Braces that are claimed to be faster, speedier or quicker: Truth or Fallacy

World-renowned orthodontist Kevin O’Brien examines the background, methods and marketing claims behind a much-hyped system of ‘fast teeth straightening’ in this blog post. In a well-balanced evaluation, he reflects that the system may be a short-term ‘compromise treatment’ that could improve the appearance of a few teeth that don’t need major straightening, but which is of concern if applied to more complex cases and to teens. O’Brien also flags the lack of experience required by general practitioners, the lack of clinical trials supporting the claims, and the lack of transparency regarding exactly how the ‘fast teeth straightening’ system works as areas of concern.

Sydney’s leading Invisalign and Invisible Braces Orthodontist, Dr Vandana Katyal, is an expert on tooth movement and changing smiles. We get patients contacting us and coming for initial consultations asking about braces that are claimed to be faster, speedier or quicker or if they could be done in 6 months! Yes it can be done. Sometimes speeding orthodontic treatment is the right approach and sometimes its totally the wrong approach.

How do you know if you are a candidate for braces that are claimed to be faster, speedier or quicker, rapid smiles or the media-frenzied six month smiles? What are the factors that may make tooth movements faster or slower? And at what cost? These are important questions to ask and answer before you start such treatment.

Dr Katyal, an Orthodontist in Mosman, (Sydney’s North Shore), shatters all myths to reveal the truth that is often masked by vested interests about braces that are claimed to be faster, speedier or quicker. Read On!

Severity of crookedness of your teeth – This is the number one factor in estimating your treatment time. Studies have shown that healthy tooth movement, although variable, should only range from 0.25 – 1 mm per month. With all other factors being equal and favourable, when we see teeth crowding (or crookedness) of 0-4 mm your estimated treatment time is often 4-6 months. As the crookedness increases, so does treatment time.

Your bite – Your current bite and its final destination/goal is another big factor to consider when we are trying to speed your treatment. Does your bite need changing? Is it a traumatic bite. Who can best answer these questions? To be honest, none other than a specialist or expert orthodontist. Rest assured you are in safe hands at CCC Smiles Orthodontist Sydney led by Dr Vandana Katyal.

Vibration devices – The market is now flooded with Acceledent® and other similar devices that are supposedly meant to speed tooth movement. However, research shows these claims are over-stated and often misleading. Acceledent® is a small device that is placed in the mouth and allowed to vibrate for 20 minutes per day during your orthodontic treatment. The manufacturers claim increase speed of tooth movement however, human and animal studies show the opposite result! Cost – Can be anywhere from $1000-$1500!! Unless proven otherwise, Dr Katyal does not recommend or use the Accelerant® device during orthodontic tooth movement either with braces or with Invisalign®.

Your age – Although rate of tooth movements is often similar in children and in adults once treatment is on its way, often the start of treatment shows a longer lag time for tooth movement in older adults. Bites can often be easily corrected in children and teens when compared to adults.

Other factors – Closing or opening gaps, compromised medical history, gum disease and certain medications can either speed or slow down the tooth movement rate during your braces or Invisalign® clear aligner treatment.

Specialist Orthodontist or a General Dentist? – Specialist orthodontists such as Dr Vandana Katyal are experts in moving teeth as fast as possible given all conditions and treatment objectives. Orthodontists are also able to handle complex bites and foresee risks before they may occur. In Australia, every progressive Orthodontist attends at least 20 hours of continuing education and conferences per year only related to ORTHODONTICS and nothing else!! Dr Katyal is a conference addict and not only does she lecture around the world but also research latest treatments and publishes them in reputed journals.

Surgical therapies to accelerate tooth movement – Recent studies of  Corticotomy, Piezocision, etc (intentional jaw bone injury in a surgical procedure) show rapid alignment of teeth in the first 1-2 months but the effect dilutes after the while. Moving teeth is not just about aligning the tops of them but also about placing roots in a healthy position for future stability. These surgeries are not well researched, come with certain risks and additional costs that you as a patient will have to bear.

Long-term stability with rapid smiles and six-month smiles – This is questionable. In milder cases of crooked teeth – these companies can easily get you a stable results. In moderate – severe case of crookedness or bite discrepancies, its best to approach the entire treatment with commitment and evidence-based manner. Dr Katyal reads over 10-20 hours per week of journal articles, on top of establishing a full time practice, teaching and research! You will find her not only personable but also very transparent with how to best apply the science and latest innovations to your situation.

Its cheaper to just get teeth aligned quickly – DEFINITELY NOT! – After all, all you want is a little bit of improvement right? The amount of times I have refused treatment because of this fallacy is numerous. Firstly, a little bit of improvement is not what you really want. Most people fear the commitment and the lifestyle change at first, however, once treatment begins its the almost always the opposite! The number of times I have had patients tell me how happy they are within 3-6 months of starting Invisalign® or Clear Braces or Invisible Braces with me and that now they would like to continue to the optimal results is unbelievably at a 100%!!!

So, you still want straight teeth and fast! How do you go about it?

  1. Choose a specialist orthodontist such as Dr Vandana Katyal – Tip: No referral is required to see Dr Katyal at CCC Smiles! Just ring 02-80589801 or email for your first appointment and know your options!
  2. Know your risks and benefits by asking questions and getting involved in your treatment plan.
  3. Speak to peers who may have tried rapid tooth movement strategies before ask about their experiences.
  4. Start treatment in a timely manner and advise your orthodontist honestly about your short-term, medium-term and long-term smiles goals you would like to achieve
  5. Be committed to your treatment, wear your appliances as prescribed and maintain great oral hygiene. The less breakages of your braces / Invisalign® attachments, the better and quicker your treatment finishes.
  6. Motivate yourself with remembering where you started and where you are today by comparing your initial photographs and progress photographs!
  7. Do not miss any orthodontic appointments at CCC Smiles.
  8. Advise Dr Katyal if you are travelling so we can best accomodate your needs just before and after your travels.
  9. Choose orthodontists that practice latest and advanced customised digital orthodontics such as Dr Vandana Katyal – studies show if the latest 3D technology is applied to braces and clear aligners such as Invisalign®, results may be far superior, comfortable and faster.

The recent advances in orthodontics are nothing short of a leap! After all 2016 is the leap year so why not take a leap with CCC Smiles Mosman North Shore Orthodontist in Sydney. Call us, Visit Us, Drop In, Say Hello!!


“It’s better to go slow in the right direction than go fast in the wrong direction” – Simon Sinek, Motivational quote for your everyday life and Orthodontics!

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