Treatment Phases 1 & 2

Though an orthodontist can enhance a smile at any age, there is an optimal time period to begin treatment. Beginning treatment at this time ensures the greatest result and the least amount of time and expense. The American Association of Orthodontists recommends that the initial orthodontic evaluation should occur at the first sign of orthodontic problems or no later than age seven. Few patients will need to begin treatment that young, but there are some who will benefit from early intervention. For these patients, Phase One treatment is likely to consist of guiding the growth of the jaws so that the permanent teeth are in good positions as they come in. After a complete evaluation, Dr. Delgado can determine if Phase One treatment is needed to effectively treat any orthodontic concerns.

A check-up while some baby teeth are still present, and while the face and jaws are growing, may reveal that immediate treatment is not necessary, but that the child could benefit from treatment in the future (Phase Two). In these cases, the patient visits the orthodontist periodically to monitor growth and development. This “watchful waiting” gives the orthodontist the opportunity to advise parents when the best time is for that child to begin Phase Two treatment. Often the orthodontist is able to take advantage of predictable periods of a patient’s growth and intervene so that orthodontic treatment can have the best results possible.