6 Facts About Two-Phase Orthodontic Treatment Parents Should Know

Reasons why your child’s classmate may already be in treatment

Problems that will eventually need orthodontic attention can become obvious long before a child has all of their permanent teeth. Depending on the type of problem a child has, an orthodontist may recommend two-phase treatment. This means that treatment is done at two different times, often to take advantage of predictable stages of dental development and physical growth. In most cases, working with a child’s natural growth and development at different stages will ensure positive outcomes.

Here are six things parents should know about two-phase orthodontic treatment:

1. Two-phase orthodontic treatment is for kids, but it’s not for all kids.

Most orthodontic problems can be treated in one phase of comprehensive treatment, however there are a few exceptions depending on the child’s bite, jaw growth, and alignment.

2. Two-phase orthodontic treatment can be used to:

  • Help the jaws develop to ensure adequate space for all of the permanent teeth, especially the permanent canines.
  • Reduce the need to pull permanent teeth in the future.
  • Treat issues in a growing child that may require corrective surgery if treatment occurs after growth ends.
  • Normalize the relationship of the upper jaw to the lower jaw, especially in the case of an underbite.
  • Intervene in a child’s prolonged sucking or abnormal swallowing habits.
  • Correct damaging pressure can move teeth in the wrong directions and/or change the shape of the bone that supports teeth.
  • Tuck in upper front teeth that stick out to reduce the risk of those teeth being broken or knocked out. 

3. Moving baby teeth is not done for the sake of their appearance.

While baby teeth can move during Phase One orthodontic treatment, their movement is part of the process to ensure sufficient space for permanent teeth. It is completely safe and effective to move baby teeth in many situations.

4. Phase One of a two-phase orthodontic treatment begins when a child still has some baby teeth.

If an appliance is used in Phase One care, it could be a form of braces, a fixed appliance, or a removable appliance. These appliances can be placed on baby teeth with no issues. The type of appliance used depends on the needs of the individual patient. Some children may need to have baby teeth removed to clear a path for the permanent teeth to erupt.

5. A resting period follows Phase One orthodontic treatment.

After the child completes their Phase One treatment, there is a waiting period that could last months to years for most patients as we watch their eruption and growth prior to them being ready for a second phase.

6. Phase Two of orthodontic treatment usually begins when most or all of permanent teeth are in.

The goal of Phase Two treatment is to make sure teeth are in their proper places for good function, a healthy bite, and a pleasing appearance. Give your child the best chance at a healthy, beautiful smile by following the American Association of recommendation that all children have their first check-up with an orthodontist no later than age 7. If an orthodontic problem is developing, the orthodontist will be able to monitor growth and development so that your child can have the most appropriate treatment at the most appropriate time. At Cooney Orthodontics, we cherish your time and your child’s dental health. We will never suggest a two-phase treatment unless it is necessary and valuable.

What To Expect On My First Orthodontist Visit

Your initial appointment with us is meant to be a very pleasant and informative experience. You will meet with one of our friendly New Patient Coordinators who will actively listen you your concerns and hopes. They will then take of a full series of digital photographs and any digital x-rays as needed.

You will receive a thorough clinical examination by either of our highly qualified orthodontists, Dr. Cooney and Dr. Tyner. A full discussion and explanation of our findings, treatment options and alternatives will be presented. You can be confident we will be honest and understanding regarding your treatment recommendations, answering any questions you may have.

This appointment takes approximately one hour and is provided at no cost to you. During the initial examination for each patient we will cover the basics of orthodontic treatment, explaining your process step by step.  Members of our staff will be also able to discuss scheduling and financial arrangements with you.

Taking the choice to get the beautiful and healthy smile you deserve is a lifetime decision. Our practice believes that financial considerations should not be an obstacle to obtaining the highest quality orthodontic treatment.

This is why at your initial appointment, before beginning your treatment, we’ll discuss treatment fees, insurance coverage, and financial arrangements in detail. We utilize OrthoFi technology to offer customizable payment options that allow our patients to find a plan that works within their budget.

With OrthoFi you can:

  • Choose the best treatment option for your family
  • Design your own payment plan to fit your budget
  • Adjust the down payment you are comfortable with
  • View your payment plan details on your time

We are not a direct participator with insurance companies, though we do accept assignment of benefits if they are available through your plan. We offer many financial options in addition to any insurance assignment benefit, including lower down payments and flexible payment choices.

At Cooney Orthodontics, we are dedicated to offering our patients the best service and care to ensure they feel right at home starting with their first visit. We look forward to meeting you soon!

Will Orthodontic Treatment Cause White Marks on my Teeth? Prevention Tips

The most important thing to know about white marks on teeth is that they DO NOT occur with every orthodontic case and are easily preventable through proper oral hygiene.

Here are four simple steps for prevention:

  1. Brush above and below your brackets or attachments 3-4 times a day, including after each meal or snack whether at school, work or home. Using a fluoride toothpaste helps to keep enamel strong.
  2. Floss at least once a day.            
  3. Avoid or limit acidic foods and drinks including soda, flavored waters with carbonation, sweet and iced tea, juices, sports drinks etc.  for the duration of your treatment.
  4. See your dentist every 6 months for your check up, or more often if it’s recommended.
Proper Oral Hygiene versus Poor Oral Hygiene

A White Mark Is Permanent

A white mark on a tooth – known as decalcification – is like a scar on the tooth surface and is the very beginning of a cavity. As plaque builds up in the mouth, calcium and other minerals leach out tooth enamel and leave a permanent white mark behind. If plaque is continually left behind, the area turns into a cavity. Plaque is made of bacteria, food particles, and saliva. It feeds on sugars and then forms an acid that damages teeth. Poor brushing, frequent snacking and intake of sugary and/or acidic beverages contribute to white marks and decay. The reason some people get white squares on their teeth after braces is because the part of their tooth that is covered by the bracket is protected from plaque and acid. Though, the parts around the brace are susceptible to plaque buildup if not brushed properly leaving the white scaring around the outside of the bracket.

Decalcification Can Happen to Patients Using Invisalign

Patients who drink flavored waters, seltzers, sports drinks, soda, or anything besides plain water with their aligners in puts them at high risk for developing these scars. While the aligners are in, the sugars and acids are held against the tooth surface where the saliva cannot reach them to neutralize the acid and buffer the sugars. Decalcification can also happen if patients do not brush their teeth after meals or brush their aligners nightly, causing food and bacteria left in the aligners to sit on the teeth and break down the enamel.

Decalcification Can Happen Independent of Orthodontic Treatment

Some people get white marks on their teeth without ever having orthodontic treatment. The marks are caused by too much soda, Gatorade, or other acidic drinks, along with poor brushing habits.

For A Happy Ending

Patients who are conscientious about caring for their teeth and who limit sugary, acidic foods and drinks should not develop white marks. Keeping your teeth clean is not hard, it just may be a little time consuming. Your dental health takes a commitment to putting in a little extra time and using the right tools for the job. Our staff is always happy to demonstrate proper techniques or answer any questions regarding caring for your oral health.

Interested in orthodontic treatment? Schedule a consultation today!

April 2021 Newsletter

Happy Spring!

Spring is all about renewal – making this the best time to refresh your look with a new Cooney Orthodontics smile! Schedule a complementary consultation today!

Spring into a new smile by scheduling your complimentary consultation with the only top 1% Diamond Plus Invisalign Provider in the Capital Region! (4)

Cooney Orthodontics teams up with HVCC!

This past month we were proud to host students from Hudson Valley Community College’s Dental Hygiene Program. All of our Hygienists have graduated from this prestigious program and we were happy to provide a place of learning for them in our office. We wish them all good luck on all their future endeavors!

invisalign specialists holding sign in albany ny

Happy National Dental Hygienist Week!

April 4th to April 10th is National Dental Hygienists Week! Thank you to all the talented Hygienists on our team!

Copy of DHW

Orthodontics Trivia


Click to view the answer

orthodontist in albany ny

Celebrating 18 years!

Donna is celebrating 18 years at Cooney Orthodontics on April 21st! Congratulations! 

October 2020 Newsletter

Hi Friends,
We hope everyone’s been having a great first couple weeks back at school, whether you’re learning from home or on campus! While Halloween is this month, it’s also National Orthodontic Health Month, a time to celebrate healthy smiles and learn about the importance of oral health!

Be Mindful This Halloween!

Make sure to consider the kind of candy you’re eating this Halloween! Here is a list of candy that is safe for braces and candy that isn’t safe! 

Did you know the orthodontists at Cooney Orthodontics are the top Invisalign providers in the Capital Region? We believe in creating happy, healthy smiles that last a lifetime no matter what age you decide to start! Schedule a complementary consultation today!

Breast Cancer Awareness Month!

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, so don’t forget to show your support for the nearly 4 million survivors in the US and spread awareness by wearing pink!⁠

October Birthdays!

This October, we’re celebrating the birthdays of Dr. Tyner and
our Dental Hygienists, Shelby & Jocelynn! May their birthday be the start of a year filled with plenty of smiles!

Happy One Year, Dr. Tyner!

Dr. Tyner is celebrating one year at Cooney Orthodontics! We’re so excited to have him on our team and can’t wait to see what the future holds!

Review our Ballston Lake and Troy location on Google, Yelp, and Facebook!

November 2020 Newsletter

It’s un-be-leaf-able that the holiday season is already upon us! This month, we’re extra thankful for all of our patients, staff and doctors.

Help Us Support Toys for Tots!

The annual Toys for Tots collection at Cooney Orthodontics will be held from November 2nd to December 17th. Bring new, unwrapped toys to either of our offices for a chance to win a Amazon gift card!

There are six gift cards up for grabs and multiple toys = multiple entries! Make sure you’re in the running to win by helping a great cause!

Team News

November 16th
Appointment Coordinator, Jen M, is celebrating 22 years at Cooney Orthodontics!

November 16th
Appointment Coordinator, Jen M, is celebrating 22 years at Cooney Orthodontics!

We’re Now an Invisalign VIP Diamond Plus Provider
They say diamonds are a smile’s best friend. We’re now the only Invisalign Diamond Plus Provider in the Capital Region!

Schedule a complimentary screening today!

December 2020 Newsletter

A Cooney Orthodontics Holiday Greeting!

As Charlie Brown famously said, “It’s not what’s under the tree that matters, it’s who’s around it.”

Although you may be celebrating differently this year, we hope you and your family enjoy the holiday season and stay safe!

Get Your Smile In The End Zone in 2021

Choose the top Invisalign team in the Capital Region! See our team in action in the video below. 

The last day to support Toys for Tots is 12/17!

The last day to support our annual Toys for Tots toy collection at Cooney Orthodontics is December 17th. Don’t forget to bring in a new, unwrapped toys to either of our offices for a chance to win a Amazon gift card!

There are six gift cards up for grabs and multiple toys = multiple entries! Make sure you’re in the running to win by helping a great cause!

Team News

December 7th
Happy Birthday to our Orthodontic Assistant, Cassie!

Welcome Amber!
Amber joined the team in November, 2020. She was born and raised in Hudson Falls, NY. Amber is a graduate of Hudson Falls High School and Hudson Valley Community College with a degree in Dental Hygiene. In her free time Amber enjoys line dancing, horseback riding, attending country concerts and spending as much time as possible with her three dogs, friends and family.

Orthodontics Trivia

Click here for the answer!

We’re Now an Invisalign VIP Diamond Plus Provider
They say diamonds are a smile’s best friend. We’re now the only Invisalign Diamond Plus Provider in the Capital Region!

Schedule a complimentary screening today!