The duration of orthodontic treatment depends on a number of factors, including your concern, age and aesthetic goal.

If you are considering braces, you are probably wondering how long you can expect your orthodontic treatment to take. Your treatment duration will depend on a number of factors, and your orthodontist will give you an idea of your particular timeline. Read on to find out what types of braces are available and how long they typically take to achieve the desired results…

How long does treatment usually take?

Although treatment time varies, patients can generally expect to wear braces for between one and three years. A number of factors will affect the length of treatment, one of which is the extent to which your teeth are misaligned. The more severe your misalignment, the longer you can typically expect your orthodontic treatment to take, especially if your orthodontist recommends removing teeth before placing your braces.

Your bite will also have an impact on the duration of your orthodontic treatment. If you suffer from an issue like an open bite, deep bite, underbite or crossbite, you are likely to wear braces for longer than if you just have crooked or crowded teeth.

What types of braces are available?

There are a number of types of braces available, and the type that you choose will affect the duration of your orthodontic treatment.

Conventional metal braces use brackets, which are bonded to each tooth. They can be used to resolve a range of issues, including gaps, malocclusions, open bites, crossbites, underbites and overbites, and crooked teeth and jaw issues. Your orthodontist will tighten your wires every few weeks, and your teeth will gradually shift into new positions over time.

Ceramic braces work in the same way as conventional metal braces but are made from fine tooth-coloured porcelain instead of stainless steel. This means that they are very discreet.

Both conventional metal braces and ceramic braces are usually the most effective and fastest orthodontic option and can treat even the most complex orthodontic cases.

Clear aligners, on the other hand, are not suitable for all orthodontic concerns. They are generally recommended to treat mild to moderate cases, such as crowded teeth and spacing issues. They do produce noticeable changes very quickly — some patients can see a difference after between two and six weeks of treatment. Although all patients are different, one can expect to wear Invisalign aligners for anywhere between six months and three years, depending on the extent of the issue that is being addressed.

What else affects treatment time?

To achieve optimal results in the most efficient time possible, it is important that you adhere to any guidelines that your orthodontist gives you. To prevent damage to your braces (and therefore possible delays to your treatment), you should avoid eating particularly hard and sticky foods. These include hard and sticky candy, popcorn, raw vegetables and chewy breads.

It’s also a good idea to see your orthodontist for regular check-ups and adjustments. This will ensure that your treatment stays on track and that any necessary adjustments are made. If you notice any breakages or other damages to your braces, be sure to see your orthodontist as soon as possible so that the relevant repairs can be made.

How can we help?

At Straight Orthodontics, we offer conventional metal braces and ceramic braces. We also offer clear aligners, including Invisalign, Teen Invisalign and Spark Clear Aligners. If you would like to straighten your teeth or resolve bite-related issues, we encourage you to come in and see us for a consultation to advise you on the treatment that suits you best. To find out more about the range of orthodontic solutions we offer, please look here.

If you would like to come in and see us, please get in touch to arrange a consultation or give us a call on 03 9585 8000.