Grand Rapids, MI Orthodontist
The main goal of Phase 2 treatment is to move teeth into proper position and improve bite, appearance, and function. Not every patient will require two phases of treatment as most orthodontic problems can be corrected in one comprehensive stage of treatment.
Our Grand Rapids orthodontist will evaluate the starting point of your child’s smile and determine whether two phases are needed. Please check out our page on Phase 1 orthodontics so you and your child can learn about what is expected during that stage.
Here is what you need to know about.
Phase 2 treatment is commonly what people think of when they hear the word “orthodontics”. During this phase, Dr. Miller will use a full set of braces such as LightForce customized clear braces, or Invisalign® clear aligners, to correct gaps between teeth, overbites, underbites, and overall misalignment.
This phase occurs once your child has all or most of their permanent teeth. While the goal of Phase 1 treatment was to make room for incoming adult teeth, the goal of Phase 2 is to ensure teeth and jaws are in the proper position and functioning as they should.
Essentially, Phase 1 treatment provided the foundation needed for Phase 2 to be the most effective and successful. Instead of starting from scratch, there has already been progress made before full braces are put on. This in turn can shorten the length of Phase 2 treatment.
Every patient is different and not all Phase 2 treatment is the same. Dr. Miller will discuss your child’s treatment plan with you during their initial orthodontic consultation.
Generally, patients begin Phase 2 treatment when they are around 11 or 12 years old. That isn’t to say that individuals can’t undergo this phase if they are a different age. Dr. Miller can evaluate your orthodontic problems and assess when the time is right for Phase 2 intervention.
Though the length of treatment differs, on average, it will take 12-20 months for Phase 2 to be complete with either braces or clear aligners. Ultimately, the extent of a patient’s orthodontic needs will dictate how long Phase 2 treatment lasts.
Please note that a custom-made retainer will be given to your child following the completion of Phase 2 treatment. This retainer will help keep the teeth and jaws from moving back into their original positions once braces or aligners are removed.