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Phase 1 Orthodontics

Grand Rapids, MI Orthodontists

Phase 1 orthodontics, also known as interceptive treatment, is designed to create a proper foundation in terms of normal jaw and dental development before progressing into the actual straightening of teeth. Common oral problems like protruding front teeth, underbites or overbites, and more are treated by our Grand Rapids, MI, orthodontists during this stage before all permanent teeth erupt.

Here’s what you need to know about Phase 1 orthodontics. 

Phase 1 Orthodontics Grand Rapids Mi Orthodontist

Why Does My Child Need Phase 1 Orthodontics?

If, after a comprehensive evaluation, it is found that your child has moderate to severe problems relating to tooth development and jaw growth, our orthodontists will recommend Phase 1 treatment. Intervening sooner than later allows Dr. Miller to get ahead of issues that are otherwise difficult to correct once your child is older.

It’s best to begin Phase 1 when the patient is between 6 and 10 years of age. At this time, your child has a mix of baby and permanent teeth which can expose potential areas of concern to our orthodontist. Information gathered from your child’s pediatric dentist like early or late loss of baby teeth can also influence the course of action. 

Having your child start Phase 1 treatment is a great first step toward a healthy and beautiful smile. In fact, this phase will:

  • Encourage proper growth of their teeth and jaws.
  • Build a strong foundation with regards to correct eruption and growth of adult teeth.
  • Lessen their risk of gum, tooth, or jawbone injuries.
  • Reduce the chances of extensive treatments, like jaw surgery, later in life.
  • Lower the risk of speech problems, bruxism, or periodontal diseases.

What to Expect During Phase 1 Treatment

The overarching goal of Phase 1 treatment is to make room for incoming adult teeth. For many young patients, that means resolving a crossbite, underbite, overbite, or extracting stubborn baby teeth to ensure the “stage is set” for a healthy smile.

On average, Phase 1 treatment lasts between 9 and 18 months, though every patient has different orthodontic needs that require attention. Dr. Miller will speak with you and your child during the initial consultation so you are both aware of any timelines. 

Depending on your child’s individual situation, our orthodontist will use certain orthodontic therapies to treat bite growth, aid jaw development, and guide erupting permanent teeth. Common examples used include but are not limited to:

After the completion of Phase 1 treatment, we will provide your child with a custom-made retainer to wear while any remaining teeth erupt. Dr. Miller will also want to see them in our Grand Rapids orthodontics office for a checkup every 4-6 months.

Make An Appointment for Your Child Today

Our orthodontists in Grand Rapids, MI, understand that navigating the future of your child’s smile can feel overwhelming. Not every child will require two phases of orthodontic treatment but if they do, they are in experienced hands at Miller Orthodontics. Call Miller Orthodontics at (616) 942-9320 to request an appointment today.

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