The science of orthodontics is always developing, and both patients and their doctors are interested in orthodontic treatments that reduce the time it takes to fix dental issues. PROPEL® orthodontics is one of the newest advances in fast, reliable care and could offer a way to speed up treatment and get you the perfect smile you want faster than you might expect. Offered by M. Scott Runnels Orthodontics in Destin, FL, this exciting new treatment could change everything you know about getting braces.
This innovative new treatment is used in conjunction with braces or Invisalign to speed up the shifting of your teeth. Using this treatment, you can potentially shift your teeth 50% faster than with braces alone.
How the System Works
Understanding Traditional Braces
Your mouth is made up of both soft and hard tissues. The hard tissue is the alveolar bone that supports your teeth. Soft tissues include the gums and the periodontal membrane. When teeth grow in improperly, both the hard and soft tissues must be part of the re-alignment process. Traditional braces work by slowly using pressure to gently adjust the teeth and the hard and soft tissues until everything is in its proper place.
If left untreated, improperly aligned teeth can lead to a host of serious health problems, including cracked and broken teeth, pain from TMJ, and difficulty cleaning the teeth that can lead to painful gum disease, constant infections, and increased risk of cavities.
Parts of the System
Your braces system is made up of brackets that attach to each tooth, archwires the runs between the brackets and put pressure on the teeth, and ligatures that hold the brackets to the archwires. In some cases, you might also have rubber bands to put more force on certain teeth in a specific direction.
The archwires are tightened and then exert steady, but slight, pressure on the teeth. As this pressure grows, the soft tissue stretches on one side of the tooth and compresses on the other, loosening the bone.
As the bone loosens, it breaks down on one side and is reabsorbed by the body. On the other side of the tooth, new bone grows to fill in the gap left by the tooth. This whole process is controlled by osteoclasts and osteoblasts.
The Work of Cells
Osteoclasts and osteoblasts are cells. Osteoclast cells break down the bone. Osteoblasts create new bone cells. It is the pressure and slight inflammation caused by the braces that triggers these cells to do their work.
Speeding It Up With PROPEL®
This innovative device makes the whole process go more quickly by stimulating the cells involved with breaking down and building up your bone. The device works by making tiny, microscopic perforations known as MOPs in the bone around the teeth. You don’t feel any pain, but your body perceives this as an injury that must be healed more quickly than the normal breakdown and rebuilding process of braces.
Osteoclasts and osteoblasts rush to the area in greater amounts, kicking off accelerated bone growth and faster tooth movement. In fact, a study in the American Journal of Orthodontics and Dentofacial Orthopedics found that using this device actually reduced treatment times by up to 62% in some patients.
The Benefits of This Treatment
The most obvious benefit of this treatment is the way it speeds up tooth movement and allows you to get the smile and healthy mouth structure you need in record time. But that’s not the only thing to consider with this treatment.
Stop Avoiding Braces
Despite the risks of leaving teeth untreated, many people avoid braces; and that’s understandable. Some adults still have childhood memories of siblings or friends and multiple unpleasant visits to the orthodontist having braces tightened. They may also remember someone with braces forced to spend years skipping some of their favorite foods to keep their braces clean.
No one likes the look of braces, either, so it’s not surprising some people prefer to take the risk rather than get the orthodontic help they need. Modern braces, however, are quite different from the braces of a few decades ago, and with ceramic braces and innovations like Invisalign, your teeth-straightening experience won’t be anything like what you fear.
And now, with PROPEL®, treatment times can even be cut significantly. Even without the ability to speed up the process, getting braces is well worth it, and you’ll enjoy the benefits of healthy, well-positioned teeth throughout your lifetime. But when you find you can get the whole process over with in half the time, you really have no reason to put it off any longer.
In some cases, tooth problems are so serious that braces alone cannot treat the issue. In these cases, surgery used to be the only answer. PROPEL® actually allows many people in this position to avoid surgery entirely and treat their issues with braces or Invisalign combined with this MOP treatment.
Make Fewer Orthodontist Visits
No one loves having to take time out of their busy schedule to visit the orthodontist any more than they have to. Using this MOP system to stimulate bone regeneration means fewer trips and less hassle.
Use It With Anything
MOPs can inspire faster tooth movement whether you’re using traditional metal braces, ceramic braces, lingual braces, or Invisalign. This isn’t one of those treatments that is only available if you’re one of the lucky few who don’t have very significant orthodontic issues.
Do It the Natural Way
This treatment is so amazing because it recruits your own body’s natural repair system to fix your teeth. It’s basically a health hack for your mouth.
What’s Treatment Like?
The whole idea of poking a hole in your bone, even a microscopic one, might sound a bit terrifying. Fortunately, there’s nothing to worry about. With PROPEL®, the treatment is fast, gentle, and offers little or no discomfort. Before the orthodontist begins, you’ll receive a numbing treatment to keep you comfortable. You’ll likely notice a feeling of pressure as the MOP is made, but that’s about it.
Staying Comfortable Afterward
The key to staying comfortable is following the right aftercare steps. There are microscopic holes in your bone and gums, after all, so keeping them safe and clean is important.
Swish With Hydrogen Peroxide
It won’t hurt at all to do this, and it will keep your mouth very clean and constantly disinfected. If you don’t care for the taste, simply follow up by brushing with your favorite flavor of toothpaste.
Avoid Irritating Foods
Don’t worry: this restriction doesn’t last very long. You’ll be back to eating what you like soon, but for the first three days after treatment, you might find your mouth more sensitive to anything with acid or spice. This includes spicy food, of course, but also citrus fruits like oranges, lemons, or grapefruit.
Take Only Certain Over-the-Counter Painkillers
If you do feel any aching or soreness, it will go away quickly with some Tylenol; but you need to avoid any anti-inflammatory painkillers like aspirin or ibuprofen. After all, the whole point is inflammation: that’s what’s working the natural magic!
Am I a Candidate for This Treatment?
The good news is that nearly anyone who needs orthodontic work done and who is a candidate for braces or Invisalign is also a candidate for this treatment. That said, it is true that every person’s mouth is different, so the final decision should be made between you and your orthodontist after a careful discussion of all your options.
FAQ About This Treatment
How Long Does It Take?
The treatment itself only takes a few moments in the orthodontist’s office. It’s a simple, three-step process, and when you’re done, you can immediately return to your normal activities. Other than avoiding the orange juice, there’s really not much you need to do differently after having MOP performed on your teeth.
Is This Going to Weaken My Jaw?
When you think about putting microscopic holes in your gum and bone, it’s natural to worry that you’re doing damage that will weaken your jaw. Fortunately, there’s nothing to worry about. The MOP holes are so small, and your body is so good at repairing the bone, that your jaw will be every bit as strong after the treatment as before. In fact, your whole mouth will be stronger and healthier with all your teeth in the right place.
Is This Treatment Customizable?
The whole treatment is customized to your particular needs and the treatment plan you discuss with your orthodontist. Rest assured that the process is tailored to your situation.
Can Any Dentist Administer This Treatment?
The key here is to understand the difference between a dentist and an orthodontist. Both are experts at oral health care, but orthodontists receive special training to diagnose and treat bite problems like missing or crowded teeth or misaligned jaws.
An orthodontist must pursue extra education and practice after dental school. In fact, the program is so rigorous that many dentists are not accepted to orthodontic training. The key to getting the best outcome for your teeth is having a properly trained professional in charge of your treatment. Look for an orthodontist with the training and experience needed to properly use this treatment and you’ll be sure of having the best experience.
Is This Treatment Just for Teens?
Many of us think of teenagers when we think of braces, but these days orthodontics can help anyone: even adults with older jaws. The rate of adults seeking orthodontic treatment grew 14% between 2010 and 2012 and more than a million adults in North America now have braces.
Nearly all of these adults are also candidates for this MOP speed boost. If you’re an adult, braces can do as much for you as they can for a teen, correcting alignment issues, delivering the smile you want, and protecting you from future health issues. It’s never too late to consider orthodontic care.
M. Scott Runnels Orthodontics
A graduate of Florida State University and the University of Alabama School of Dentistry, Dr. Scott Runnels has been serving Destin and the surrounding area for 20 years. As a member of the American Association of Orthodontists and the American Dental Association, among other professional qualifications, Dr. Runnels is the perfect person to trust with your orthodontic needs.
Dr. Runnels works with a team of highly qualified administrators, professional assistants, orthodontic assistants, and Invisalign specialists with the training and experience necessary to treat all kinds of bite issues, misalignments, and other orthodontic problems.
Learn More About PROPEL®
To learn more and find out if this treatment could speed up your orthodontic work, contact M. Scott Runnels Orthodontics in Destin, FL today. It’s never too late to get started improving your oral health, and we can help you understand which treatments are best to give you a perfect smile and healthy mouth as quickly as possible.