Sometimes adults need braces. It’s not something that adults like to think about, but it happens! Middle school students? Sure, they might need orthodontics, but an adult? You’d rather have crooked teeth than deal with metal braces, right?
After all, you’re an adult with a job, responsibilities, and other people looking at you expecting to see a mature person. Can you imagine walking into a board meeting with metal braces gleaming from your smile?
No, adults don’t like to think about wearing braces, but there are new solutions that make the entire process MUCH easier and less noticeable. We want to take some time today to discuss those options with you.
Sometimes Adults NEED Braces
Ordinarily, braces are first brought up when a child is in late elementary school or early middle school. This is a point when the baby teeth are all gone, and the adult teeth are pretty well in. It’s at this point that we realize whether or not there will be a problem, and we begin treatment on the adult teeth.
The problem is that not all kids get the care they need at this age. Or they do get the care, but they let their smile go throughout high school and college until all of that orthodontic work is gone, and their natural smile flaws have returned. In either case, you are left with an adult who need orthodontic care. Research shows that about 25% of adults are in this situation.
We Would Avoid Ugly Metal Braces, Too
Traditional metal braces are ugly. The only reason preteens get away with the appliances is that half of them are wearing the braces at the same time. Plus, it’s totally cool for a middle school student to wear colored bands on their brackets. It’s less cool for an adult to follow suite.
Fortunately for our adult patients, there are other options. You can go the traditional metal bracket and wire route if you choose, and some will need the strength of that treatment, but most do not. Let’s take a look at what else is available.
One possibility is to wear clear plastic aligners called Invisalign over a period of 12-18 months to correct the alignment of your teeth throughout your smile.
Who Prefers This Option
The number one reason patients choose Invisalign is for the nearly invisible appliances! Remember when we discussed attending a board meeting with tinsel teeth? You could attend the same meeting wearing Invisalign, and no one would even notice!
Aside from that, Invisalign is perfect for patients who dread the discomfort of metal brackets and wires. If you know the work it takes to keep those brackets clean, and the constant need for wax to repair loose wires, you will want something better. Invisalign aligners provide comfort for the soft tissues in your mouth.
We begin this process by taking quality digital images of your teeth. We use a computer system to create a roadmap of sorts for your smile. We will plan each movement of your teeth and then create aligners that correspond with that movement. You’ll receive a set of aligners to trade out every two weeks until your smile is just what you’ve been wanting!
Six Month Smiles
Another adult orthodontic option is the Six Month Smiles procedure. This uses the principles of traditional metal braces but makes the entire process much easier!
Who Can Benefit
Six Month Smiles patients are often patients who have a few minor alignment issues in their smile zone that they want corrected. For example, a patient might have a gap between two teeth or a couple of teeth that stick out too far from the rest of the smile.
These patients want their work completed very quickly with little attention drawn to their smiles. Six Month Smiles can accomplish both goals with ease!
The Six Month Smiles process is very similar to traditional braces but has key differences that make the experience much more enjoyable! Rather than using metal brackets, we will place clear plastic brackets against your teeth. We will then use tooth-colored wire to create the tension needed to move your teeth.
The entire procedure only takes about six months because we are only focusing on the teeth in your smile zone. Some treatment is over within a few months, while other smiles need more time. Whatever the time spent, it will be a fraction of the time spent wearing any other orthodontic treatment!
Your smile may benefit from orthodontics for adults. If you aren’t sure what that would look like for you, we recommend that you set up an appointment and learn more! What could it hurt?
Contact us today to set up an appointment or consultation. We would love to see you very soon!