Two-phase orthodontic treatment is a very specialized process that encompasses jaw and facial changes, as well as tooth straightening. The major advantage of two-phase treatment is to maximize the opportunity to accomplish the ideal healthy, functional, aesthetic and comfortable result that will remain stable. In some cases, interceptive treatment prevents adult tooth extractions or major jaw surgery.
Interceptive orthodontic care is one of the most rewarding treatment options that we offer to our patients. Interceptive care is exactly that, intercepting a problem before it gets out of hand. Treatment occurs at a younger age than conventional orthodontic care and is not typically as long either. The idea is to shift the teeth, manipulate growth, create space for unerupted teeth, break habits and prevent trauma before it is too late. Children between the ages of 7 and 10 are best suited for this sort of treatment. They are flexible, compliant and their growth potential is still maximum. Treatment usually lasts 14 to 18 months after which the child is monitored and the decision as to the need for second phase is made. Most children will require a second, more comprehensive phase of treatment in order to create a completely stable, functional and aesthetic occlusion.
Second phase treatment begins once most of the adult teeth have erupted. This phase usually requires less than 18 months with braces on all of the teeth. After the second phase of treatment, retainers will be worn in order to hold the teeth in the correct position.