Accelerated Orthodontic Treatment

In our increasingly informed and aware society, the need for orthodontic treatment has been growing. Today not only children but a large number of adults are seeking orthodontic treatment to enhance the social and psychological status of their life. With an increase in age of our patients, there is also an increase in the demand for faster and more efficient orthodontic treatment. While technological developments provide materials and appliances that can produce more efficient treatment, the speed of treatment is still controlled with biological response. Recently, researchers from the Consortium for Translational Orthodontic Research (CTOR) at New York University College of Dentistry, were able to develop a technique to increase the rate of tooth movement, applying the same biological principles activated during fracture healing (8,3,4). In response to injury our bone activates a repair mechanism that removes the injured bone and builds a new bone. During this process, osteoclasts (cells that resorb bone) are activated and for a short period of time bone density decreases around the area of the fracture site. The osteoclast response is followed by activation of osteoblasts that will create a new bone with normal density (2,3,4). Taking advantage of this bone repair mechanism, NYU researchers developed a methodology, called osteoperforation to accelerate tooth movement. During osteoperforation, small holes are created in the alveolar bone adjacent to the teeth that need to be moved, under local anesthesia, without the need for any tissue flap. This method moves teeth at least twice as fast as the normal rate, both in animals and human studies were able to increase (8).