Your Guide To Adult Orthodontic Treatment
Have you always thought of braces as something only teens get? Does your mind automatically conjure up the image of a gawky adolescent every time you hear the word “orthodontics”? If so, you’re not alone. Many people associate orthodontic treatment with teens, and they do make up a significant portion of the patient population, with the most common age group for treatment being 10-14. But that doesn’t mean that other age groups get left behind!
Here at Johnson Family Orthodontics, we create award-winning smiles for patients of all ages, including adults. In fact, adults are one of our fastest-growing patient groups. Currently, just over 25% of all orthodontic patients are 18+. Yet many adults we hear from still think that the chance to transform their smile has passed them by. This couldn’t be further from the truth! There’s no age limit on achieving a healthier smile.
If you’ve spent years of your life feeling uncomfortable with the way your teeth look and feel, we’ve got good news for you—you don’t have to settle for a smile you don’t love! Our expert team can align your bite and straighten your teeth, giving you the confident smile you’ve always wanted. To learn more about our adult treatment options, and how the process works, keep reading below!
Why are more adults interested in orthodontic treatment?
Once a person becomes aware that adult treatment is available, there are many reasons for them to explore this option. For one thing, most of us tend to become more aware of how our oral health and overall health are connected as we get older. In our younger years, we may not understand that caring for (or neglecting) our teeth and gums can impact our whole body. Once they “get the memo,” so to speak, adults are more likely to look for dental or orthodontic care that can help them maintain good oral health over the years.
Some adults began the orthodontic process in their teens but never completed treatment. Others finished but didn’t wear their retainer as directed. In either scenario, the patient’s teeth have begun drifting towards their original positions, undoing any progress made when they were younger. They may wish to complete their interrupted orthodontic journey, while some might need to repeat the whole process from start to finish.
Then there are the adults simply looking to achieve a more attractive smile! Correcting crooked teeth and other misalignments will improve the cosmetic appearance of your smile and help reduce or eliminate associated symptoms like headaches and jaw pain. Feeling confident in your smile can also boost the social and professional aspects of your life.
Your complimentary consultation
Your free consultation with us packs a lot into one appointment! It’s our chance to meet, get to know each other, and discuss any concerns you have about your oral health. During this visit, our team will:
- review your dental and medical history forms
- perform a thorough oral examination to determine if treatment is necessary
- create a customized treatment plan for you
- discuss the investment required for your new smile
- outline your insurance options and the payment plans available to you
Once you’ve decided on a treatment plan with Dr. Johnson, we’ll go over everything included in the process. We’ll also discuss the investment needed for your new smile, and walk you through your payment options. We’ll never begin treatment before ensuring you understand exactly what your treatment plan includes, so you never have to worry about hidden fees here! Our goal is to provide you with world-class care that’s effective and affordable.
What treatment options are available for adult patients?
Johnson Family Orthodontics is proud to offer patients the following treatments for a comfortable, customizable, and affordable experience.
Traditional metal braces
Traditional metal braces are the most widely used orthodontic appliance and come with a proven track record of success. They efficiently treat a variety of orthodontic issues and can be particularly useful in cases that are more severe or complex. While braces have been around for a long time, they have undergone some impressive changes in recent years! Modern metal braces are lighter, sleeker, and more comfortable than previous models. They’re more fun, too! Patients can add a pop of color with our range of brightly colored elastics, or go with clear or tooth-colored bands for a more subtle approach to treatment.
Clear braces function the same way metal braces do, but they come with the added benefit of clear brackets. This offers an incredibly subtle way to straighten teeth, especially when paired with clear, white, or tooth-colored elastics. The ceramic brackets we use with clear braces are slightly larger and a bit more brittle than metal brackets, so we are more likely to use them on the upper front teeth than the lower teeth. Because they are much less visible than metal brackets, clear braces tend to be a popular choice with our teen and adult patients!
Invisalign clear aligners
Instead of brackets, wires, and bands, the innovative Invisalign system uses a series of customized clear aligners to shift the teeth over time. The aligners are designed to be removed when a patient is eating, drinking anything other than water, and brushing their teeth. This gives them an extra measure of freedom and flexibility that our patients love!
Patient compliance is an essential part of treatment with Invisalign. The aligners must be worn for 20-22 hours per day throughout the orthodontic process to successfully straighten smiles. Patients are also responsible for switching each aligner out with the next in the series every 1-2 weeks. This allows them to keep up with the movements their teeth are making. When worn as directed, Invisalign can be just as efficient as braces at treating many of the most common orthodontic issues.
These are similar to traditional braces in several ways. For instance, both have brackets attached to the surface of the teeth, and both use wires and rubber bands to slowly move them into more desirable positions. However, the brackets used with lingual braces are placed on the back sides of the teeth facing the tongue, rather than the front of the teeth. This makes them virtually invisible, which can be especially attractive for image-conscious teens and adults!
Your best smile is waiting for you at Johnson Family Orthodontics
Every smile is unique, and what works for one patient may not be a good fit for another. Not every treatment option will be suitable for all patients. Working with an experienced orthodontist like Dr. Johnson guarantees you’ll receive only the most appropriate treatment for your specific needs. If you’re ready to learn more about how orthodontics can transform your smile, get in touch today to schedule a FREE consultation with our Salem office!