Q. Whether removal of teeth for orthodontic treatment is necessary?

Answered by
Dr. Mayank Khandelwal
and medically reviewed by Dr. Infanteena Marily
This is a premium question & answer published on Mar 26, 2022

Hi doctor,

A year ago, my four teeth were extracted for braces (two uppers and two lower teeth). In the lower jaw, the teeth started moving to fill the gaps, but in the upper jaw, the teeth have not moved still and are looking ugly. Is this normal? If yes, how long will it take to move?

Thank you.



Welcome to

Orthodontic treatment is broadly divided into four phases :

1) Leveling and aligning.

2) Space closure.

3) Finishing and detailing.

4) Retention.

As you mentioned about four teeth getting extracted, it is a normal procedure followed worldwide for certain cases. Leveling and aligning depend on how much crowding is present in both arches and how much movement will be required in both of them to get a well-aligned arch. If they are not aligned and space closure is initiated, it tends to result in an unesthetic appearance, and management in later stages becomes difficult. In your case, uppers might have had more crowding than lowers and more discrepancy in levels, hence longer alignment time.

The lower arch tends to move faster and shows space closure much earlier than the upper arch due to certain factors like bone composition, food eating habits, etc. In lower, leveling and aligning would have been finished, and hence space closure would have been started by the doctor, while in upper, it would still require some more alignment before beginning the space closure, hence the delay. If you see the upper front teeth well aligned at the same level and following a gentle curve as they go back, stay rest assured. Alignment is almost over, and soon, space closure will be initiated. Generally, it takes about 18 to 20 months for cases with four teeth extraction to complete.

Hence, based on the details provided, you are going on the right track; soon, space closure should be initiated.

Do reach out for further information and clarifications. Regards.

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