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Short-Term Orthodontics: Breaking Down Barriers In Cosmetics

Many dentists often work within their specialty to provide patients with the treatments they need. For instance, Orthodontists in particular work with issues related to alignment, while cosmetic dentists work with aesthetic concerns. Both of these specialties focus on different areas of dental health, but sometimes these areas can intersect in interesting ways. One of those ways is the development of a new kind of orthodontics, called short-term orthodontics. Short-term orthodontics caters to a specific group of patients based on their dental health and works with minimally invasive methods to help align teeth while still providing a cosmetically pleasing appearance. 

What is Short-Term Orthodontics All About? 

Short-term orthodontics works to provide cosmetically-driven solutions for patients with alignment issues and, in turn, offer a more patient-friendly experience. It specifically refers to how patients wanting straighter teeth can potentially see results within six months rather than years of waiting. These treatments focus on eliminating financial costs typically associated with orthodontic practices and address cosmetic concerns for an overall pleasing appearance. 

To qualify for this type of treatment, patients need to have a relatively stable, healthy jaw and minimal signs of misalignment. Patients who qualify can be more cost-effective about their decisions for dental care and can move their teeth in the positions they need to maintain healthy tooth structure and facial symmetry. Short-term orthodontics appeals to alignment and aesthetics within the same treatment, offering a shorter time frame so patients can see results much quicker than originally expected. 

What Types of Treatments Are Used In Short-Term Orthodontics?

Short-term orthodontics works within a specific set of orthodontic appliances to help patients gain the most out of their dental health. These treatment options can include: 

  • Tooth-Colored Fixed Braces: Tooth-colored fixed braces offer a permanent solution that blends into the tooth’s natural shade for healthy retention and high amounts of aesthetics. These braces are less noticeable, provide the same retention as regular braces, and don’t require as much time as traditional braces. 
  • Sectional Lingual Braces: These braces refer to a specific form of anchorage, where the retention needed is supported by the front teeth. These appliances don’t require extensive work on the front teeth, help maintain the patient’s aesthetics, and are completely hidden from sight. 
  • Six-Month Clear Aligners: Clear aligners have become one of the best ways to straighten mildly crooked teeth without interfering with aesthetics gradually. These aligners can be worn from six months to two years, easily removed, and used as a prep stage for more permanent brace usage. 
  • Six-Month Brace Wires: Similar to the clear aligners, these use thin, translucent wires instead of plastic to offer safe alignment, offering the same amount of retention as traditional braces and less time for completion. 

Short-term orthodontics can be a great solution for those who do not wish to invest in traditional braces for treatment. For more information about these types of treatments and whether you qualify, speak with your orthodontist or cosmetic dentist to learn more. Always make sure to schedule an appointment ahead of time to keep up with your dental care!

Maureen Karl, DDS, FAGD
As a graduate of the University of Buffalo School of Dental Medicine in 2004, Dr. Maureen Karl continues to hone her craft through continuing education. Dental patients throughout the Granbury, TX area know they can rely on our practice for skilled dental care using the latest practices.