Am I Too Old For Braces

A silly stigma exists that braces are exclusively for kids and teens (thanks, Hollywood). And while it would be nice if our teeth magically became straight when we hit age 13 or 20, that’s hardly the case!

So you might ask yourself, “Am I too old for braces?” Absolutely not! Dr. Rhoads and her excellent team at Rhoads Orthodontics can provide you with braces at any age.


How Will I Know If I Need Braces?

Dr. Rhoads has been proudly serving the Cranberry Township community in and out of office for years, providing braces to countless patients! But what constitutes braces? They can be a solution for both aesthetic or functionality purposes, but usually are due to the following problems:

  • Orthodontic issues: Many issues can constitute braces as your optimal treatment option. It goes beyond crooked teeth—braces and aligners can treat bite misalignment, jaw issues, and a number of other problems.
  • Cosmetic Concerns: As you age, resolving cosmetic concerns related to your smile can become a higher priority. When we’re happy with our smile, it can impact many aspects of our adult life for the better, most notably self-confidence.
  • Health Benefits: Straight teeth are much easier to clean, reducing the likelihood of conditions like gum disease and tooth decay!

Once you’ve been examined and approved for braces, our team at Rhoads Orthodontics will devise a custom treatment plan (a timeline of your treatment, follow-ups, and recovery). Working closely with our team ensures you’re comfortable and confident as you tackle this important step in your oral health!


Ageless, But Different

There will be several variations to consider as an adult getting braces, in contrast to what younger patients experience. We will be comparing a few factors that can help you regardless of how old you are!


Treatment Objectives

  • Children: Orthodontic treatment for children plays an interceptive and preventive role. We usually recommend a visit before age 7, which is where we try to step in with any necessary treatment. The jaw and teeth are easier to manipulate at this stage in life. Early-age braces offer the advantage of identifying and addressing issues like crowding and bite problems before they necessitate more invasive treatment.
  • Adults: Adult patients are more aware of issues they have, particularly aesthetic ones. They might seek to address these long-standing concerns later in life. With a mouth of permanent teeth, braces will primarily concentrate on aligning the existing teeth for our teenage and adult patients.


Orthodontic Options

  • Children: Traditional metal braces are almost always the first choice for kids; they’re effective and durable, addressing all sorts of problems. However, in some cases, Dr. Rhoads may consider clear braces or aligners as suitable alternatives, depending on the specific treatment needs.
  • Adults: Adults often lean toward clear aligners or ceramic braces for their more discreet appearance. The choice between these options depends on both the specific case requirements and the patient’s personal preferences.

Am I Too Old For Braces

Psychosocial Effects

  • Children: Braces can often lead to issues of confidence and self-esteem among kids. Being around peers at school can be a cause for concern. While the wait is worth it in the end, it can be harder for our pediatric patients to see the light at the end of the tunnel!
  • Adults: Adults may also have issues with self-image while undergoing treatment, but they often approach it from a slightly different standpoint. When we’re older,  we may be more open to enduring treatment for the long-term benefits of braces.


Challenges with Treatment

  • Children: Since children have more malleable tissues and jawbones, this can facilitate easier solutions for certain procedures. However, they usually require additional guidance and supervision on behalf of both our team and parents to prevent damage from happening.
  • Adults: Pre-existing dental treatments such as fillings, crowns, or bridges can be obstacles, needing to be maintained alongside a set of braces. Additionally, adults’ fully developed jaws can eliminate certain treatment options.


Oral Health and Compliance

  • Children: Adhering to appropriate oral hygiene practices and dietary restrictions while wearing braces is vital. Neglecting healthy habits can pose a threat to achieving a successful outcome. 
  • Adults: Usually, adult patients are able to practice effective oral hygiene practices of their own volition. This independent compliance can mean less interference with treatment and potentially better, faster results.


Am I Too Old For Braces

Rhoads is The Right Choice For You!

Our team wants to be clear that braces can be an appropriate option for all of our patients because a beautiful smile appeals to everyone. We’re here to help you every step of the way! If you’re curious about treatment options, call our award-winning Cranberry Township office at 724-369-8655!