Teen Orthodontic Treatment

TeenTreatmentTreatment of young people between 11 and 18 years old can involve braces or Invisalign. The type and length of treatment are determined by the complexity of the tooth alignment and bite. Simple treatments can require 6 to 12 months, while a more complex bite and alignment issue may require up to 24 months to address.

In most of the complex treatments, cooperation with some sort of auxiliary is necessary, usually in the form of a dental appliance or rubber bands. This is the challenge for most teens, not only keeping up with something removable but remembering to wear it enough to make the correction.

If you are attempting to correct the bite, then full-time wear of the appliance or rubber bands is necessary (more than 20 hours a day). Asking a teen to do this for 12 months is unfortunately setting the patient up for failure.

We try to keep the required rubber band period to four months or less by utilizing other auxiliaries such as TADs (Temporary Anchorage Devices). This state-of-the-art treatment allows for the correction of many bite problems without patient cooperation, thus increasing the likelihood they will finish treatment on time.


Crowding is the most problem we see in orthodontics. The teeth may be twisted or displaced. Crowding occurs when there is disharmony in the tooth to jaw size relationship or when the teeth are larger than the available space. Crowding can be caused by improper eruption of teeth and early or late loss of primary teeth. Crowding is the lack of space for all the teeth to fit normally within the jaws. If you have crowded teeth and you want them straight then you have to make room. There are three ways to make room, expand the jaw, IPR (interproximal reduction) or extract.


Before                                       After
This patient was treated by expanding the arches.

Overbite (Class II)

Over Bite is when the upper teeth are too far ahead of the lower teeth, not only the front teeth but the back teeth also. It can be caused by the upper teeth being protruded or a recessive lower jaw.



Under Bites (Class III)

The treatment option for these patients are varied. If less than 10 years old the best option is Phase I and Phase II treatment, which has proven to be the most effective. If the patient is past that age, TADs are used to treat the patient.



Open Bites

Open bite is a condition in which either the front or back teeth of opposing arch do not contact. It is caused by oral habits such as tongue thrust, finger sucking or when the jaws don't grow evenly.



Missing Teeth

By being able to close the spaces for the missing teeth, we can keep the lower wisdom teeth (no extractions!) and save this patient a lifetime of dental work. No implants and bone grafts have to be placed for the missing teeth (which have to be redone three to four times over their lifetime) and now crowns placed on the implants (which have to be replaced at least six times over their life).  The time and financial savings are enormous. So if you or your child is missing a tooth or teeth, schedule an appointment for a consultation today. The investment may be not only a beautiful smile but the savings of a lifetime!


This patient was missing her upper laterals. The space was closed and the cuspids were contoured.
This patient's treatment included opening the space for restorations of her missing laterals.
x ray of patient with TADs
TAD's places to close space for missing teeth. We are able to maintain the lower wisdom teeth.
before & after
Before                             After
Before: Missing 2 nd  Bicuspid (has baby tooth but no permanent tooth underneath)

After: Space closed for missing tooth


Rubber Bands Are Out – TADs Are In

(temporary anchorage devices) are used by Dr. Sebastian to facilitate the movement of teeth without requiring patient cooperation.

The dated way to correct an overbite, open bite or under bite was to use rubber bands. To be effective, rubber bands had to be worn full time (20 hours a day) for 12 to 15 months. With the busy schedule young people and adults have now, this proves to be a challenge to complete. At Elite Smiles Chastain, we found patients often endured extended treatment times due to lack of cooperation.

Another method involves the use of bulky fixed appliances, such as the Herbst or Forsus, which are big and uncomfortable. TADs are more efficient, effective and comfortable, and require no effort from the patient.

TADs go in-between the back teeth, and are placed by the doctor in our office. They generally stay in the mouth for 4 to 6 months. We have found TADs reduces dependency on rubber bands by 70 to 80%, and dramatically reduce the patients’ length of treatment.

We Offer Invisalign for Teens!

Invisalign® has developed a special approach just for teens, aptly named Invisalign Teen™. This method helps teens adjust and document they are wearing their Invisalign trays. What are the average teen’s primary complaints about traditional braces?

  • “Braces are uncomfortable.”
  • “Braces are ugly and embarrassing.”
  • “I can’t eat and drink the things I want.”

Even though these concerns are often not valid, to teenagers they are.

As an orthodontics office, we’ve seen and heard all of this before. Invisalign Teen addresses every single one of these concerns, and offers a solution that will keep teens happy, and most importantly, protect your peace of mind.

Elite Smiles Chastain

91 W. Wieuca Rd., Suite 300 • Atlanta, GA 30342Orthodontics: 404.303.7400 • Pediatric Dentistry: 404.252.5900

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