Orthodontic Treatment for Adults

Despite what many people think, orthodontic treatment is not only for children.

Orthodontists are specially-trained dentists who bring the teeth, jaw bones and facial profile into proper alignment.

They can therefore give you a better smile and improve your dental health.

It’s never too late to correct problems such as crooked or crowded teeth, bite problems, incorrect jaw position, or jaw-joint disorders.

The biological process involved in moving teeth is the same at any age.

However treatment for adults can take a little longer than for a child.

As an adult’s facial bones are no longer growing, certain corrections may not be accomplished with braces alone and sometimes surgery is required.

However, whatever your age, it’s never too late to improve your dental health and make your smile more beautiful.

Orthodontic Treatment for Adults

 

Despite what many people think, orthodontic treatment is not only for children.

Orthodontists are specially-trained dentists who bring the teeth, jaw bones and facial profile into proper alignment.

They can therefore give you a better smile and improve your dental health.

It’s never too late to correct problems such as crooked or crowded teeth, bite problems, incorrect jaw position, or jaw-joint disorders.

The biological process involved in moving teeth is the same at any age.

However treatment for adults can take a little longer than for a child.

As an adult’s facial bones are no longer growing, certain corrections may not be accomplished with braces alone and sometimes surgery is required.

However, whatever your age, it’s never too late to improve your dental health and make your smile more beautiful.

At What Age Should I Get Orthodontic Treatment?

Some people think orthodontic treatment is only for teenagers but truth is you can get it at any age.

Your jaw is growing the quickest when your are 8 or 9 so it is usually best to expand your jaw and reshape your mouth at that age.

Permanent teeth usually come in around 12 or 13 and that is normally the best time to start full orthodontic treatment.

However some children as young as 4 start orthodontics early to avoid a problem later on.

You can get braces at any age but as you get older the treatment takes longer and hurts more.

By time you are 20, you may need surgery to expand your jaw. However, adults as old as 90 can get orthodontic treatment to fix crooked teeth.

Orthodontic treatment works best and is the least painful around ages 8 to 14 so it’s usually best to start orthodontic treatment that age.

Why Teenagers Need Braces

The idea of getting braces may at first be daunting to a teenager.

But the benefits definitely make it worthwhile.

It may be hard to believe at first but the long-term benefit is a better smile that makes you look great.

Truth is about 70% of US teenagers need braces so, if you look around your class, probably about two out of three of your friends have braces or will have them soon.

Just take a look in the mirror and decide if you like your smile.

Whatever you think now, your orthodontist will make your smile even better.

Think about how much that will boost your social life.

However, it’s not just about your smile, there are many health benefits of braces:

– You will be able to chew your food better: When teeth are not straight, you can’t chew your food correctly. This can cause an upset stomach.

– You will avoid dental problems: If you do not get orthodontic treatment when you need it, your teeth will be hard to clean and your gums will hurt.

– You may avoid developing a breathing problem: The roof of your mouth can sometimes partially block the air passages in your nose. This causes you to snore loudly and may contribute to a condition called “sleep apnea”.

Therefore braces can make a big difference to your life both now and in the future.

Solving the Problem of Bad Bite

Orthodontic treatment is used to correct a ‘bad bite’.

Bad bite – also called malocclusion – occurs when teeth are crowded or crooked.

Sometimes teeth may appear straight but, because the upper and lower jaws do not meet properly, you can have an uneven bite.

Jaw problems and teeth that are protruding, crowded or irregularly spaced can be inherited or may be caused by factors such as accidents or losing teeth prematurely.

Orthodontic treatment leads to a healthier mouth – and an important additional benefit is that it makes you look better by giving you a better smile.

When teeth are crowded or crooked, it is more difficult to clean the mouth properly.

This can lead on to tooth decay, gum disease and even loss of teeth.

When you have an improper bite, chewing and speaking can be more difficult.

This can cause abnormal wear to tooth enamel and can lead to problems with the jaws.

Orthodontic treatment can therefore lead to improvements in your health as well as making you look and feel better.

When to Take Your Child to the Orthodontist

An orthodontist is a dentist who has completed extra study in how to straighten teeth by bringing the teeth, jaw bones and facial profile into proper alignment.

The best time for a child to visit an orthodontist is between the ages of five and seven.

They are already beginning to get permanent teeth and any problems from overbite and crowding will be noticeable.

As most growth happens before age 10, it is easier to achieve the desired outcome before that age.

Even in the teenage years, results may be less effective and sometimes teeth may even need to be removed.

Visiting an orthodontist when children are younger can therefore help to ensure any possible problems are dealt with early at minimum cost and inconvenience.

Orthodontic treatment can deliver results at any age but taking action early could save money while giving your child a better smile.

Living with Braces

While modern braces can be comfortable and inconspicuous, there are some extra steps you can take in your central hygiene to look after them better.

Firstly, you need to continue brushing your teeth regularly – your dentist will show you the best approach.

You should also continue flossing daily and making regular visits to the dentist.

When you wear braces, it’s especially useful to limit any snacks between meals.

There are also some foods that your dentist may advise you to avoid such as nuts, popcorn, hard candy, chewing gum or caramel.

Some of these may interfere with braces or accidentally bend the wires.

When you wear braces, you can still enjoy sports and other leisure activities.

Your dentist may recommend a protective mouth guard to cut any risk of injury to the mouth or jaw.

When you follow good oral hygiene practices, you can continue to wear braces comfortably while making a big difference to your smile and your dental health.