How Long is the Average Orthodontic Treatment?

If you are looking to get braces to improve your smile, there is a good chance you’ve already heard a horror story about how someone ended up wearing braces for five or even six years. While that may have happened, that is an extreme case and certainly not what most people encounter when they get dental orthodontic treatment.

The Average Length of Time Most People Undergo Orthodontic Treatment Is…..

Every person is different, so it is extremely difficult to get an estimate on the average length of time it takes for orthodontics. However, most orthodontists believe the average length of time for orthodontic treatment is anywhere from six months to two years.

A person that only needs to have their teeth slightly shifted may only need to wear braces or Invisalign trays for six months to a year. On the other hand, someone with a more severe orthodontic case that involves dramatic shifts in the placement of their teeth may need to undergo treatment for a year and a half to two and a half years or more.

Different Factors Influence Orthodontic Treatment Time

It is nearly impossible to give an exact average estimate of how long it will take for orthodontic treatment to be complete because there are so many different factors that influence the time estimate. Some of the things that must be considered when trying to estimate the length of time for orthodontic treatment include:

  • Type of malocclusion that needs to be corrected – common types of malocclusions include overbite, underbite, overcrowding, and crossbite
  • Severity of the malocclusion that needs to be corrected – treatment time will last longer with more severe malocclusions
  • Type of orthodontic treatment chosen
  • Oral health – teeth will shift better if you keep your mouth and gums healthy
  • Previous orthodontic care – patients who underwent care for early dental orthodontics often have shorter treatment times

Things You Do Can Cause Delays in Orthodontic Treatment

Some factors influence the length of time it takes for your orthodontic treatment to be completed. These things include the severity of your overbite, underbite,  or whether or not you underwent early orthodontic care.

If you do not wish to have your orthodontic treatment delayed or prolonged, make sure you do the following things:

  • Brush and floss your teeth regularly – If you don’t brush and floss as often as your orthodontic recommends, you could develop gum disease or cavities which will delay or prolong your treatment
  • Attend all scheduled orthodontic appointments – these appointments allow your orthodontist to monitor how well you are responding to treatment. If there are problems, your orthodontist may be able to make changes to your treatment
  • Following all instructions given by your orthodontist – this includes foods to avoid with braces, using the right brushing and flossing techniques, and trying to avoid certain bad habits such as biting your fingernails or chewing on pens
  • Call your orthodontist immediately if your braces get broken or damaged – if it isn’t properly repaired, your orthodontic device may not be able to shift your teeth to their proper position and it may result in delays in treatment times

Schedule a Consultation to See How Long it Will Take for You to Improve Your Smile

The best way to see how long your orthodontic treatment will last is to schedule a consultation at Ponte Vedra Pediatric Dentistry & Orthodontics. During the consultation, our orthodontist will conduct a brief oral examination and take some digital x-rays and photos. After the examination, our orthodontist will discuss various treatment options with you and provide a timeline of how long each orthodontic treatment will last.

In addition to getting a better idea of how long orthodontic treatment will last, your consultation will allow you to get a general idea of how your smile will look after treatment. Using advanced digital technology, our orthodontist can show you how a specific orthodontic treatment will change your smile.

Curious to see how your smile could improve with orthodontic treatment? Contact Ponte Vedra Pediatric Dentistry & Orthodontic today!