What Affects The Timeline Of Braces?

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Sometimes in the process of growth, teeth may not grow as they should, leading to crooked teeth. You may see a cosmetic dentist and have the option of putting in braces. But how long will you be wearing braces?

The answer is not a straightforward one, as this period varies from one individual to another. Generally, it is from 1-2 years but can extend to 3 years for some people. The factors below will determine how long you'll have to wear your braces:


The age at which you first start wearing braces is a major determinant as to how long you will be wearing them. Generally the younger the person, the shorter he will need to wear braces. This is because children are still growing and their bone structure is more flexible, allowing the teeth to align more easily.

Children below 13 years wear braces for an average of 12 months while teenagers will wear them for an average period of 12-24 months. For adults, the average period of wearing braces is 24 months.

Type of braces

Traditional Braces

These are generally made of metal. They are effective and strong. If you choose this type of braces, you'll wear them for a shorter time.

Lingual Braces

Lingual braces are custom-made for each tooth, are worn behind the teeth and will last 1-3 years.

Ceramic Braces

Ceramic braces are strong and invisible but less effective than the traditional braces. This means you will have to wear them for longer.


These are near invisible and allow you to carry on normally; eating and drinking and cleaning your teeth as usual. You will be required to wear them for 16-18 months


Severely crooked teeth will take longer to align. The same applies if the distance to be covered is longer.

Maintenance and Follow-up

Your ability to follow instructions after you've been fitted with braces will help accelerate the healing process. Do you honor all your appointments? Are you practicing good oral hygiene?

Dental problems such as cavities and gum disease can interfere with treatment, causing you to keep the braces for longer. Adults may need additional treatment such as retainers.

The Alternative to Braces

If the timeline for braces doesn't work for you, talk to your cosmetic dentist again. They may be able to come up with a more immediate solution. Dental veneers are one that comes to mind; the dentist might be able to create veneers for the front teeth to create the illusion of them being straight. This only works for mild cases, so speak with your dentist. 

Contact a dental office like Dr. Jerry F. Maymi & Associates for more information and assistance.