Orthodontic treatment is not just for teenagers. In fact, more and more adults are seeking out orthodontic treatment to correct misaligned teeth and improve their overall oral health. If you’re an adult considering orthodontic treatment, here are some recent positive statistics and information about how it can help you achieve a healthy, beautiful, and confident smile.
Despite the numerous benefits of orthodontic treatment, many adults still hesitate to seek this treatment due to concerns about the appearance of braces or other orthodontic devices. However, advances in technology have made it possible to undergo orthodontic treatment for adults without worrying about the appearance of braces, with options such as clear braces and invisible aligners available.
Invisalign, for example, is a popular orthodontic treatment option that uses clear aligners to straighten teeth gradually and is nearly invisible when worn. These options allow adults to achieve the benefits of orthodontic treatment without the concern of visible braces, making it easier for them to feel confident and comfortable throughout the treatment process.
According to the American Association of Orthodontists (AAO), the number of adults looking into orthodontic treatment for adults has increased by over 200% in the last two decades. This trend is likely due in part to the advancements in orthodontic technology, which have made treatment more comfortable and efficient for adults.
But why are more adults seeking out orthodontic treatment? For many, it’s about more than just aesthetics. Misaligned teeth can lead to many oral health issues, including difficulty brushing and flossing, leading to tooth decay and gum disease. Adult orthodontic treatment can help correct these issues and improve oral health.
In addition to improving oral health, orthodontic treatment can boost self-esteem and confidence. A beautiful, healthy smile can make a big difference in how we feel about ourselves and interact with others.
So, what can you expect if you undergo orthodontic treatment for adults? The process will depend on your specific needs and the treatment plan recommended by your orthodontist. In general, the process involves:
- Free consultation: During this appointment, your orthodontist will examine your teeth and discuss your treatment options. They may take X-rays, photos, and impressions of your teeth to create a detailed treatment plan.
- Treatment: The treatment length will depend on your case’s complexity and the type of treatment you choose. Invisalign treatment typically takes about 12-18 months, while traditional metal braces may take longer. Your orthodontist will provide instructions on how to care for your teeth and aligners, and you’ll have regular check-ups to monitor your progress.
- Retention: After your treatment is complete, you’ll need to wear a retainer to maintain the results of your treatment. This is typically a clear plastic or wire appliance that fits over your teeth and helps to hold them in their new position.
Orthodontic treatment for adults can be customized to fit your needs and preferences. In addition to traditional metal braces and clear aligners like Invisalign, there are also options like lingual braces (braces that are placed on the back of the teeth), ceramic braces (tooth-colored braces), and self-ligating braces (braces that use a slide mechanism instead of elastic bands). Your orthodontist will help you choose the best option for your specific needs and goals.
Orthodontic treatment is often more affordable than you might think. Many dental insurance plans cover a portion of orthodontic treatment, and many orthodontists offer flexible payment options to make treatment more accessible.
Orthodontic treatment for adults can be completed at any age. While it’s generally easier to correct misaligned teeth when younger (because the bones are still growing and the teeth are more malleable), it’s never too late to benefit from orthodontic treatment. Some adults may have better results with treatment because their bones and teeth are fully developed.
Choosing a qualified and experienced orthodontist is important if you’re considering orthodontic treatment. Look for an orthodontist member of the AAO and ask about their training and experience.
Overall, orthodontic treatment can be a great option for adults looking to improve their oral health, self-esteem, and confidence. With the advancements in orthodontic technology, treatment is more comfortable and efficient than ever. If you’re considering orthodontic treatment for adults, consult a qualified orthodontist to discuss your options and determine the best course of treatment for you.