When is the best time to begin orthodontics?
Though an orthodontist can enhance a smile at any age, there is an optimal time period to begin treatment. Beginning treatment at this time ensures the greatest result and the least amount of time and expense. The American Association of Orthodontists recommends that the initial orthodontic evaluation should occur at the first sign of orthodontic problems or no later than age 7, and Dr. Bieszki agrees. At this early age, orthodontic treatment may not be necessary, but vigilant examination can anticipate the most advantageous time to begin treatment.
What are the benefits of early orthodontic evaluation?
Early evaluation provides both timely detection of problems and greater opportunity for more effective treatment. Prudent intervention guides growth and development, and prevents serious problems later. When orthodontic intervention is not necessary, an orthodontist can carefully monitor growth and development and begin treatment when it is ideal (or determine that no treatment is necessary at all).
In addition, at Macomb Orthodontics, we have Team Junior Varsity for patients that aren’t quite ready for treatment: the fun continues even if the patient is not in active treatment!
Why is age 7 considered the optimal time for screening?
By the age of 7, the first adult molars erupt, which establishes the back bite. During this time, an orthodontist can evaluate front-to-back and side-to-side tooth relationships. For example, the presence of erupting incisors can indicate possible overbite, open bite, crowding, or gummy smiles. Timely screening increases the chances for an incredible smile.
What is Phase-One (interceptive) Treatment?
Phase-One treatment (also called interceptive treatment), if necessary, is usually initiated on children between the ages of 7 and 10. Phase-One treatment lasts about 12 to 18 months, but it can be less. The primary objective for Phase-One treatment is to address significant problems to prevent them from becoming more severe and to improve self-esteem and self-image.
In cases that are candidates for two phases of treatment, without Phase-One treatment, the case will become very difficult if not impossible to achieve an ideal result once all the permanent teeth have erupted. Dr. Bieszki only performs two phases of treatment when the case dictates that it is absolutely necessary.
What are the advantages of Phase-One (interceptive) treatment?
Some of the most direct results of interceptive treatment are:
- Creating room for crowded, erupting teeth
- Creating facial symmetry through influencing jaw growth
- Reducing the risk of trauma to protruding front teeth
- Preserving space for unerupted teeth
- Reducing the need for tooth removal
- Improving self-image
- Reducing treatment time with braces
Does everyone need Phase-One treatment?
No. Only certain bite or eruption problems require early orthodontic treatment. The most critical problems that should be started with treatment early are underbites and significantly constricted (narrow) arch forms. The problems of each patient must be assessed individually to determine the specific treatment options and the appropriate timing of the treatment.
Can orthodontic correction occur while a child has baby teeth?
Yes. Some orthodontic problems are significant enough to require early intervention. However, if a patient is not yet ready for treatment, we will follow that patient’s growth and development until the time is right for treatment to begin.
What is Rest Phase?
Rest Phase occurs at the end of Phase One treatment. Dr. Bieszki usually prescribes a night-time retainer to maintain Phase One results, until the rest of the permanent teeth come in.
You will visit the office every six months during Rest Phase so Dr. Bieszki can evaluate your child’s facial growth and dental development prior to Phase Two. Once all or nearly all the permanent teeth erupt, Dr. Bieszki will consult with you again reguarding Phase Two recommendations.
What is Phase-Two treatment?
Phase-Two treatment (the final stage involving active tooth movement and bite correction) involves the use of braces on all the adult teeth to guide them into their most optimal positions. Aesthetics, function, and stability of the final tooth positions are all key components in determining each patient’s treatment plan.
Will my child need Phase-Two (full braces) if he/she has Phase-One treatment?
It is best to assume that your child will need full braces even after Phase-One treatment. The period following Phase-One treatment is called the “resting period,” during which growth and tooth eruption are monitored. Throughout this period, parents and patients will be kept informed of future treatment recommendations.
Phase-One treatment prepares the way for a great result to be achieved when all the permanent teeth are erupted in Phase Two. Phase-Two treatment involves detailing the bite and harmonizing the smile with the face.
Future MO Patients at the Macomb Rec Center Picnic