Never Too Old for Braces
Have you considered getting orthodontic treatment but felt you were too old? Often adults put straightening their teeth as a last priority compared to other health concerns and conditions. Or they prefer to put their money towards straightening their child’s teeth versus their own. Having straight teeth has shown to improve self image, chewing, digestion, and speech, to name a few. The following are some of the reasons adults choose to forego orthodontic treatment and why they should place it as a priority.
Kids come first
We as parents always put our children’s well-being before our own and that includes getting them braces before we ever consider getting orthodontic treatment ourselves. At Ballard Orthodontics, we hear all too often parents, especially moms, say “as soon as my kids are out of braces, I can finally get my teeth straight!” Parents of large families may face financial dilemmas when it comes to offering orthodontic treatment to their children, let alone for themselves. Adults may feel that with life’s expenses it’s difficult to set aside money and time for their own orthodontic care.
New Patient Exam
If you haven’t had a new patient exam at an orthodontic office, it’s hard to pinpoint exactly what your orthodontic treatment will cost. Some of the factors that determine your final bill include how extensive your treatment will be and what you desire as the end result. You may have a few teeth that need to be aligned or you may consider getting limited treatment with either braces or Invisalign. If you are one that needs full treatment…. meaning all of your teeth moved… offices are great at setting up payments that can be spread out throughout your treatment journey.
I’m too old
Adult bones have stopped growing, so some structural changes may not be possible without surgery and the process of treatment may take longer than an adolescent. In fact, comprehensive orthodontic treatment can require anywhere from 12-36 months on average but it varies from patient to patient... When you are older and going through treatment you may need to see a periodontist (gum tissue specialist) as well as your general dentist to ensure that the treatment doesn’t get complicated by added bone loss from gum disease.
I have lived this long and was fine, why now?
A lot of people have crowding, overlapping teeth, and their bite may be off. Crooked teeth can be difficult to clean making tooth decay and gum disease more likely. Teeth that don’t fit together properly may cause the bite to be off. This can lead to jaw issues when chewing or eating. Also, it can put stress on your chewing muscles causing facial or jaw pain.
Many individuals clench or grind their teeth which causes their teeth to wear down. The older we get, the worse the wear becomes. As the teeth wear down, oddly enough they continue to erupt ever so slightly, wear down some more, erupt slightly and so on ultimately leading to teeth that look like stubs as the tooth structure becomes none existent. When your bite is off and the teeth are not properly aligned, your wear the teeth down to your bite. Often times to restore your teeth to a natural-looking shape and function, you will not only need orthodontic treatment but dental work as well that will likely include crowns.
Braces are not your only option. There is a choice between metal and ceramic brackets. The ceramic is translucent and blends in with your teeth. Depending on your treatment you may also have the option for clear aligners. These aligners are clear, custom-made trays created especially for your teeth and they are nearly impossible to see. Most clear aligner plans require you to wear them, 20-22 hours a day switching to a new aligner every two weeks.
At Ballard Orthodontics, we offer free consultations that will help you determine the cost, duration, and style of orthodontic treatment that will fit your needs and lifestyle. Our passion is to straighten teeth, thereby creating beautiful smiles and healthy mouths. Contact us today to find out how our qualified and caring orthodontist can help you!