Sea Girt, NJ — With the abundance of new developments in modern orthodontics, Dr. Patrick Cuozzo and his New Jersey orthodontics practice say treatment is becoming more and more accessible to patients looking for a straighter, more brilliant smile. However, as treatment options continue to emerge, Dr. Cuozzo says the need to find a suitable individualized plan for each patient also rises, demanding a thorough diagnostic screening and the application of a proper time schedule. He says even though a patient’s age has less impact on the range of treatments available today, beginning an orthodontic procedure such as Invisalign® or braces at the correct age can ensure the desired outcome is achieved in less time.
According to the American Association of Orthodontists (AAO), most orthodontic treatment begins between the ages of 9 and 14 and typically lasts from one to three years. While no detailed statistics exist to correlate the length of treatment with the age at which treatment began, Dr. Cuozzo says achieving the best results in the shortest period of time comes from conducting an orthodontic assessment on children as early as possible. Backed by the AAO, he recommends having children screened no later than age 7 to help determine what the best age for treatment is based on the individual’s needs and predicted growth. While in some situations such as underbite treatment can be most effective when started early, Dr. Cuozzo says other conditions like a protruding overbite are better to wait in order to avoid the need for a second stage of procedures. Finding the right course of action, he says, depends on a detailed consultation with an experienced orthodontist.
As recent advancements have made orthodontic procedures more effective and discreet than their bulky, metal predecessors, Dr. Cuozzo says he has also seen a growing number of adults at his practice requesting a straighter smile. The AAO reports that there was a 37% increase in the number of adult braces performed from 1994 to 2004, and that currently more than 20% of orthodontic patients (over 1 million people) are adults. Despite their later treatment, Dr. Cuozzo says adult orthodontics has become a popular and successful avenue for patients looking to correct misaligned teeth through one of the innovative procedures now available. In these situations, he adds that achieving effective results relies upon the orthodontist’s ability to correctly identify and execute a treatment plan that will accommodate the patient’s stage of life and dental development.
Dr. Cuozzo says his practice’s treatment philosophy has always been founded on the principle that timing is everything in orthodontics. He says choosing a practice that recognizes the importance of treating each patient according to their individual needs and goals is essential for attaining a straighter, more aesthetic smile. Whether patients are looking for traditional braces or clear aligners like Invisalign®, Dr. Cuozzo recommends conducting extensive research and consulting with a board-certified orthodontist before settling on any treatment.
About Patrick T. Cuozzo, DDS, PA
Dr. Patrick Cuozzo is a graduate of the University of Maryland Dental School and earned his Certificate of Specialty at the University of Pennsylvania School of Dental Medicine, where he now serves as an associate professor on the orthodontics faculty. Board-certified in orthodontics, he is a professor of the American Board of Orthodontics and a member of the American Dental Association, the New Jersey Association of Orthodontists, and the American Association of Orthodontists. Dr. Cuozzo has earned several recognitions as one of New Jersey’s Top 10 Orthodontic Specialists and has been selected multiple times to the Guide to America’s Top dentists.
Cuozzo Orthodontic Specialists has two locations at 4 Swimming River Road in Lincroft, NJ, reachable at (732) 747-3466, and 548 Washington Blvd in Sea Girt, NJ, reachable at (732) 449-5444. It can also be contacted online via the website 4straightteeth.com or the Cuozzo Orthodontic Specialists Facebook page.