As an adult, it can be hard to swallow your pride when your dentist suggests adult braces. After all, how will you conduct a business meeting or go on a date with a mouth full of metal? Before you politely excuse yourself from the dentist's office and vow never to return, read these three reasons not to be scared of adult braces:
1: Braces Are Less Noticeable Than Ever Before
Don't worry about ridiculous-looking headgear and painful metal brackets--braces today aren't what they were twenty or thirty years ago. Here are a few ways braces have evolved over the decades:
- Better Brackets: In addition to offering tooth-colored or clear brackets, today's brackets are smaller, flatter, and more comfortable. Also, while some older brackets contained metal straps that wrapped all the way around your tooth, newer versions are held in place with a small amount of dental cement. This means that your teeth will look cleaner, and those braces won't be as obvious.
- No Rubber Bands: Don't worry about choosing a rubber band color that will mesh with most of your work outfits. Believe it or not, some types of braces don't use rubber bands at all. Self-litigating braces contain tiny metal clips to hold wires in place, speeding up appointment times and reducing friction.
- Easier to Keep Clean: Older braces could be difficult to brush and floss, which led some patients to discover yellowed, damaged teeth when their braces were finally removed. However, newer braces are made with smoother surfaces that don't catch as much grime, so that your teeth are easier to keep clean.
Before you start hyperventilating over the idea of getting braces, ask your dentist if you can see examples of new versions. You might be surprised to see how low-profile standard metal braces are these days.
2: You Might Not Have To Wear Them A Full Two Years
The minute you hear the word "braces," you might take a mental inventory of every public appearance you have to make in the next few years. However, orthodontic advancements have made treatments faster too. Because treatments have also improved, you might not have to wear those braces for a full two years. In fact, experts predict that most adults will wear braces between 12 and 20 months, which means that your teeth might be straight and perfect in as little as a year.
When you consider that people are living longer than ever before, what is a year's time? By taking the plunge and getting your braces now, you might be able to enjoy straight teeth clear into your eighties, without having to avoid any more family pictures. However, keep in mind that the length of orthodontic treatment varies from patient to patient. If you have severe alignment issues or jaw problems, you might have to wear your braces longer than other people.
3: You Aren't Alone
Sometimes, people feel silly wearing braces because they feel like they will be the only adult patient. However, adult braces are more popular than ever—with one study reporting that 20% of patients are over the age of 18. To put that number into perspective, that means that one in five orthodontic patients are adults.
Although you might assume that other adults get braces to appeal to their inner vanity, there are actually some pretty compelling health reasons to straighten out those mature teeth. Because crooked teeth can collect grime, straight teeth tend to stay healthier, warding off problems like oral decay and periodontal disease. Getting braces now might help you to protect your dental health during your golden years, when most people experience issues anyway.
By understanding the realities and benefits of adult braces, you might be able to wear your braces confidently and keep your teeth healthy, while your smile becomes straight and beautiful. For more information, visit sites like http://www.cresthillfamilydental.com.