Adult Orthodontic Treatments That May Help Your Misaligned Teeth

If you have a problem with your bite and never had orthodontic treatments as a child, then you may want to consider braces as an adult. A misaligned bite can affect the appearance of your smile, and it can also have more serious consequences. Here's why you may want braces as an adult and what to expect.

Why Orthodontic Treatment Is Important For Oral Health

The purpose of orthodontic treatment is to move your teeth into proper alignment and make them straighter. This improves your appearance and it helps you chew better. When your teeth are properly aligned and straight, you reduce the risk of problems such as TMJ and tooth decay since your teeth are easier to clean.

What To Expect With Adult Braces

Ideally, braces are put on when you're a child or teen because your jawbone is still growing and changing. However, you can get the same results as an adult, it may just take longer. Your dentist helps you decide if metal braces are right for you or if you can use clear aligner trays. Either way, you'll have frequent visits to your dentist to adjust your braces or get new trays. You may need orthodontic treatment for a few years, but you might need to wear a retainer for longer than that to keep your teeth in their new position.

If you get the clear aligner trays, you can eat a normal diet since you take the trays out when you eat. If you wear traditional metal braces, you'll probably need to change your diet somewhat so your braces are easier to clean and so they aren't damaged by hard foods. You need to maintain good oral hygiene no matter what type of braces you wear so you don't develop cavities during your treatment. Also, your dentist may want you to have dental work done before you have braces put on so your teeth are in good shape and you're not at high risk of decay or gum disease while you have your orthodontic work.

If you have an overbite, underbite, or other problem with your teeth, talk to your dentist about your options for orthodontic treatments. Your age doesn't matter, and wearing braces for several months or a few years might improve your oral health and help you prevent oral joint pain or headaches from misaligned teeth. Your smile may also improve with straighter teeth, and that can help you feel much better about your appearance too.