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Braces

Braces removal before

07/07/2008

Question:

My orthodontist wants to remove my 14 year old`s braces after 2 1/2 years. Her left lower 12 year molar is only partially erupted. The orthodontist wants to remove the braces next week, then have my daughter`s wisdom teeth removed and her 12 year molar "exposed." She will then get retainers.

Question #1: Is it normal to remove the braces before the 12 year molar has come in?

Question #2: What is your thought about bonded upper and lover retainers versus removable retainers? I have spoken with other orthodontists that only do bonded retainers on the lower teeth.

Answer:

Braces are often removed before the 12 year molars erupt.  

Removable retainers are more popular with younger orthodontists and fixed/bonded retainers are more common for older practitioners. They both work so I would not be concerned. It is probably best to go with the retainers your orthodontist recommends since he/she has first-hand knowledge of your particular case.

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Response by:

Mark G Hans, DDS, MSD Mark G Hans, DDS, MSD
Professor of Orthodontics
School of Dental Medicine
Case Western Reserve University