As a result of the recent advancements being made in orthodontic treatments and technology, more adults are seeking treatment for orthodontic conditions. In this blog, our Antigonish dentists talk about adult braces and other treatment options that may be available.
Why Adults May Need Orthodontic Treatment
Improperly positioned or crowded teeth can cause a wide variety of oral health issues.
This could impact speech and jaw function. It might even result in uneven wear on your teeth. Misaligned teeth may also affect oral hygiene because teeth that are aligned properly are relatively easy to clean with routine flossing and brushing.
However, a misalignment could make teeth overlap, making food bacteria and debris get caught in areas that floss or a toothbrush can’t reach easily. This may lead to tooth decay and eventual gum disease.
Aesthetically, misaligned teeth may cause cosmetic issues and feelings of insecurity in appearance – causing some people to avoid activities such as public speaking or smiling for family pictures, or even eating in public.
As you can believe, these problems could impact the quality of your life, so orthodontic treatment could be very beneficial.
Low Profile Options for Adult Orthodontic Treatments
One reason adults often give for not seeking orthodontic treatment is that they are concerned about the aesthetics or appearance of braces. Fortunately, dental and orthodontic technology has come a long way.
Many convenient and discreet orthodontic treatment options are available for adult patients to choose from, depending on their needs. Each of these options has its advantages and disadvantages.
Some patients may be candidates for clear aligners – clear, custom-made plastic aligners that are difficult for the average observer to tell that you’re wearing. They gradually move the teeth into prescribed positions with gentle, continual pressure over the course of treatment - without the need for metal brackets or wires.
A major benefit of clear aligners is that you can remove them to eat, drink, brush your teeth, and floss as normal. And because of their transparency and convenience, you can wear them to work, out with your friends, or at events and people will be hard-pressed to see them on you. They fit comfortably into the daily lives of many patients.
But, you’ll have to wear your clear aligners for 22 hours every day in order to have the most successful treatment possible, and this requires a high level of self-discipline. You also have to remember to change your sets of aligners as prescribed and schedule your meal times.
Thanks to advancements in orthodontic technology, adult braces have become a more viable option for those who may not be candidates for clear aligners, or who may prefer braces.
Metal braces are now less obtrusive and much more comfortable than they once were due to improvements in design. Consisting of brackets, wires, and elastic bands, the parts work together to apply calibrated force to your teeth, gradually shifting them over time.
Braces can be used to treat either complex or simple malocclusion and misalignment issues. They are fixed appliances, so while you can’t take them out to brush, floss, eat or drink, you also won’t have to worry about timing your meals and snack times, or forgetting to switch your aligners or put them back in.
Are you worried about the costs of clear aligners, adult braces, or other orthodontic treatment methods? Don't hesitate to speak to your dentist about these concerns, they might have payment plans or financing options available to you.