POPA: Straighten Teeth in Less Time - Dr. Colin Richman

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POPA: Straighten Teeth in Less Time

December 16, 2013

By: Dr. Colin Richman

If you have a misaligned smile, you probably want to correct the problem in as brief a time span as possible. Unfortunately, conventional orthodontic treatment can take years to achieve the desired results, depending on the extent of the problem.

Fortunately, patients have a speedier alternative to straighten their smiles. Pre-Orthodontic Periodontal Augmentation (POPA) allows patients to see results in as little as three months. Many patients will be able to achieve the desired outcomes in less than a year, although some cases can take longer.

Accelerated orthodontics speeds up the process of repositioning teeth because the structure of the bone is altered and able to respond to forces being applied to the teeth to reposition them. The bone then regenerates in accordance with the desired tooth movement. This combination allows the teeth to move into the desired locations much more quickly.

With the POPA approach, a periodontist will perform an initial gum surgery to prepare the jawbone for the treatment. It’s an outpatient procedure and most patients have a relatively short recovery period (around 7-10 days), unlike with more extensive orthognathic surgery that may also be performed for patients with orthodontics.

The periodontist will work with an orthodontist to plan the POPA treatment and the timing for the surgery. After the periodontist has performed the necessary surgery and the patient has healed sufficiently, the orthodontist will then place the appliances on the patient’s teeth and make adjustments every other week or so as needed for the desired movement. The appliances used are specific to the POPA protocol.

Accelerated orthodontics is especially appealing to adults who don’t want to spend years in orthodontic appliances that can detract from a professional appearance. The treatment is appropriate for younger patients who want to minimize their time spent in braces, too.

If you want straighter teeth in a shorter time frame than conventional orthodontic treatment will take, consider POPA. Talk to our experienced periodontists to learn more about this treatment, or ask your orthodontist if the treatment would be appropriate in your case.

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