How Long Do Braces Take?

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When you come into Woodhill Dental associates seeking braces for adults in Dallas, or if we determine that braces are going to be the best solution for your children, a lot of questions naturally arise.


One of the most prominent among these questions is, “How long will it take?”


We can look at that question a number of ways, so let’s delve into the details.


How Long Is the Procedure?


While every person is different, for most types of braces, you can expect the appointment to last 90 minutes.


A lot will happen during this time. First, the teeth will need to be thoroughly cleaned. Next, we will start attaching the brackets with a special bonding glue. The archwire is placed and checked to make sure it is properly secured. The final step is to educate you on caring for your teeth and your braces giving you every opportunity to have a beautiful, healthy smile.


We utilize state-of-the-art suresmile technology that allows us to take highly detailed 3D images of your teeth, so we can plan your treatment and deliver great results in a shorter time frame.


How Long Will I Wear Braces?


This is, of course, the most common question, but there’s no single answer.


Everyone’s situation is different, and the answer to this really depends on a range of variables, including the distance your teeth need to move and the jawbone structure and other elements.
Braces work by adjusting your teeth in small increments, using, at different times, stronger or weaker force. The goal is to get the job done as quickly – and correctly – as possible.


There are a lot of misconceptions about treatment times in orthodontics. We have utilized suresmile technology for 17 years, longer than any other practice in the world, to more effectively plan your treatment.


With more precise 3D planning tools for both braces and clear aligners, we are able to target where your teeth should be moved for optimal function and esthetics. We are generally able to use fewer wires over a shorter time frame meaning less trips to the office and less hygiene problems often associated with braces. Suresmile technology puts the power of planning in Dr. Johnson’s hands, not a distant lab technician who does not know you.
So, having said all that, we can make some estimates.


For fixed braces, the treatment time can last anywhere from 6 to 24 months (for really severe cases). Most treatment is completed within 12-18 months with the average treatment time in our office being 15 months.


For removable, invisible braces, the most common treatment is between six and nine months as clear aligners should be utilized for less complex treatments that require straightening rather than bite correction.  


Does It Take a Long Time to Get Used to Wearing Them?


Everyone is different, and will react to braces differently. However, most patients say that they are completely used to their braces after a few days to a month.


After about six months, many people say they forget their braces are even there. If you start to feel unexplained discomfort after that time, it will usually go away on its own. If not, be sure to call us.


How Long Before I See Results?


If you’re going to go through the process of getting braces, you’re going to want to see that it’s working.


Your teeth are going to move gradually, though, so sometimes it may be hard to notice the changes.


Just like anything else, there are a lot of factors that could impact this answer, but, as a general rule, if we assume that a normal procedure for fixed braces requires 12 to 18 months to complete, then you could start noticing improvements in two or three months. However, there are some cases in which people notice a difference in just a single month.


What Variables Impact the Time Required?


Any number of situations could increase or decrease the time required to complete your procedure.
Some of the most common variables include mild to moderate bite issues, the severity of the crowding, whether or not you need to remove permanent teeth, or if there are permanent teeth yet to erupt.


Missing teeth may also cause extra problems, and if there is a discrepancy in the sizes of the upper and lower jaw, that may require a lot of extra work.


How Often Will I Need to See the Dentist/Orthodontist?


In order to ensure that the procedure goes according to plan, your braces will need to be adjusted regularly. We usually schedule these appointments every six to eight weeks. This is when we will adjust the braces or issue new aligners, so it’s important that you keep each appointment.


Can We Cut Down the Time It Takes?


The technology and techniques we use are designed to make this entire process as fast and effective as possible. We don’t want to risk going so fast that it doesn’t produce the results we want.

Beyond that, the best thing you can do to help the process along is follow all the instructions and keep all of your appointments. Take good care of your teeth during this time, and it won’t cause any extra complications.

If you have any more questions about Dallas Orthodontics and the braces process, contact us and we’ll answer them for you.