The benefits of two-phase treatment
Two-phase orthodontic treatment has several advantages, including:
- Creating a proper foundation: This method prepares your child’s mouth for further treatments. We make important adjustments while they’re young to promote healthy jaw development.
- Correcting various issues: Two-phase treatment addresses a patient’s entire mouth. It can make more room for teeth, address crowding, straighten a crossbite or overbite and more.
- Helping with future planning: Your orthodontist can assess your child’s teeth and predict the future treatments they may need.
The typical two-phase treatment process
This treatment consists of two action phases with a resting period in between. Each stage targets different areas to promote health in your child’s entire mouth.
The first portion of this two-phase treatment focuses on your child’s jaw. It’s critical to address the jawbone when your child’s mouth is still developing. The American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) recommends taking children to an AAO orthodontist at seven years old, which is when you can begin this treatment.
This phase ensures the patient has a healthy bite and enough room for permanent teeth to emerge. Orthodontists usually only recommend this treatment to fix moderate to severe orthodontic issues. Each case varies, but Phase One usually lasts from nine to 18 months.
Phase One treatment must happen when your child is young and their palate is still easy to move. There is often a gap between this phase and Phase Two to give the patient’s mouth a break and wait for their adult teeth to erupt.
Your orthodontist may use a retainer during the resting phase to keep your child’s teeth in place and prepare for the next stage. This period lasts until the patient’s adult teeth grow in, which could take several years.
Phase Two of this treatment uses braces to finish adjusting the patient’s teeth. It can address issues such as:
- Crooked teeth
- An overbite, crossbite or underbite
Some individuals only require Phase Two treatment for a healthy smile. While this stage is recommended for kids around 11 or 12, adults can also benefit from it. Every patient’s case differs, but Phase Two normally takes 12 to 20 months for the best results.
What if you delay treatment?
Delaying two-phase treatment for your child may worsen problems and create issues that require more time and money to fix. In severe cases, the patient may need surgery to achieve the results that two-phase treatment could have provided. Early two-phase treatment is an effective way to adjust your child’s teeth and jaw.