Many people tend to associate orthodontics with teenagers in braces so not everyone realizes that treatment can have a multitude of benefits for patients of all ages, including adults. However, many adults still wonder “Am I too old for braces?” We’ve seen more and more adults in recent years who are looking to transform their smile and correct issues they’ve been struggling with for years. If you’ve been unhappy or self-conscious about how your teeth look or function, Decatur Orthodontics is here to help!
Dr. Francis and the rest of our talented team are proud to offer our patients a variety of treatment options to correct problems like crooked teeth, overbites, underbites, incorrect jaw positioning, and more. Let’s take a closer look at what orthodontics is, what treatment options are available for adult patients, and how Decatur Orthodontics can help you achieve the smile you’ve always wanted. Keep reading to learn more!
What is orthodontics?
Orthodontics is a dental specialty, which means an orthodontist is a dentist who has also received years of additional education and training in:
- identifying and correcting bite abnormalities
- successfully straightening teeth
- correcting misaligned jaws
- and improving the overall function of the mouth.
An experienced orthodontist will work with their patients to diagnose, prevent, and treat dental and facial abnormalities. If issues such as these are left untreated over time, they can eventually lead to premature wear and tear on the teeth, gum tissue, and bone. This can lead to pain in the face and neck area, headaches, and even difficulties with chewing or speaking. A good orthodontist will be able to diagnose and treat these types of issues, which will improve both the function and appearance of your smile.
Why are more adults now looking into orthodontic treatment?
Everyone has their reasons for exploring orthodontic treatment as an option. For one thing, we often gain a better understanding of how our oral health is linked to our total body health as we get older. This knowledge can lead some people to seek out dental or orthodontic treatment that will allow them to take better care of their teeth and gums.
Many adult patients have also received orthodontic treatment earlier in life that was never completed, and now wish to finish the process. Touch-up treatment is extremely common, as well. Teeth that were straightened in a patient’s younger years can shift over time due to age, genetics, or improper retainer use. In these cases, there are multiple treatment options available, including monitoring the teeth, providing new retainers, or re-treating with braces or aligners.
Some adults have never had treatment before, but are simply looking to improve the cosmetic appearance of their smile. This can boost their confidence and self-esteem, and may even have a positive impact on their personal and professional lives. We fully support any reason you may have for looking into orthodontic treatment for yourself!
What treatment options are available for adult patients?
Whatever your reasons for reaching out to an orthodontist, there are more treatment options available to you than ever before! Decatur Orthodontics offers the following treatments for a total smile transformation.
Traditional metal braces are an orthodontic staple and with good reason! This is one of our most efficient treatments, particularly for more severe or complicated cases. Modern braces use high-quality stainless steel, but innovations in the design mean they’re much more comfortable than previous versions. The total treatment time also tends to be shorter than it used to be.
These function in much the same way traditional braces do but use ceramic brackets instead of metal ones. The brackets can be clear, white, or tooth-colored, and for an almost invisible treatment option, can be used with elastics or ties that are also clear, white, or tooth-colored. Clear braces can be an excellent choice for image-conscious patients, but because they are more delicate than metal braces, we generally only recommend them for older teens and adults.
Invisalign clear aligner therapy
Instead of brackets and bands, the Invisalign system uses a series of clear, customized, removable aligners. These are custom-designed to fit snugly over the teeth, and gently move them into the desired positions over time. Aligners are made of a soft but strong thermoplastic resin and are replaced with the next in the series every 1-2 weeks as directed by Dr. Francis to keep up with the shifting teeth.
All of these options can be a fantastic fit for busy adults! Our doctors will always take your unique needs and lifestyle into account before recommending the treatment method they feel would work best for your smile.
Get the smile you deserve with Decatur Orthodontics
You’ll never find “one size fits all” treatment here at Decatur Orthodontics! Every smile is unique and we know that what works for one patient may not work for another. This is one reason it’s so important to choose an experienced orthodontist you trust. Our talented team will create a customized treatment plan for you based on your specific needs and you can count on us for a stress-free orthodontic experience and superior results that last!
Our Decatur office is committed to providing patients of all ages with the latest in orthodontic techniques and technology. We’ve been creating beautiful smiles in our community for years and would love the chance to do the same for you! If you’re ready to take the first step towards achieving the smile you’ve always dreamed of, get in touch with us today to schedule a FREE consultation with Dr. Francis.