The most common age for full orthodontic treatment to be started ranges from 11-13 years of age depending upon the type of bad bite, the amount of growth taking place and whether all, or nearly all, the primary teeth have fallen out.
For most types of bad bites the best time to start treatment is around the early teen years. If needed, the position of the jaws also can be modified to a certain degree in a fairly simple way with growth modifying orthodontic plates (orthopaedic appliances) while the patients are still growing rapidly.
Full braces treatment (on its own or in combination with plates) usually takes anywhere from 12 to 24 months, depending upon the specific issues. Treatment with braces on some of the teeth only (braces in one arch only and part braces) in select cases may take as little as 6 to 12 months but the results are less predictable than full braces because only the teeth in the braces can be controlled to any great degree.
The universal orthodontic appliance is “braces” and they are usually fitted to all the teeth in both the upper and lower arches so that not only the position and angle of each individual tooth can be controlled but the fit between each upper and lower tooth can be influenced, to not only straighten the teeth but also to create a good bite. Patients can choose between the normal small metal braces or have the more aesthetic clear brackets. Even less noticeable alternatives for many bad bite patterns are Invisalign Teen® “invisible braces” and also the Incognito® lingual “hidden” braces which are braces that are put behind the teeth.
If you have recently decided to find out about having your bite improved, give us a call and we will arrange an easy First Visit orthodontic check-up so that we can hear your concerns and talk about your bite and about potential treatment choices.