Orthodontic treatment is no longer just for teens. In fact, the American Association of Orthodontists cites that one in five orthodontic patients is over the age of 21. Many adults are choosing to receive treatment because they understand the importance of maintaining their health, and they want to feel better about their appearance. Adults everywhere are taking advantage of the opportunity to receive orthodontic care and now you can too.
Common reasons why adults are considering orthodontic treatment:
- A bad bite or malocclusion, causing teeth to fit together incorrectly
- Teeth that are crowded or spaced apart, possibly causing tooth decay or gum disease
- Abnormal jaw pain or pressure, that is caused by crooked teeth
- Desire for a healthier, happy new smile
Treatment options for adults
For many adults, the thought of having metal braces is enough to discourage them from receiving treatment. However, today's orthodontic treatment options offer a variety of braces and appliances that are comfortable, aesthetic, and customised to meet your needs. Types of braces include:
- Clear braces
- Ceramic braces
- Self-ligating braces
- Lingual (behind the teeth) braces
- Invisible braces
- Traditional metal braces
The difference between orthodontics for adults and for children and teens:
The main difference between treating adults, compared with children and teens, is that in younger patients the jawbones are still developing. For adults, these bones have stopped growing, which may mean the possibility of orthognathic surgery, if it is necessary to re-align the jawbones. Other differences include:
- Possible gum, or bone loss (periodontal disease) — Adults are more likely than children to have experienced gum recession, or even bone loss, due to gingivitis, or advanced periodontal disease. Patients with straighter teeth are less likely to get gum disease.
- Worn or missing teeth — Over time, teeth can become worn down and shift into different positions, that can only be corrected with orthodontic care. Missing teeth can cause other teeth to shift and tilt, creating a bad bite and increasing the possibility of gum disease.
- Incomplete orthodontic treatment as a teen — Many adults received some orthodontic treatment as a child or teen, but never completed their treatment. As an adult, they choose to complete their orthodontic treatment, to achieve a healthy, happy, new smile.
Our practice recognises that adults and children have different needs, and require a different level of attention and care. We will work with you to ensure that you receive the most appropriate treatments and that your needs are met, with understanding and respect from us.
Why should you consider orthodontic treatment?
- Straight teeth are healthy teeth — Teeth that are properly aligned not only can provide a healthy, functional bite and a happy smile, but they are easier to keep clean with flossing and brushing, and this may help prevent other health problems.
- Mouths left untreated can get worse — Not receiving orthodontic treatment when it's needed, can result in a worsening of the long-term health and bite problems. Later, these can become more difficult to treat, costing you more in the end.
To learn more about the benefits of adult orthodontics, please contact our practice to schedule an appointment. We understand that you have a busy schedule and we will work with you, to make sure each office visit is as convenient as possible.