Teens in braces is an image that has a lot of staying power, so when most people think of orthodontics, it’s usually in connection with this stereotype. You may not even be aware that treatment can benefit patients of all ages, including adults. While it’s true that we treat many teens, we’ve actually seen a big jump in the number of adults seeking orthodontic treatment in the last few years. In fact, about 1 in every 5 current orthodontic patients is over the age of 18!
If you’ve spent most of your life feeling unhappy or self-conscious about how your teeth look and function, it’s a great time to look into improving your oral health. The truth is, you’re never too old to achieve a confident smile! Rhoads Orthodontics is proud to offer a variety of treatment options to correct a number of issues, including crooked teeth, overbites, underbites, incorrect jaw positioning, and more.
Let’s take a closer look at what orthodontics actually is, and how our expert team can help you achieve the smile you’ve always wanted!
What is orthodontics?
Orthodontics is a dental specialty. An orthodontist is a dentist who has had years of additional education and training in identifying and correcting bite abnormalities. They also learn how to successfully straighten teeth, correct misaligned jaws, and improve the overall function of the mouth.
An experienced orthodontist like Dr. Rhoads is able to diagnose, prevent, and treat dental and facial abnormalities. When these are left untreated, they can worsen over time, leading to premature wear and tear on the teeth, gum tissue, and bone. This may eventually result in pain in the face and neck area, headaches, and even difficulties with chewing or speaking.
Orthodontists are able to diagnose and treat these types of issues, improving both the function and appearance of your smile.
Why are more adults now choosing orthodontic treatment?
There are a number of reasons we’ve seen an uptick in adults exploring orthodontic treatment. As we get older, we often begin to understand more about how oral health is linked to our total body health. Some people are encouraged to seek out dental or orthodontic treatment that will allow them to better care for their teeth and gums.
We also talk to many adult patients who received orthodontic treatment earlier in life that was never completed, who now want to finish the process. Another aspect of that is touch-up treatment is common, since 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, we have multiple options, including monitoring the teeth, providing new retainers, or re-treating with braces or aligners.
Finally, there are a number of adults who 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!
What orthodontic options are available for adult patients?
Whatever your reason for seeking orthodontic treatment as an adult, there are more options for you to choose from than ever before! Rhoads Orthodontics offers the following treatments for a total smile makeover.
Traditional metal braces
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. Ceramic 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 to keep up with the shifting teeth.
All three of these options can be a great fit for busy adults! You can trust that Dr. Rhoads will only recommend the treatment she feels will work best with your smile, lifestyle, and goals.
Get the smile you’ve always wanted with Rhoads Orthodontics
There’s no “one size fits all” treatment here at Rhoads Orthodontics! Every smile is unique, and we know that some treatment methods will be more suitable than others for certain patients. That’s why it’s so important to choose an experienced orthodontist like Dr. Rhoads! She will build a personalized treatment plan for you based on your specific needs, giving you everything you need for a rewarding orthodontic experience and superior results.
At Rhoads Orthodontics, we have a talented team that’s committed to providing patients with the latest in orthodontic technique and technology. If you’re ready to take the first step towards the smile you’ve been waiting for, get in touch today to schedule a FREE consultation with Dr. Rhoads!