As we think back on braces we are often reminded of those awkward teen years; however, it is becoming common for orthodontists to provide care to a growing clientele: adult patients. According to the American Association of Orthodontists, between 2012 and 2014, the number of patients over 50 seeking alignment treatments increased by 16%.
It’s normal to think choosing braces later in life is purely cosmetic; however, a straighter smile can actually increase your oral health. As we age our teeth move and we suffer from bone loss in the jaw, which can alter the alignment of our bite. As our teeth move, we are prone to health issues such as tooth decay, erosion of tooth enamel, and jaw joint pain. One of the best ways to remedy these problems is to consider straightening your smile. Braces and Invisalign help correct your teeth by applying pressure to your teeth in a gradual, comfortable way.
Traditional Metal Braces
Braces have made serious strides in the last several decades, although the traditional stainless-steel braces are a great option because they are effective and affordable. These braces are fastened onto your teeth using glue and are connected by wires and rubber bands.
Typically, metal braces are used to treat severe alignment problems and remain in the mouth for about 18 months to 3 years. Most shudder at this time commitment, but for a lifetime of straight, healthy teeth, this seems like a small price to pay!
These invisible aligners are particularly attractive as they are inconspicuous and removable. Clear acrylic trays sit over your teeth, are worn 20-22 hours a day, and only should be removed for eating and brushing. With the right amount of discipline, an Invisalign treatment can take about 12 months.
Although this option is generally popular among adults, it is not recommended for children. The added responsibility of caring for the removable trays can be too much for youngsters to handle. Often Invisalign is provided to those who are looking to slightly shift their teeth and usually aren’t recommended to those looking to close large gaps between their teeth.
If you’re considering straightening your teeth and need help determining which option is best for you, please contact Lowry Main Street Dental. We are happy to help you perfect your smile!