Braces are a great way to improve upon your smile, but chances are you're not comfortable with the time it takes to get results. In most cases, it could take anywhere from as little as 18 months to as long as 2 years of wearing braces to get a better smile.
Fortunately, accelerated orthodontics offers a potentially faster alternative to traditional braces. The following goes into detail about the procedure itself, along with the advantages and disadvantages you should expect.
How It Works
Accelerated orthodontics combines the use of braces with a bit of minor oral surgery to lessen the time needed for dental correction. Your orthodontist will achieve this through the use of a minimally invasive technique known as micro-osteoperforation, which calls for removing minuscule amounts of alveolar bone.
This bone remodeling technique effectively lowers the amount of resistance to the force applied by the braces, allowing the orthodontist to align your teeth in less time than it would take with braces alone. As the alveolar bone heals, it releases large amounts of calcium deposits, allowing the bone to grow as strong as it was prior to the treatment.
How It Benefits Your Smile
Adult patients are often drawn to accelerated orthodontics due to the relatively short amount of time that is needed to straighten teeth. On average, you'll wear your braces for 3 to 9 months, after which you'll wear your retainer for another six months. Some orthodontists may recommend you wear your retainer for a bit longer to achieve the best possible results.
The procedure itself is relatively painless, and it usually takes 7 to 10 days to recover; although, some slight swelling is to be expected. Surgery aside, undergoing accelerated orthodontics is similar to having traditional braces fitted. In most cases, you'll be able to use the same types of braces commonly used for traditional treatments, including Invisalign braces.
Since the accelerated orthodontic procedure causes your teeth to shift more quickly, your braces will need to be adjusted much more often than what you'd experience with traditional braces. This means you may find yourself visiting your orthodontist on a bi-monthly basis. The procedure is also recommended only for those who require minor dental corrections. If you need more comprehensive work done, your orthodontist may recommend traditional braces.
According to oral and maxillofacial surgeon Dr. Majid Jamali, the going rate for a typical accelerated orthodontics procedure is usually around $3,500 to $5,500. Additional treatments related to the procedure can easily push the final cost past the $10,000 mark. Since few insurance companies cover the procedure due to the fact that it's considered a cosmetic treatment, it's likely that you'll have to bear the entire cost out of your own pocket.
As with traditional braces, the results of the treatment are largely dependent on your own ability to cooperate with your orthodontist. This is especially important when it comes to retainer use, as not following through with this critical component of the procedure could have less than favorable results for your smile.
Is It Right for You?
If you've been looking forward to achieving a beautiful smile with the help of braces, but balked at the considerable amount of time needed to complete the procedure, accelerated orthodontics may be just what you're looking for. The shortened time frame needed to complete the procedure means that minor cosmetic corrections can be done in a much faster time than traditional braces typically take.
On the other hand, there are instances where you may not be able to take advantage of accelerated orthodontics. For instance, if you're experiencing severe crowding that calls for extracting one or more of your teeth, your orthodontist may recommend you pursue more traditional means of treatment. For more information, contact a professional such as Kevin J Owoc.