Orthodontic treatment is commonly associated with young adolescents, often between the ages of 11 and 13. However, did you know that adults can benefit from orthodontic treatment as well? No matter what your age, crooked teeth can have a significant impact on your whole life. Not only do they affect the quality of your smile, but they can also have a significant impact on your oral and even overall health. At Sawrie Orthodontics, we provide orthodontic treatment for adults in Chattanooga, TN, helping you to achieve a healthy, beautiful smile no matter what your age.
Why Might Adults Need Orthodontic Treatment?
Just like younger patients, older teens and adults get orthodontic treatment to correct alignment issues with the teeth and the jaws. Adults may not have been able to afford orthodontic treatment when they were younger. For some adults, they may have undergone orthodontic treatment as a child, but their teeth have begun to shift out of alignment. Whatever the reason, orthodontics can help adults to achieve a healthier, more beautiful smile.
Braces for Adults
Braces are one of the most well-known orthodontic appliances. The treatment has existed for decades and is very effective. Braces use small metal brackets that are bonded to the fronts of each tooth with special dental cement. A wire then stretches across the arch of teeth, attached to each bracket with an elastic O-ring. The wires then place pressure on the teeth to widen the periodontal ligaments and move the teeth into the proper positions.
Are Braces for Adults Different Than Braces for Children?
There are some differences in treatment with braces for adults versus treatment for children. As an adult, the jawbone is fully developed and therefore harder, where the jaw of a child is still developing and therefore more malleable. Because the jaw is harder, it can take more time to move your teeth into proper alignment, lengthening the time your treatment will take. Depending on your specific situation, braces treatment may last anywhere from 18 months to 3 years.
Alternatives to Traditional Braces for Adults
Older teens and adults are not usually as willing to undergo treatment with metal braces than younger patients are. Metal braces, while effective, are highly visible in the mouth. Adults who work with clients, customers, or patients may be self-conscious with a mouth full of metal. For adults who do not want to undergo treatment with traditional metal braces, there are alternatives.
Damon Clear. Damon Clear is similar to the metal version of Damon braces. However, instead of metal brackets, the Damon Clear brackets are ceramic or clear. This makes them much more discreet. The wires are available as metal or clear, which can help to further aid in making your braces less visible.
Invisalign®. Instead of traditional braces, you may also be able to have your alignment issues corrected with Invisalign. Invisalign is a treatment that involves the use of removable clear plastic aligners as opposed to fixed brackets and wires. The aligners are completely invisible when they are placed in your mouth, and no one will be able to tell that they are there.
Just because you are an adult, that does not mean that you have to live with crooked teeth. Orthodontic treatment is just as effective for adults as it is for children. For more information, and to schedule your consultation, call Sawrie Orthodontics today at (423) 624-8217.