Many adults do not realize that braces are, in fact, a viable option if you are looking to fix your teeth after your teenage years. Yes, many people go through the process of braces earlier in life, but there are many valid reasons to get braces as an adult too! Braces help contribute to higher self-esteem and confidence and solve many health issues that you may not realize are connected to your orthodontic health. If you are an adult that is debating braces treatment, read on to learn more about what this process entails and if you are a candidate for braces.
Are Braces An Option For Me?
Braces can be used to solve several different orthodontic issues. Whether you are interested in treatment for aesthetics or to address a specific health issue, braces should be able to get the job done! Many health problems such as chronic jaw pain, TMJ, earaches, difficulty chewing, and bone erosion can all be attributed to improper tooth and jaw alignment.
Investing in braces to treat these issues is guaranteed to give you a better quality of life for years to come. By treating the root cause of health problems, you can save tons of time and money from band-aid treatments down the road. Since braces perfectly straighten your teeth, it is easier to clean all parts of the tooth and maintain a high dental hygiene level. This cuts down on plaque buildup, which lowers the risk of cavities, tooth decay, and gum disease. Lastly, braces offer a huge confidence boost! Forget smiling with your mouth closed or covering your mouth when you laugh because braces will leave you with a beautifully straight smile that you will never feel self-conscious showing off.
Types of Braces
We offer two types of braces at our practice: traditional metal braces and Iconix aesthetic braces. Both kinds of braces work in a similar manner but differ in their appearance. Based on your preferences, you and your doctor can discuss which option is better for you.
Traditional metal braces use metal brackets glued to the front of the teeth and connected with metal wires to pull the teeth and jaw into the desired position. These are the kinds of braces that your parents wore, and they are still used today because they consistently yield great results! You will need to return to the orthodontist every 4-6 weeks for manual tightenings to ensure that your teeth are continually being moved into the proper spot.
Iconix aesthetic braces essentially work the same way as traditional braces and will still require you to return to the practice for manual tightenings. This kind of braces offers a less obvious appearance by using gold or champagne-colored stainless steel brackets. These brackets mimic the teeth’ natural color, so many people will not realize that you are undergoing treatment unless they are standing very near to you. Our adult patients typically prefer Iconix braces because of their inconspicuous look while still being able to work as efficiently as regular, traditional braces.
How Long Does Treatment Last?
The duration of treatment varies from person to person depending on what specific issues you are trying to fix, the pace at which your teeth move, and how well you follow your orthodontist’s instructions. On average, braces are worn for about two years, but this period can be shortened or lengthened due to any of the reasons mentioned above.
Taking Care of Your Braces
Taking good care of your braces is very important in making sure that they work properly and quickly. The better you care for your braces and dental hygiene, the better your results will be. One lifestyle change you will need to make during treatment is avoiding hard, crunchy, chewy, or sticky foods, as these have the potential to damage or break your braces. This can lead to painful metal poking you, brackets falling off the tooth, and an emergency visit to your orthodontist—we recommend simply leaving these treats to be enjoyed after you complete your treatment.
Another thing to keep in mind is that braces brackets can act as magnets for plaque and other nasty buildups. It is important to take a few extra minutes each day during brushing and use the orthodontist’s special flossers to clean out every nook and cranny regularly.
How Much Do Braces Cost?
Just as the duration of treatment varies according to your diagnosis, the cost of braces does too. If your braces are only needed for cosmetic reasons, they may be cheaper than braces used to fix serious jaw misalignment. To get a better idea of the cost of your braces, we welcome you to stop by our practice for an examination and price estimate.