Straightening your teeth can be a long and daunting process. Most people who get braces are pre-teens and middle and high school students, so many times these kids can have their braces on throughout their years in middle school. Typically, this isn’t so stressful since many of their peers often have braces on, too.

But if you’re a person getting braces later in life, the process might be something you really want to happen as quickly as possible in order to get it over with. Even younger kids who get braces will probably tell you that they want to get their braces off as soon as possible, because having braces can be a chore and an inconvenience. In fact, most of the time it takes years of orthodontic treatment to completely straighten a person’s teeth. So with all this in mind, you might be wondering: Is there any way I can get my braces off quicker? The answer is yes — there are actually many ways, in some cases.

The foremost important thing you can do to get your braces off as quickly as possible is to cooperate with your orthodontist, follow instructions and take proper care of your teeth and braces. If your orthodontist tells you that you need to wear rubber bands, you’ll need to wear them. If you don’t wear them, you can effectively delay the correction process and end up having your braces on for longer than you would have otherwise.

Some orthodontists also offer a technical aspect that will help speed up the straightening process. Here at Advance Orthodontics, we offer a device called AcceleDent, which sends pulses of vibration through the tooth, socket and bone to speed up the correction process. This works because the vibrations gently move the teeth faster than they would on their own. It can also help make your teeth hurt less, so you might be more comfortable, as well. However, hygiene and patient cooperation are always among the most important things you can do if you want to make sure you are getting your braces off as quickly as possible.

All treatment types, such as wire braces and Invisalign, take relatively the same amount of time, so you shouldn’t believe any advertising that boasts otherwise. The average amount of time that a person wears their braces for is 18-24 months, so if you haven’t gotten your braces on yet, then you should plan on having them for at least a year and a half. If you don’t come in for regularly scheduled checkups, this can also lengthen the amount of time you will have your braces on for. Don’t skip appointments, and make sure you schedule your next appointment every time you go in to the orthodontist. Some people who don’t go in regularly for appointments can have their braces on for a much longer period than they normally would have — sometimes up to a couple of years extra, even.

Every mouth is different, so some people require extra help besides braces to completely fix their teeth, such as headgear. Speak with your orthodontist to get an estimate for how long it will take to straighten and fix your teeth, because they will always be able to give you a more personalized answer.

Written by Dr. Darren Wittenberger, the best orthodontist Columbia MO has to offer, and owner of his own practice, Advance Orthodontics. Dr. Wittenberger enjoys sharing his expertise to ensure people can maintain the healthiest, straightest teeth possible!