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How Long Will My Teen’s Orthodontic Treatment Take?

Orthodontic Treatment for Teens

Grayslake, IL – For any orthodontic patient, one of the most commonly asked questions is “How long will my treatment take?” This isn’t something we can pinpoint precisely before treatment begins, but we can provide you an estimate for how long we expect treatment to take. But the length of treatment depends on a few things.

  1. The severity of the malocclusion – Some issues are easier to correct than others, so treatment will naturally take less time. Your best friend may have only needed braces for 10 months, but you still have them on after 18. That may simply be because your malocclusion was much more severe and therefore needs longer for the braces to correct.
  2. How your body responds – One factor orthodontists can not plan for is how your mouth will respond to treatment. Some mouths respond quickly, allowing patients to show off their new smiles in no time. But for others, their bodies respond slower to the movement the braces are trying to make. We simply can’t account for this in the beginning, so we won’t be able to tell you exactly how long your treatment will take.
  3. If you had early interceptive treatment – Many patients start their orthodontic journeys earlier. The recommended time to see an orthodontist is the age of 7. This allows an orthodontist to monitor the growth of the mouth and begin treatment at the time it will have the most impact. Early interceptive treatment can guide the growth of the jaw, allowing for the later straightening phase of orthodontics to be shorter.
  4. How well you follow your orthodontist’s care instructions – You are an active participant in your orthodontic care. If you are given specific instructions from your orthodontist, such as wearing elastics, it is crucial you follow these instructions to keep your orthodontic treatment on track. If you don’t, you are only lengthening the time you’ll be in braces. Likewise, if you wear clear aligners, it’s important to wear them as your orthodontist recommended, following the guidelines for when to switch to the next set. Each set is perfectly calibrated to achieve certain movements to allow for the ideal end result.
  5. Choosing the right orthodontist – The right orthodontist is crucial to ensuring effective and efficient treatment. Look for a board-certified orthodontist. This signifies an orthodontist is committed to providing the highest levels of treatment, and you’ll know you are in the hands of an expert.

The typical length of orthodontic treatment for adolescent and teen patients is between 6 and 36 months, followed by retainer wear. Dr. Stosich works as a team with his patients and their families to ensure treatment is on track and his patients can enjoy their new smiles as soon as possible.

Dr. Stosich is a board-certified orthodontist who provides the most advanced and efficient treatment found anywhere. To begin your journey with Stosich Consulting, call 847-548-4200 (Grayslake) or 224-408-2200 (Kenilworth) or visit www.identityortho.com.


  • Michael S. Stosich, DMD, MS, MS

    Dr. Michael Stosich is a board-certified orthodontist and the director of orthodontics at the University of Chicago Medicine. He is known for his extensive experience in leading clinical enterprises, publishing, and lecturing both in the U.S. and internationally. Dr. Stosich has expertise in starting, growing, and maintaining successful orthodontic practices, including those in pediatric dentistry, general dentistry, and multi-specialty clinics. He serves on the editorial board of several publications and has been involved in innovating patient care and education, focusing on the future of dental and orthodontic healthcare.

Stosich Consulting