Two-Phase Treatment

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Phase One Treatment

As they grow and develop, children sometimes exhibit early signs of jaw problems. The goal of Phase One Treatment is to develop a child’s jaw size to make room for the future eruption of permanent teeth and to improve the relationship of upper and lower jaws. If your child’s upper or lower jaw is not growing enough or is growing too much, orthodontic treatment can address this.

Early correction of improperly growing jaws can prevent later removal of permanent teeth to correct excessive overcrowding or overbite. Leaving such conditions untreated until all permanent teeth erupt could result in a jaw imbalance so severe that an ideal result cannot be achieved with braces.

During Phase One Treatment, we hope to:

  • Influence jaw growth in a positive manner
  • Improve the width of the dental arches
  • Reduce the need to extract permanent teeth
  • Reduce or eliminate the need for jaw surgery
  • Lower the risk of trauma to protruded front teeth
  • Correct harmful oral habits
  • Improve aesthetics and self-esteem
  • Simplify and shorten treatment time in Phase Two Treatment

Resting Phase/Observation

After Phase One Treatment, your child may need to wear a retainer at night to maintain treatment results and to allow the remaining permanent teeth to erupt properly.

Beginning about age 10, children lose 12 primary (baby) teeth, and by about age 12 to 13, they gain 16 permanent teeth. During this time, your child will need to keep appointments for observation, and retainer adjustments may be necessary, usually every 3-6 months.

Phase Two Treatment

It’s important to understand that your child’s teeth will not be in their final, ideal positions after the end of Phase One Treatment. This will be accomplished in Phase Two.

The goal of Phase Two Treatment is to position all the permanent teeth to maximize their appearance and function. Each tooth has an exact location in the mouth where it is in harmony with the lips, cheeks, jaws and other teeth.

Due to the improvements made during Phase One Treatment, Phase Two Treatment will require less frequent use of headgear and rubber bands. Phase One Treatment results also frequently eliminate the need to extract permanent teeth and greatly reduce the time spent in orthodontic treatment.

Phase Two Treatment

  • Increase the stability of final treatment results
  • Reduce the likelihood of impacted permanent teeth
  • Improve speech development
  • Improve position of the first molars
  • Guide permanent teeth into more favorable positions
  • Improve lip competence
  • Preserve or gain space for erupting teeth
  • Improve compliance before the busy teenage years