Your Primer on Accelerated Orthodontics
Time is at a premium these days and no one has time to commit to years of wearing braces. That is why the idea of accelerated orthodontics has become such an attractive option. It is not for every orthodontic patient however.
Here is your primer on accelerated orthodontics.
What Exactly is Accelerated Orthodontics?
Accelerated Orthodontics is a treatment to your dental bones that accelerates the movement of your teeth, shortening the amount of time you have to wear braces.
Types of Accelerated Orthodontics
Currently there are three types of accelerated orthodontics treatment:
- Surgery: Minor surgery where the dental bone is perforated and then bone grafts added helps better shape and move your teeth. After the surgery, you still have to wear braces, but it will be for a shorter period of time.
- Propel System: The PROPEL® System is a micro-invasive procedure performed by your orthodontist in the office to greatly reduce the time in which teeth are moved. Through a ground-breaking scientifically proven, patented process called Micro-osteoperforation™, the bones supporting the teeth are stimulated to induce an inflammatory response that greatly accelerates tooth movement in the treated area. When used during active treatment, your treatment time could be cut almost in half.
- Acceledent: AcceleDent is a FDA-cleared medical device that you use in your home in addition to your braces and aligners to stimulate the bone remodeling needed to reposition your teeth. You use it just 20 minutes a day to start seeing results. The key to the success of AcceleDent is its SoftPulse Technology which facilities the tooth movement process by applying consistent gentle pressure to the teeth via micropulses. This light force will cause the teeth move faster, accelerating the bone remodeling process.
- Invisalign is another orthodontic treatment that can accelerate the treatment process. On average, most orthodontists believe that teenagers will need Invisalign for about a year, while adults may need it for up to two years. There is no perfect formula for determining how long a patient will need treatment, as every patient has their own unique tooth alignment that will be a factor.
How Much Time Can Be Shaved Off?
While how much time shaved off varies a little depending on your particular alignment issue and which type of accelerated treatment you choose, in general you can cut your treatment in almost half. When you are facing almost three years in braces, that is really good news, right?
Who Is a Good Candidate for This?
Any orthodontic patient who needs a lot of work done to straighten their teeth or who have jaw issues are the best candidates. If you have a simple alignment issue, accelerated treatment isn’t really necessary.
Does It Matter If You Are Wearing Braces or Aligners?
Another good thing about accelerated orthodontics is that it works well with all types of braces no matter if you chose metal, ceramic Invisalign or even lingual braces.
Are There Any Drawbacks to Choosing Accelerated Orthodontics?
Accelerated orthodontics is a new field, so there is not as much research or evidence that shows how it affects the results of your orthodontic treatment over time—though no adverse effects are predicted as long as all instructions for treatment are followed correctly.
Because your teeth will shift quickly, you will require more frequent adjustments. In just a few months you may need to visit the orthodontist as many times as you would in a two- to three-year span with traditional treatment.
Also keep in mind that most insurance companies will not pay for accelerated orthodontics, so you likely will have to front the cost.
To ensure you are making the best decision for your individual situation, sit down with your orthodontist and discuss all the pros and cons of all the different types of accelerated orthodontic treatments. It is a big investment so you will want to have all the facts before making a final decision.
Whatever you do, don’t try to move your teeth on your own because risk putting too much pressure on your teeth weakening them and moving them in the wrong directions. Ask your orthodontist also about more natural ways you can accelerate the treatment process. You will be surprised by how simply following all your orthodontist’s instructions and taking proper care of your teeth while wearing braces or aligners can really speed the process up.
When your braces are first put on, your orthodontist gives you a laundry lists of do’s and don’ts and tips for caring for your braces and your teeth during treatment. These instructions are very important to follow because if you do not, you risk delaying your treatment. Eating food that can damage your braces, not cleaning your teeth properly and missing orthodontist appointments all can slow down the teeth straightening process.
Your teeth are put under a lot of pressure during the straightening process as it is, so it is important that you avoid any bad habits that cause any undue pressure like biting down hard on your teeth and grinding them. Some people have a nervous habit of doing this and it causes extra wear and tear on your teeth. If you notice that you do this, try relaxing your jaw when you feel it tightening up. If it happens a lot when you are sleeping, talk to your orthodontist about ways to prevent it.
Also, if your orthodontist suggests wearing a retainer once your braces are removed don’t ignore him. Retainers help keep your teeth in the new position so if you don’t wear them as often as you are told to, you risk undoing all the good work the braces did.
While time is money these days, some things like a healthy, beautiful smile is worth the wait. While accelerated treatments are not bad, they are not right for every person, every situation so make sure you do your research first. For more information about accelerated orthodontic treatment, contact us at Orthodontics Limited today. We are dedicated to helping you get the beautiful, healthy smile you deserve.