How Long Do Braces Take to Work?

by Michael Abdoney - 01/16/2018 -Braces

Your family dentist just said your child needs braces, and you’re now calculating how much it’ll cost for your child to have a perfect smile. But you need to know how long do braces take to work so you can budget accordingly.

The short answer to this question: it depends.

Factors that affect the duration a person needs to wear braces include age, type of treatment, and individual needs. The latter factor has the greatest impact as it could be a minor adjustment or a major treatment.

On Average, How Long Do Braces Take to Work?

The average for orthodontic treatment is 16-18 months. It can, however, take as little as 6 months or as long as 24 months, sometimes more.

For patients who only need to close a gap, braces or Invisalign may only need six to eight months to work, though some orthodontic professionals may suggest traditional braces for faster results.

In cases of adults, the average length of time for braces is usually shorter than for children, depending on the patient’s specific needs. And with more adults opting for braces, the overall average time for wearing braces has declined.

The time a patient is required to wear braces does not include the post-treatment retainer needed to ensure the procedure lasts a lifetime.

Shortening the Time for Braces

A patient who carefully follows the orthodontist’s instructions will likely get their braces off sooner. This can be as simple as maintaining proper oral hygiene or, in the case of Invisalign, wearing the treatment for the full recommended time each day.

Patients should follow proper eating habits while wearing braces, which include avoiding sticky or hard food. Eliminating gum, corn, popcorn and most candy from your diet can improve the treatment. Breaking brackets can cause a patient to wear braces for a longer period of time.

Not everyone realizes that it is more difficult to brush your teeth with braces, and there are techniques for proper brushing.

Why Do Some People Wear Braces for Years?

In some cases, a younger patient may have a major alignment problem, such as a tooth coming in in the wrong place. Such a case will require pulling teeth and waiting for others to come in. Depending on the wait for remaining adult teeth, this process could take five years or more.

Understanding How Long You’ll Wear Braces

Even with proper care, patients will ask, “How long do braces take?” The answer can only be answered by an orthodontic professional.

While the time it takes for braces to show results will vary by patient, an orthodontist can help you understand the amount of time required. Check out our treatment options to find out which is best for you or your child.

If you are considering treatment for braces in Tampa, contact us and schedule your first appointment. Our orthodontists can assist you with treatment options, including Damon System braces and Invisalign, and even provide an estimated amount of time you or your child will need to wear braces.