Adolescence is a pivotal point in everyone's life. During this time, we undergo all sorts of physical, emotional, and social changes: not only this, but the teen years are also very important from a health perspective. It's typically around ages 11 – 13 that most (if not all) of the baby teeth have been replaced by permanent teeth. Because the jaw and teeth are still in development at this stage of life, receiving orthodontic care in one's teen years is very common and very beneficial to their overall oral wellness. To help your teen achieve a healthy, confident smile that they can be proud of, board-certified orthodontist Dr. Michael Ashcraft of Ashcraft Orthodontics Jacksonville is proud to offer a range of ortho treatments for adolescents. Using his nearly three decades of experience in the field of orthodontics, he can customize a treatment plan to address misaligned teeth, crossbites, underbites, and more. Typically, a teenager's ortho plan can include traditional metal braces, Invisalign or other clear aligners, palatal expanders, and more. Contact our Jacksonville, AR office today to schedule your teen's one-on-one consultation with experienced orthodontist Dr. Ashcraft.
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Even if your teen missed out on receiving orthodontic care when they were a child, the adolescent years (from 11 – 18 years old) are still an excellent time to receive treatment because the teeth and jaw are still normally developing in this stage of life. Due to this, issues of misaligned teeth or malocclusion can be corrected within a shorter window of time when compared to receiving orthodontics as an adult. Receiving orthodontic care in one's teens is incredibly common and may even be seen as a "rite of passage." Typically, intervention is needed to address any of the following conditions:
- Misaligned or crooked teeth
- Crowded teeth
- Turned or rotated teeth
- Excess space between the teeth
To determine if your teen is experiencing any of the following, a thorough evaluation will be performed by Dr. Ashcraft.
What to Expect
Before any treatment is selected, we will perform a detailed examination of your teen's mouth and assess their teeth alignment, jaw joints, and profile. One of our ortho assistants will start off by taking digital x-rays and impressions, and then Dr. Ashcraft will perform a physical evaluation himself. Depending on what is observed, you and your teen should have a range of options for treatment, which could include traditional metal braces, Invisalign Teen, clear teeth aligners, or other orthodontic appliances, such as headgear or palatal expanders. Their treatment plan will be completely customized so their unique concerns are addressed. Ortho treatment could last as little as six months or up to three years, depending on the severity of the issues present.
Once orthodontic treatment begins, it's crucial to attend any and all scheduled follow-up appointments so we can monitor your teen's progress and make adjustments to their devices or ortho program as needed. It's also important to continue to see a general dentist once or twice a year so they can keep track of your teen's oral health. Because hardware, such as brackets, bands, and wires, can trap bacteria, food particles, and plaque, maintaining a good at-home cleaning routine will greatly benefit your teen's overall health. A member of our team will go over effective brushing and flossing techniques to make the transition to brushing with braces easier. If the teeth are not properly cared for, this could lead to a range of problems, like cavities or gum disease.
After the active phase of your teen's ortho treatment is complete, the retention period will begin. The retention period of orthodontic care involves the use of an appliance, such as a retainer, to prevent the newly positioned teeth from shifting back into their original locations along the jaw.
Some of your teen's orthodontic care may be covered by your insurance. To get the most out of your coverage, a member of our team will get in touch with your provider to ascertain your benefits. For any out-of-pocket costs, we accept a range of payment options, including our own in-house financing plans and financing through CareCredit. At Ashcraft Orthodontics in Jacksonville, AR, it's important to us that each of our patients is able to access the care they require.
Get A Straighter Smile
The teenage years are a prime time in life to receive orthodontic treatment and achieve a straight and healthy smile that will look beautiful for years to come. At Ashcraft Orthodontics Jacksonville, board-certified orthodontist Dr. Michael Ashcraft is proud to provide a range of solutions to improve your teen's teeth and jaw alignment. If you have any questions, or if you think your child is ready to start treatment, contact our office in Jacksonville, AR.