Why does it take so long to straighten crooked teeth?

Image credit: Freedigitalphotos.net

You might think that straightening crooked teeth is a simple thing to do, stick on your wire with some brackets wait a couple of weeks and everything will be nice and straight. If only things were that simple.

The dentists that contact us here at cosmetic-dental-treatments.info often tell us that it takes anywhere from 6 months to 2 years  to straighten crooked teeth and here’s why.

Planning

The beginning of the process begins with planning and this will inevitably mean a few visits to the dentist.

  1. First visit. This will be your initial consultation where the dentist will discuss the various options, from this initial consultation a treatment plan will be provided for you including all of the different ways to straighten your crooked teeth  which may or may not include braces. (We explain more about this here)
  2. Second visit. (Typical time from first visit – 2 weeks)  after you have had a chance to digest your treatment plan, options and costs the next appointment will be to work out specifically the type of orthodontics you may have. You may also be required to have impressions,  particularly if the new invisible type of braces being used or the appliance is removable.
  3. Third visit (Typical time from first visit-4 weeks). Your braces may now be fitted and the process has begun.

As you can see, the planning process can often take a month from initial consultation to having the braces fitted.

Moving teeth

When you have braces fitted they are essentially pushing, pulling or rotating teeth in the direction required.  This force stimulates the remodelling of the bone around the tooth,  moving it out of the way in front of the direction of travel and rebuilding it after the tooth has moved.

Osteoblasts and osteoclasts are responsible for this bone remodelling.

There is a speed at which this remodelling process can happen, above which if the teeth are moved too fast the bone cannot remodel and reform around the tooth. This biological process gives a restriction as to the actual speed the teeth can be moved.

The type of braces

Different types of braces are able to move teeth at different speeds. The Inman Aligner can typically move teeth much faster although it is not  suitable for more complicated crooked teeth situations.

Braces which move teeth quicker may, unfortunately be out of someone’s budget leaving them with an option which move teeth slightly slower.

Moving front teeth versus moving back teeth.

Your front teeth don’t believe last word only have one single root, your back teeth  have multiple routes. As one can imagine these routes on back teeth are far more sturdy and firm in front teeth meaning moving back teeth becomes more difficult and therefore slower.

Some of the more modern orthodontic systems only focus on moving anterior (often known as the social six) teeth. This is because these other teeth just seen most in social situations and, went straight, give the biggest cosmetic advantage. If you just want to have a very quick orthodontic treatment looking for braces system which only moves the social six teeth could be for you.

Finding out about moving teeth

The simplest thing to do is to do a Google search for your particular problem, we have however found some good resources around the Internet, The BOS offers a range of leaflets but we’ve also done out own digging, so here is a special report by Dr Philip McDermott answering the questions everyone asks about Adult Orthodontics.

His report includes:

  • Is rapid orthodontics right for you?
  • Are you a candidate for invisible orthodontics?
  • How much will treatment cost?
  • How long will it take?
  • What are the downsides?
  • Will it hurt?

Visit the orthodontic section of the website to download.

Straight teeth are also more comfortable and less likely to develop cavities and other problems

Says Dr McDermott.

Now there’s an incentive for straigher teeth if ever we heard one!