You only get one chance to make a first impression. So what does your smile say about you?
It’s okay if you don’t have a perfect smile. Very few people are born with one. Today’s orthodontic techniques make getting that perfect smile possible, and it doesn’t take as long as you might think.
So, how long do braces take to straighten teeth? The answer varies by the teeth in question.
What Are Braces?
Old-school braces are the metal brackets attached to your teeth and fixed together with wires. At Weiss and Tor Orthodontics, we use metal braces to treat certain conditions like crooked or crowded teeth. We also use Invisalign as an effective way to straighten your teeth for the perfect smile.
Invisalign works a little differently than braces, offering a discreet, safe, and effective way to correct various alignment issues without using metal brackets and wires. Invisalign employs clear aligners that look and fit like the ones athletes wear to protect their teeth.
These aligners are much smaller, and you can take them out, unlike braces, which makes them much more attractive to people. In many cases, Invisalign can be more effective than traditional braces.
Braces aren’t just for kids either, although we recommend your child see an orthodontist by age 8. Braces and Invisalign treatments can start as early as 11 or 12 years old, but it’s essential to understand what is happening with your child’s teeth before then.
Adults are often treated with braces to straighten crooked teeth. As we age, our mouth changes, wisdom teeth come and go, and other factors impact the shape of our smile.
The invisible teeth-straightening solution is Invisalign. With Invisalign’s rise in popularity, many adults are turning to this treatment to improve their smiles.
How Long Do Braces Take?
Traditional braces and Invisalign have proven to be highly effective at treating every condition impacting your smile and at any age. Depending on your situation, your teeth straightening options take varying lengths of time to complete. We will evaluate your smile at Weiss and Tor Orthodontics and recommend the appropriate treatment for your condition.
Treating Crowding Teeth
Crowding teeth results from not having enough space in your jaw for all the teeth to grow in properly. Unfortunately, this results in teeth coming in at odd angles, sometimes overlapping and twisting.
The treatment will begin with the straightening of your teeth. After your teeth are straight, we then spread the teeth apart. In all, this could take from six months to 1-1/2 years, depending on the severity of your condition.
You might also need an interproximal reduction which removes teeth enamel to ensure you have enough space. Excessive crowding may require additional procedures before braces or Invisalign treatments can begin.
Treating Gaps Between Teeth
Gaps between teeth are common, notably the Madonna Gap, a space between the two front teeth. It’s also known as a diastema. Gaps occur in a single area or throughout the teeth, and everyone is different.
Any too large space between teeth would be considered a gap, and with multiple gaps, you could develop gum disease, crooked growth, and twisting. Adult braces are effective at closing gaps while straightening in around six months to a year. Invisalign uses multiple trays to do the same, and often faster than braces.
Some people have teeth that are too small. Too small teeth may require restorative bonding after your braces come off to close the remaining gaps.
A small overbite is normal, but excessive overbites happen when the top teeth overlap the bottom teeth. Overbites are easily treatable with braces or Invisalign. Invisalign treatment consists of elastic bands and attachments to your teeth, similar to braces to help realign your jaw.
These elastic bands provide additional force similar to braces that will help bring your teeth into the proper positions. Our orthodontists will determine how the treatment will proceed after a careful evaluation.
Treating Underbites and Crossbites
Also known as malocclusion, underbites and crossbites are essentially the same conditions. When the upper and lower jawbones become misaligned, it results in an incorrect overlap of the top and bottom rows of teeth.
It could result in the teeth on the bottom or top protrude further to one side or the other, hence the term crossbite. It might result in the lower front teeth protruding out further than the upper teeth, referred to as the underbite. If left untreated, these conditions could require surgery that is both complex and expensive.
Braces and Invisalign have proven effective at shifting the teeth into the correct position for the proper bite. Yet, they remain the most complex and difficult to correct. You’ll need a 3D-image scan of your entire mouth, jaw, teeth, and roots to come to the right diagnosis.
Our doctors will evaluate this scan and recommend a treatment plan to bring your bite back to normal. It can take between one and two years, and in some cases, oral surgery may be necessary to remove or adjust your teeth for optimal results.
Treating Open Bites
Open bites are less common ailments, but they do occur. Genetics can be to blame in some cases. Another common cause is pacifiers and thumb sucking. Fortunately, this condition is easily treatable with braces or Invisalign and often completed in less than a year.
Invisalign often works better and faster than braces when treating open bites. However, in rare cases, you could need surgery to achieve optimal results. Our orthodontists will determine if surgery is necessary.
Get Your Free Consultation Today
So, how long do braces take? If you or your child suffer from any of these conditions, you shouldn’t worry about how long braces take. You should be asking yourself, why haven’t I done anything about it yet?
At Weiss and Tor Orthodontics, our doctors are experts in traditional braces and Invisalign. We handle all your orthodontic needs, including surgical orthodontics.
We encourage you to contact us today to schedule your free orthodontic evaluation. Once we see your teeth, we are confident we can give you the perfect smile you’ve always wanted.