood, but in childhood. When the jaw and teeth aren’t yet in fixed positions, the children can gain the best results in the shortest time. For adults, it will take more time and effort.
- Visit the orthodontist at the designated intervals
Delaying the appointment with your orthodontist lengthens the duration of time
- Diet and oral hygiene practice
Diet compliance and oral hygiene practice are two factors deciding the length of orthodontic treatment. Unbalanced diet with too much sugary food intake, combined with improper oral hygiene practice makes your teeth prone to tooth decay and gum disease. Sticky/crunchy food can damage the brackets and wires. The elasticity of the wires may move teeth in wrong direction if the wires are damaged.
Average time of orthodontic treatment
Although there are many relevant factors affecting the length of treatment, average duration of treatment lasts from 6 months to 3 years. Modern innovative devices helps easing the difficulties that patients may face during the treatment time. In addition, the development of new devices fastens the treatment time.
After braces removal, the patients should wear retainers few hours a day to maintain the teeth in right positions, preventing the teeth from shifting back to original places.