When many people think of braces, they think of preteens and teenagers who have a colorful display of brackets and wires in their mouth. It’s rare to see someone in their 20s, 30s, or older who is undergoing orthodontic treatment. But does that mean you shouldn’t get adult braces or that they aren’t really necessary? Let’s talk about how even grown-ups can benefit from getting their teeth straightened.
How Adult Braces Help Your Smile
Just because you had braces as a kid doesn’t mean you’ll never need them again. That’s due to the fact that teeth tend to shift a bit throughout the years, especially if you lose a tooth or didn’t wear your retainer as much as you should have. Braces can get those pearly whites back where they belong, leading to easier oral hygiene, a well-aligned bite, and a more attractive smile.
Even if you’ve never had braces, it’s not too late to correct the alignment issues in your mouth. Shifting crooked teeth into place can protect them from premature wear and tear and help you project a more professional image.
Straight Teeth and Your Overall Health
Diet and exercise are cornerstones of good overall health, but did you know that your dental health also plays an important role in keeping your body well from top to toe? Here are a few examples of how this is so:
- Because straight teeth are easier to clean, they reduce the risk that harmful bacteria will wreak havoc in your mouth. Therefore, you’ll have a better chance of preventing tooth decay and gum disease. Fighting gum disease is particularly important; it has been associated with some severe health conditions, including cardiovascular disease and dementia.
- An attractive smile can help out your mental wellness. When you’re confident about the way your teeth look, you may be less self-conscious in social situations and project a friendlier, more approachable image.
- You may experience fewer headaches. Tooth and jaw misalignment can place extra stress on your jaw and facial muscles, which can translate into head and neck pain. Correcting such alignment issues can help your orofacial structures relax.
Options for Adult Braces
If you need braces, you won’t necessarily be stuck with traditional ones made of metal wires and brackets. You might ask your orthodontist about lingual braces, which are invisible to the outside world because they’re placed on the backs of your teeth. Or, you may be a candidate for ceramic braces, which have a subtler appearance than their traditional counterparts. Many adults choose clear plastic aligners, such as Invisalign or ClearCorrect, to get their teeth into place.
Think you’re too old for braces? Think again. No matter what your age, orthodontic treatment may be able to do wonders for your oral and overall wellness.
About the Author
Dr. James Hart has been practicing orthodontics since 1978. Dr. Hart’s extensive experience and dedication to helping his patients achieve better health enable him to provide excellent service to the Cleburne community. If you believe you may be able to benefit from adult braces, contact our office at 817-645-2432.