Two Phase Orthodontics in Philadelphia, PA
Some younger patients benefit from orthodontic treatment before the adult teeth fully develop. In these cases, board-certified orthodontist Dr. Sam Kadan recommends two-phase orthodontics. This approach has many benefits for children in the Bucks County and Philadelphia area.
What is Two Phase Orthodontic Treatment? How is It Different from Other Treatment That Takes Place?
As the name indicates, two-phase orthodontics involves two distinct phases of treatment for children. The problems are usually identified during the child’s first orthodontic evaluation, which should occur around seven years old. Estimates indicate that one in 10 children require two-stage orthodontics. In Phase I, Dr. Kadan focuses treatment on correcting any abnormalities in jaw development that affect the bite pattern. Having treatment early ensures that the adult teeth grow in properly thus reducing the likelihood of future extractions or at least minimizing the number of extractions. Phase I is designed to treat common problems in the early stages, such as:
- Severe crowding
- Problems related to tooth eruption
- Large overbites
- Deep bites
- Open bites
- Front teeth that are severely protruding
- Narrow jaws
- Habits that may be harmful to oral health and tooth development
Phase II of treatment involves standard orthodontic treatments to align the adult teeth.
Two Phase Braces
The phrase “two-phase braces” describes the use of orthodontic appliances at two points in tooth and bone development. Dr. Kadan may recommend braces early in your child’s life to promote healthy alignment of the teeth and jaw. The second set of braces is used during the adolescent years once the adult teeth have fully emerged.
What are the Advantages of Two Phase Orthodontic Treatment?
Two-phase orthodontics combines modifications to the facial structure and alignment of the teeth. The overall goal of this approach is to give your child the greatest potential for developing and maintaining a healthy smile, as well as optimum tooth and jaw function.
What If Treatment is Delayed?
Unfortunately if treatment is delayed, your child may face more extensive and invasive procedures in the future. Once the adult teeth develop and the jaw bone stabilizes naturally, the options for correcting any abnormalities may be much more limited.
What is Phase I Orthodontic Treatment?
As a board-certified orthodontist, Dr. Kadan recommends Phase I orthodontics when your child is seven to 10 years old and still has the baby teeth. The primary goal of Phase I orthodontics is proper jaw development to allow the adult teeth to properly erupt.
Benefits of Phase I Treatment
You may have noticed signs of a jaw problem in your child or observed baby teeth that are not properly positioned or overcrowded. Early treatment with Phase I orthodontics gives your child the best chances of avoiding future problems. Phase I orthodontics:
- Improves the width of the dental arches
- Reduces and possibly eliminates the need for jaw surgery
- Influences jaw development in a positive way
- Supports efforts to correct adverse oral habits
- Enhances the aesthetics of the teeth and smile while boosting self-confidence
- Minimizes and possibly eliminates the need for extractions in the teenage years (Phase II orthodontics)
- Improves speech development
- Simplifies and shortens Phase II orthodontic treatment
- Improves the alignment of the permanent teeth as they erupt
Do All Children Need Phase I Orthodontic Treatment?
Dr. Kadan recommends Phase I orthodontic treatment for children with moderate to severe problems with their bites, such as open bites, underbites, and crossbites, a condition involving teeth being nested inside the lower set of teeth. Having severely misaligned and overcrowded teeth in a young child is another indication that Phase I treatment is needed. Phase I treatment is intended to create a proper bed for the eruption and alignment of the permanent teeth. Doing this type of treatment in the early stages of tooth development alleviates the need for more complex treatments in the future.
The primary cause of advanced orthodontic issues in children is improper jaw development. The jaw bones may develop at different rates. Early treatment involves the use of orthodontic appliances that are similar to braces or retainers to guide the teeth and jaw to develop properly. Dr. Kadan may also use orthodontic expanders to address overcrowding and a crossbite. The details of your child’s treatment are determined during the consultation.
Any untreated teeth are left to develop naturally, and in most cases retainers are not necessary. Allowing a degree of natural development is beneficial. A successful Phase I orthodontic treatment will leave adequate space for these teeth to develop. In rare cases, permanent teeth do not develop properly due to being severely displaced or impacted.
Dr. Kadan integrates a resting period into his two-phase orthodontic plans to allow the teeth to shift naturally. Your child will still need Phase II orthodontics to shift the teeth into the final position. He may opt to remove some baby teeth as part of the resting period. You should anticipate follow-up appointments every six months so that Dr. Kadan can monitor your child’s progress.
What is Phase II Orthodontic Treatment?
After the resting period, your child may require Phase II orthodontic treatment to finalize the corrective process. The phase is more straightforward than Phase I and typically requires less time for full treatment. Phase I treatments can take six to 18 months followed by a resting period of 12 to 24 months. Phase II typically takes another 12 to 24 months which is a much shorter time period than what would be needed without the early treatment of Phase I orthodontics.
What is Comprehensive Treatment?
Comprehensive treatment usually begins around 12 years of age and involves the use of braces and other orthodontic treatments. Children and teenagers who undergo comprehensive treatment require only one phase of treatment that takes 12 to 30 months.
Your child may be a candidate for comprehensive treatment if the teeth are not overcrowded, and there are no problems with the bite that necessitates early (Phase I) treatment. Other problems that can be resolved with comprehensive treatment are:
- Severe bite problems that are treatable when the child is experiencing a growth spurt
- Severe bite problems requiring earlier intervention
Why Does the American Association of Orthodontists Recommend that All Children Be Examined By an Orthodontist at Age 7?
The American Association of Orthodontists recommends an orthodontic evaluation when your child is seven years old, an age that coincides with the initial eruption of the permanent teeth. This phase of development is the opportune time to evaluate jaw development for any abnormalities and to define an intervention that will alleviate future complications and more complex treatments.
How Much Does Two Phase Orthodontics Cost in Bucks County and Philadelphia?
Two-phase orthodontics is the standard treatment for children so the cost may be covered by your insurance. We will provide you with a complete cost of your child’s two-phase braces and other treatments after you meet with Dr. Kadan for a consultation.
Payment can be made by:
- Cash, personal check and credit card
- Financing through CareCredit®
- In-house financing options
We are an in-network provider for many of today’s top dental insurance companies. Using an orthodontist that is in your dental care network benefits you by:
- Providing lower out-of-pocket expenses
- Saving you time and money by completing and filing all necessary claim forms at no extra charge to you
- Accepting the payment we negotiate with the insurance company as payment in full
- Never sending you a bill for the charges that are above the negotiated rate, known as balance billing
- Expecting you to only pay your applicable co-payment, deductible and co-insurance according to the terms of your policy
- Letting you pay only for your portion rather than expecting you to pay the full cost and get reimbursed by the insurance company
What to Expect During Your Consultation
The consultation that you have with Dr. Kadan includes a complete examination, X-rays and imaging with the iTero® Element™ system that creates a three-dimensional model of your teeth and jaw. Based on his findings, Dr. Kadan decides on the orthodontic treatments that will improve jaw and teeth alignment. Your treatment plan may include orthognathic surgery, braces, and other orthodontic appliances.
Why Choose Sam Kadan Orthodontics
Dr. Kadan is a board-certified orthodontist, and only one in three orthodontists pursue board certification by demonstrating a commitment to excellence in orthodontic care, as well as continuing education. Dr. Kadan’s exceptional patient care has earned him a position on Philadelphia Magazine’s list of Top Dentists for 2016, winner of the 2016 Happening List and 2015 designation as an Invisalign® Elite Provider. He completed his orthodontic specialty training at the University of Rochester, and he currently holds a faculty position at the University of Pennsylvania School of Dental Medicine to help develop the skills and expertise of future orthodontists.
Dr. Kadan has designed his facility to reflect his approach to patient care, and we look forward to giving you a tour as part of your consultation and introduction to our practice.
Seeking early treatment for your child via two-phase orthodontics minimizes the likelihood of needing more extensive treatments in the teen and adult years. If you would like to learn more about two-phase braces and other advanced orthodontic procedures, contact us to schedule a consultation with board-certified orthodontist Dr. Sam Kadan. Our offices are conveniently located in Chalfont, Doylestown, and Harleysville.