Can I get braces on just one arch?

It’s possible to get braces on only the top teeth or only the bottom teeth, but it isn’t ideal for everybody. For patients who are only interested in fixing cosmetic issues, this can be a treatment option. Getting braces on a single arch can help if you’re self-conscious of minor issues like crowding or spacing. However, for best results, it’s generally recommended to treat both arches at the same time. 

Getting braces on top teeth only

Many prospective patients hope to save some money by correcting only the top teeth, which are more visible than the bottom teeth. Just keep in mind, it is not possible to fully correct the bite (the way the two arches fit together) when only treating one arch. If you have a less-than-ideal bite before starting treatment, it will still be imperfect when you finish. Some people don’t mind this!

Getting braces on bottom teeth only 

It’s less common for patients to want bottom braces only as these teeth are less noticeable when smiling. However, some people have crowding on just the lower teeth and wish to correct this. This crowding often occurs as we age and wear our retainers less. Treating just the lower arch is sometimes done for patients who have experienced relapse after previous orthodontic treatment. 

Discuss your options with an orthodontist

Of course, some people are happy with how one arch looks and only wish to correct the arch they are less happy with. This is an option, but patients need to understand that treating a single arch won’t fix a bad bite and in some cases may even make it worse. The only way to find out if you’re a candidate for single arch treatment is to be evaluated by an orthodontist. Dr. Peterson in San Tan Valley offers free consultations for patients who wish to learn more about their treatment options. Give us a call today to get scheduled!

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