How Orthodontic Treatments Vary With Age

Orthodontics Hinsdale

Starting orthodontic treatment, whether for an adult or a child, typically prompts a blend of inquisitiveness and practical concerns. At Hinsdale Ortho, we find a clear understanding of the treatment process can turn these initial hesitations into a confident and informed start. Let’s take a look at the typical approach to orthodontic treatment for each age group to see how everyone can achieve a beautiful, healthy smile. 

Starting Early: Children’s Orthodontics

Early orthodontic assessment, typically around age 7, focuses on identifying potential issues and guiding the development of a child’s teeth and jaw. At this stage, teeth and jaws are still developing and the tooth roots aren’t fully formed, so caution is needed due to their sensitivity to damage. Therefore, comprehensive orthodontic treatment, including full braces, is often avoided, with orthodontists favoring treatments like expanders or partial braces. This early intervention serves as a guide for dental development, ensuring that any necessary comprehensive treatments in later years are more effective and less complex.

Teenage Concerns: Balancing Treatment with Appearance

The teenage years are a prime window of opportunity for orthodontic procedures. While teeth are now more stable and less vulnerable to damage, the jaw and teeth roots are still developing. This age is ideal for implementing Damon braces, offering ample opportunity to effectively reshape and align the teeth with treatment duration typically ranging from 1 to 3 years. As teenagers become more conscious of their looks, there’s also a growing interest in less conspicuous orthodontic solutions, such as clear aligners. These provide an alternative to traditional braces that are discreet and fit well with an active lifestyle. 

Adult Orthodontics: It’s Not Too Late

By the age of 25, our jaws and teeth are typically fully developed, yet this doesn’t close the door to orthodontic treatments. These procedures might take longer in adults due to the decreased flexibility of tissues, but effective results are still attainable. The aims of orthodontic treatments for adults can differ from those targeted to children, with the focus often being on enhancing bite functionality and aesthetics. Discreet treatment options are popular among adult clients, including clear aligners, that are virtually invisible, and lingual braces, that are placed behind teeth.

Treatment Duration and What to Expect

One of the most common questions is, “How long will treatment take?” The answer varies based on age, the complexity of the case, and the specific treatment plan. Children and teens might see quicker results due to their growing bodies, with treatments often only lasting around 18 months. For adults, patience is key as treatment might take a bit longer, often between 2 to 3 years. Throughout the treatment, regular check-ups are essential to monitor progress and make any necessary adjustments.

Life with Braces or Aligners

Whether you’re a child, teen, or adult, adjusting to life with braces or aligners is a common concern. You might wonder about food restrictions, oral hygiene, or discomfort. Your orthodontist will provide comprehensive guidance on how to care for your braces or aligners, what foods to avoid, and how to maintain optimal oral hygiene. Mild discomfort is normal at the start or after adjustments, but it usually subsides within a few days to a week.

Take Your Orthodontic Journey With Us

At Hinsdale Ortho, we believe everyone deserves a beautiful and healthy smile. We provide a wide range of orthodontic treatments and welcome clients of all ages. At our modern Hinsdale orthopedic practice, you’ll enjoy a comfortable and fun atmosphere. Our experienced team includes well-regarded orthodontists Dr. Nick Riccio and Dr. Susan Blair. Together, we’ll ensure you receive personalized treatment and ongoing support, for the best orthodontic care in town! Call us at (630) 528-0909, or schedule a free consultation.