Two-Phase Orthodontic Treatment
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The two-phase orthodontic treatment combines both straightening and physical, facial change. This combination makes achieving ideal results for function, health, and aesthetics possible. Often, children show early signs of jaw issues as they develop. If these signs are recognized, they could be candidates for early orthodontic treatment.
Early treatment can be very beneficial and prevent the need for more extensive dental work or surgery later in life. When starting treatment, orthodontic records will be taken of your child to determine if early care is needed.
The first phase of treatment is initiated to:
- Prevent a problem from developing (preventive treatment)
- Intercept a developing problem (interceptive treatment)
- Guide the growth of the jaw bones that support the teeth (growth modification)
The treatment will be timed to predictable stages of dental development to provide the greatest potential for improvement and correction of your child’s malocclusion (bad bite).
The first phase of treatment benefits patients physically, enabling them to bite or chew more effectively. It may reduce the risk of breaking front teeth that protrude. And for many patients, there is an improvement in self-esteem.
Younger patients may be more cooperative and follow the orthodontist’s instructions on appliance wear and oral hygiene. And the desired changes that result from a first phase treatment may contribute to long-term stability, meaning that teeth stay where the orthodontist has moved them.
The second phase of treatment moves permanent teeth into their final positions, usually with the aid of braces and retainers. The main objective of the second phase is to make sure all teeth are correctly positioned to function optimally with other parts of the mouth.
Additionally, there are other goals of the two-phase treatment, including the following:
- A proper relationship of teeth and jaws, so that they work correctly
- Correct alignment of the teeth, for a beautiful smile,
- Positioning of the teeth and jaws for an attractive face and profile
This phase usually involves full upper and lower braces. At this time, all secondary teeth have erupted, and typically require braces from an average of 24 months. After this period, retainers are worn.
Ask us about two-phase orthodontic treatment for your child. Contact Walla Walla Dental Care at 509-525-4833.