Why are there different orthodontic treatments?

The answer is very simple: everyone is different. Nobody’s orthodontic problems are ever the same. Every treatment is designed to address the patient’s problem list and objectives

Early or interceptive orthodontic treatment is performed at a younger age and it is mainly to address issues regarding the bite like cross-bites. It is done to prevent possible delirious effects of teeth or jaws if left untreated. Most interceptive treatments are performed with removable appliances commonly known as plates. Orthodontists may also refer to it as a first phase treatment because a second phase of treatment is nearly always required. 

Growth modification treatment is used by orthodontists to improve jaw discrepancies and overbites in growing patients. The best time to perform growth modification is during the pubertal growth spurt (regardless of whether all the permanent teeth have erupted). The types of appliances used are also called functional appliances. Braces are indicated after the growth modification treatment.

Comprehensive full fixed therapy (braces) is performed to align and move teeth. We sometimes start with braces or it can follow the early or growth modification treatment. Non-extraction therapy refers to the fact that we don’t have to remove any permanent teeth in order to align the teeth. Extraction therapy requires removal of certain teeth to make the teeth “fit” without compromising the bite and facial aesthetics.

Surgical orthodontics is when a patient required jaw surgery to correct the discrepancy between the jaws. This is done after growth is finished. This may be necessary for functional reasons to correct the bite or, the patient may wish to improve the profile. Braces are placed and the teeth prepared for surgery. After the surgery, the braces remain in the mouth until the case is finished. The Maxillo Facial and Oral Surgeon (MFOS) works closely with the orthodontist in some other cases. They will be called upon to perform surgical exposures (to align impacted teeth) and to place a TAD (temporary anchorage device) if so required. In addition, most orthodontic patients are advised to have the wisdom teeth removed if they are impacted.