At one time, the process of straightening teeth was a long and complicated one that often took years to complete. However, thanks to advances in orthodontic technology, it is now possible to achieve straighter teeth in a fraction of the time. One of the critical innovations in orthodontics is the development of three distinct stages of treatment. That’s why huntington beach dental implants is the best service for your dental health.
Three Stages of Orthodontic Therapy
Orthodontic treatment usually involves three phases: diagnosis and treatment planning, active treatment, and retention.
Phase 1: Planning Stage
The first stage, diagnosis and treatment planning, is when the orthodontist evaluates the patient’s bite and decides what course of action is necessary to correct the problem. During this phase, the orthodontist will complete a series of evaluations to determine the best course of treatment:
Panoramic X-rays: These X-rays provide a comprehensive view of the teeth, jaws, and surrounding structures. They can help the orthodontist identify problems such as crowding, tooth impaction, or jaw irregularities.
Medical and dental evaluations: These evaluations will help the orthodontist identify any medical conditions that could affect treatment, such as Temporomandibular Joint Disorder (TMJ) or periodontal disease.
Molds and photographs: The orthodontist will take impressions of the teeth and take photographs of the face and teeth from different angles. These records will be used to create a treatment plan.
Study models: The orthodontist will also create models of the teeth from the dental impressions. These models can be used to plan treatment and assess progress.
Computer-generated images: Using the photographs and study models, the orthodontist can generate a computer simulation of what the teeth will look like after treatment. This helps the orthodontist develop an individualized treatment plan.
Based on these evaluations, the orthodontist will develop a treatment plan tailored to the individual patient’s needs. The treatment plan will outline the type of appliances used, the treatment length, and the expected outcome.
Phase 2: Active Treatment
The second phase, active treatment, is when the orthodontic appliances are placed. The type of appliance used will depend on the individual patient’s needs. Typical devices include braces, clear aligners, headgear, and retainers. For example, braces are bonded to the teeth and use wires and brackets to apply pressure to the teeth, gradually moving them into the desired position.
Phase 3: Retention
The final stage, retention, is when the orthodontic appliances are removed, and the teeth are allowed to settle into new positions. During this phase, the orthodontist will fit the patient with a retainer to maintain the new alignment of the teeth. The length of time a retainer must be worn will vary from patient to patient. In most cases, retainers must be worn for at least six months after treatment. However, in some cases, they may need to be worn for a lifetime.
Orthodontic treatment is a complex process that requires careful planning and execution. However, thanks to the development of three distinct stages of treatment, it is now possible to achieve straighter teeth in a shorter period of time. As an orthodontist, develop a treatment plan that is right for your patients using the three phases.