Difficult tooth movements: achieving quality results efficiently and effectively

When we began our careers as orthodontists 30 years ago, it was challenging to treat cases that presented with difficult tooth movements predictably. Additionally, these cases took several years to finish and often required the use of heavy mechanics and forces.

Now with so many advancements in our profession, we’re achieving quality finishes that match our predicted outcomes faster and more comfortably. While there are still some orthodontists who may not be as confident treating these difficult cases, we are positive that understanding and utilizing new technologies increase our clinical efficiency.

We know every orthodontist wants only what is best for his/her patients, so we encourage our peers to do as we did and explore continuing education opportunities that show how technology can help approach difficult cases in a more efficient manner. For instance, after being exposed to the technology, attending lectures, and reviewing many clinical cases a few years ago, we began offering AcceleDent® at our respective practices, OP Smiles and Sellers Orthodontics.

Patients at Sellers Orthodontics and OP Smiles are treated with either clear aligners or Ormco’s Damon® self-ligating brackets and with AcceleDent, and we feel these tools can help us treat cases confidently regardless of difficulty. Clinically proven to safely and effectively accelerate tooth movement and reduce discomfort, FDA-cleared AcceleDent enables orthodontists to treat severe rotations, crossbites, blocked canines, high cuspids, and other difficult movements because of the added precision and predictability it offers.

At OP Smiles, many patients are completing treatment in 8 or 9 months, up to 50% faster than initially planned. The vibratory action of AcceleDent’s SoftPulse Technology® allows the archwires in the self-ligating bracket to be expressed more efficiently, especially those with the more complicated movements. This allows progressing through wire changes faster, yet comfortably, expediting treatment completion — something patients and doctors greatly appreciate!

We’ve encountered patients who have been previously denied aligner therapy by other orthodontists because they presented as a difficult-to-treat Class II or Class III. There are actually very few cases that can’t be treated with aligners. In fact, it’s often more appropriate to treat an open bite case with aligners because they give more vertical control than braces. With AcceleDent and a 4-day tray change protocol, nearly all aligner patients at Sellers Orthodontics complete treatment within 12 months.

Patient satisfaction is important to us, but so is quality and proficiency. We both lecture frequently at study clubs, universities, and various conferences, showing remarkable cases with results that sometimes surprise our peers. The lesson that we convey through our case studies and lectures is the importance of continuing education as well as practicing and studying clinical cases from our peers. Our treatment philosophy is to deliver quality clinical results while providing a more desirable treatment experience for patients. The clinical advantages of AcceleDent, along with the patient benefits, enable us to exceed these goals. To review our accelerated case studies that demonstrate precision and predictability when treating difficult cases, visit AcceleDent.com/orthodontists/case-studies.

Drs. Michael Mayhew and Keith T. Sellers

Michael Mayhew, DDS, MS, is a partner with Dr. Scheffler of OP Smiles in Boone, North Carolina. The first to be dual trained and board certified practicing both pediatric dentistry and orthodontics in North Carolina, Dr. Mayhew is a member of the American Association of Orthodontists, the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, and several other dental organizations.

Keith T. Sellers, DDS, MS, is the owner of Sellers Orthodontics in Charlotte, North Carolina. An Invisalign® Top 1% Provider, Dr. Sellers is a member of the Schulman Study Group, the Progressive Study Club, and the Damon Study Club. He spends 50 to 100 hours each year in continuing education and lectures several times a year to various orthodontic and dental groups. Disclosures: Dr. Mayhew serves with Ormco’s speaker bureau for national and international symposiums. Drs. Mayhew and Sellers have no financial interest in AcceleDent® and received no compensation for writing this introduction.

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