Orthodontic treatment and braces are not just for kids.
It’s not only children who want a better smile.
Most adults get orthodontic treatment because they know that your smile is one of your most important features.
As you get older you want to keep a smile that makes you look good rather than haggard.
The fact is that many people did not get braces when they were young.
That may be because their parents could not afford it at the time or that their teeth could not be fixed with the techniques then available.
Now they may have problems with their teeth and gums or perhaps they get indigestion a lot or maybe they are just unhappy with their smile.
Now they have the money and the treatment they need is available so they are going to take advantage.
There are also many people who did have orthodontic treatment when they were younger but did not get the full benefits as they stopped wearing their retainers.
Even after wearing braces, their teeth may still be crooked.
Now up to a quarter of orthodontic treatment is on adult patients.
Orthodontic treatment goes slower when you are older, and it feels different.
But people as old as 90 are getting braces.
It’s never too late to take care of yourself and have a great smile.
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.
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.
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.
Crowded or crooked teeth known as malocclusion not only spoil your smile, they also increase your risk of dental health problems.
Corrective procedures and appliances such as braces straighten teeth and correct jaw alignment.
Malocclusions are often noticed around ages 6 12, when the adult teeth begin to erupt.
The process of straightening out teeth, known as orthodontic treatment, often begins between ages 8 and 14. The best results are obtained when a child begins treatment while they are still growing.
This means its a good idea for a child to have an orthodontic evaluation by age 7. At this stage, they have a mix of baby teeth and adult teeth.
Its possible for braces to work later and even in adults but there are many advantages in starting as soon as possible.
Your dentist will be able to spot problems with emerging teeth and jaw growth early on, while the primary teeth are present.
Thats why regular dental examinations are important.
For adults, its not too late to correct problems such as crooked or crowded teeth, overbites, underbites, incorrect jaw position or jaw-joint disorders. The biological process involved in moving teeth is the same at any age.
The difference is that adult treatment takes a little longer than a child’s treatment. As an adult’s facial bones are no longer growing, certain corrections may not be accomplished with braces alone.
But, whatever your age, it’s never too late to improve your dental health and improve your smile.
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.
Here are the answers to some common questions about what it like to have braces
What is it like having braces?,
When you have braces, you will probably find your mouth sore for a few days. It can also be uncomfortable when the braces are tightened. However, most of the time you probably won’t even notice them.
Do braces hurt?
It can depend on which type you choose but usually modern braces will not hurt except for the first few days or when they are tightened.
While the manufacturers are always looking for ways to make them more comfortable, a little discomfort at the beginning is still common. You will be able to take some painkillers if necessary. The pain may be greater if you start orthodontic treatment when you are an adult.
Will it be embarrassing to wear braces?
Over 70% of teenagers wear braces and therefore most people have some experience of them so there is no need to feel embarrassed. If you start treatment when you are an adult, the proportion of people wearing braces is lower but you will still find most people supportive.
Will braces cause sores in my mouth?
Sometimes you might experience sores on your lips in the first few days. These can easily be rinsed in water or special solution and will usually heal within a week or so. You can also put wax on the braces to prevent the braces from rubbing and irritating the sore.
How long does orthodontic treatment take?
It varies a lot depending on exactly what changes need to happen in your mouth. When started young it may last a few months. From the age of 12, it can take a year or two and perhaps more for adults. However it depends very much on your personal situation and your orthodontists will be able to advise you.