Your journey to a happier, healthier smile is a huge milestone in your life! And while you may have just gotten started, you’re probably already looking toward the end goal — your straight smile without the braces.
Dr. Laidlaw knows there is likely one question on your mind from the day you first get your braces: When do I get my braces off? The short answer is that treatment usually lasts between 18 and 24 months for most people. The long answer is a little more complex. Let’s take a look at the different factors that determine how long you will be wearing braces before we can take them off.
Reasons for Treatment
Our team at Laidlaw Orthodontics has a lot of experience. We’ve seen a lot of smiles! What we’ve learned from treating so many patients is that no two smiles are the same. We can make a general estimate of how long treatment might take, but one of the main factors that will determine the duration is the severity of your case.
For some patients with milder conditions like simple crowding or spacing, their braces may be able to be removed in as little as a year. For some other patients with more severe cases like severe malocclusions, treatment could last up to 36 months. The good news is that with Laidlaw Orthodontics on your side, you’ve got the support you need to keep treatment as short and efficient as possible!
Your Body’s Response to Treatment
Your body is different than anyone else’s. Things like bone density, gum tissue thickness, and chewing patterns can vary. Oral habits such as clenching or grinding the teeth can impact your treatment.
Fortunately, Dr. Laidlaw is an expert in facial bone structure and development, so you’ll feel comfortable with her personalized approach. Working with a trained professional means that your treatment plan is designed specifically for your needs and can be adjusted depending on your body’s reaction to treatment. That means you’ll have the smile you want in the shortest time possible!
Your Role in Treatment
When it comes to orthodontic treatment, there are two leading players in the braces game: your orthodontist and, well, you! While Dr. Laidlaw designs your treatment plan, applies your braces, and adjusts your wires at every follow-up appointment, it is your job to care for them between appointments.
Following Dr. Laidlaw’s instructions is a crucial step in making sure your braces can come off sooner rather than later. You’ll need to keep your gums healthy throughout the treatment process by maintaining a solid oral hygiene routine. Sometimes, following our instructions to a T reduces treatment times! On the other hand, slacking on these instructions could mean you wear your braces even longer.
You’ll also need to keep up with your regular appointments in our Hillsboro office. These follow-up appointments are an essential part of your treatment plan because they allow us to assess how your teeth move and make any necessary adjustments. While we understand that you may need to cancel or reschedule an appointment from time to time, you should stick to the schedule as closely as possible to ensure your treatment plan stays on track.
Not taking care of your braces or aligners can increase treatment time, as well. You don’t want your braces or aligners to break or crack! Broken or cracked appliances won’t work, meaning that until you set an appointment to fix them, you’re losing valuable treatment time that will be tacked on at the end instead.
You can do your part by avoiding crunchy or sticky foods that might weaken the bond strength of your brackets. If one of your brackets does come loose, you’ll need to schedule an appointment as soon as possible so we can rebond it to your tooth.
Your Age During Treatment
Age might not matter in every life scenario, but it is highly relevant when it comes to determining when you’ll get your braces off. Although our team of experts at Laidlaw Orthodontics can adjust your smile no matter your age, treatment times are generally shorter for patients in their teens. The main reason for this is that children’s jaws are still growing, making them more flexible and adaptable during treatment.
Our jawbones stop growing by our early twenties, and orthodontic treatment after that point may require more time and effort. That doesn’t mean you should give up on improving your smile if you’re an adult, though! We still have plenty of treatment options available to straighten your teeth and boost your oral health. You’re never too old to explore everything orthodontics has to offer!
Good Things Come to Those Who Wait
Whatever treatment method you choose, it’s important to remember that nothing lasts forever. It might feel like it sometimes when you’re an orthodontic patient, but eventually, treatment will be complete, and you’ll be saying hello to your beautiful new smile!
Laidlaw Orthodontics offers a range of affordable treatment options to move your teeth comfortably, efficiently, and as quickly as possible. Going into your treatment journey, you may not have an exact date that treatment will be completed, but we’ll give you an estimated time before you begin.
In general, treatment usually lasts between 18 and 24 months, but this estimate depends on the factors listed above. If you’re using a transparent aligner system like Invisalign, it may take slightly less time to achieve your desired results. And remember: the best way to speed up the process is to follow your orthodontist’s instructions every step of the way.
Join Our Team at Laidlaw Orthodontics
If you’re interested in getting braces, you’ve come to the right place. At Laidlaw Orthodontics, we offer affordable, personalized treatment plans that are guaranteed to transform your smile into the grin you’ve always wanted.