The American Association of Orthodontists recommends that a child receive an initial orthodontic exam at age 7. If there are early indicators of bite problems, early interceptive treatment may be necessary, resulting in two phases of treatment.
Two-phase treatment focuses not only on tooth straightening but also physical and facial changes. During treatment, Dr. Jovanovski establishes a treatment plan to create an ideal functional, healthy and aesthetic smile that will remain stable throughout a child’s life.
What is the benefit of early phase treatment?
Children benefit greatly from early phase treatment. Early treatment can prevent the need for permanent teeth extractions and orthognathic surgery to realign the jawbones, later in life. Delaying this process can result in the need for more extensive treatment in the future.
Phase I usually occurs when the patient still has his or her primary teeth. At the initial consultation, we compile orthodontic records, including photographs, X-rays and models of the teeth. This helps Dr. Jovanovski to determine if and when treatment is necessary, the length of treatment, the frequency of visits, and the appliances that will be used.
During Phase I, the goal of treatment is to encourage proper development of the jaw and to help the upper and lower jaws fit together properly. Jaw problems can be identified and corrected at an early age. Children over the age of six that have an upper jaw growing too narrow or wide are ideal candidates for early treatment. Crowding of the front teeth can also be treated during Phase I to prevent permanent teeth removal later on.
Phase II is normal orthodontic treatment. Once all the permanent teeth have erupted, full upper and lower braces are placed for at least 24 months. The goal of Phase II treatment is to make sure that each tooth erupts in the right position in the mouth, so that the jaws fit together correctly and that the teeth will function properly. After Phase II treatment, retainers are worn.
Patients who undergo both Phase I and Phase II treatment are more likely to have long-lasting orthodontic treatment results.
To learn more about the benefits of Two Phased Orthodontic treatment, please contact our practice to schedule a complimentary appointment.