For many people, the first thing they think of when they hear the term “orthodontics” is a teenager wearing bulky metal brace. This stereotype has been quite persistent over the years, leading many people to wonder, “am I too old for orthodontic treatment?” While many of our patients here at Periago Orthodontics are younger, treatment can have a multitude of benefits of all ages – including adults. In fact, about 1 out of every 5 current orthodontic patients is over the age of 18!
If you’ve spent years being unhappy with how your teeth look and feel, now is the perfect time to explore how orthodontics can help you achieve a healthier, straighter smile. Here at Periago Orthodontics, we’re proud to offer a variety of treatment options to correct crooked teeth, overbites, underbites, incorrect jaw positioning, and more. You’re never too old to improve your oral health. To learn more about what orthodontics actually is, and how it can help you achieve the smile you’ve always wanted, keep reading below.
What is orthodontics?
Orthodontics is a specialty under the dentistry umbrella. Therefore an orthodontist is a dentist who has received additional education and training to identify and correct bite abnormalities. This gives them the skill and expertise necessary to successfully straighten teeth, correct misaligned jaws, and improve the overall function of the mouth.
Generally speaking, orthodontists focus on the diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of dental and facial abnormalities. When these kinds of issues are left untreated, they can get worse over time. This can result in premature wear and tear on the teeth, gum tissue, and bone that may cause pain in the face and neck, headaches, and even difficulties with chewing or speaking. An experienced orthodontist like Dr. Periago will be able to diagnose and treat these issues, improving both the function and appearance of your smile!
Why more adults are choosing orthodontic treatment
As we age, we often begin to understand a bit more about the many ways that oral health is linked to our total body health. For some people, this knowledge leads them to take action by seeking dental or orthodontic treatment that will give them the tools they need to better care for their teeth and gums.
We also see a number of adult patients who received some orthodontic treatment earlier in life that was never completed. Touch-up treatment is common, as well. 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 can monitor the teeth, provide new retainers, or retreat with braces or aligners.
Some adults have never had orthodontic treatment before and are simply looking to improve the cosmetic appearance of their smile. The resulting boost in confidence and self-esteem can have a positive impact in many areas of a person’s life, both professionally and personally.
Orthodontic options for adult patients
Whatever your reason for seeking orthodontic treatment as an adult, you have more options than ever before! Our expert team is proud to offer the following treatments for a total smile makeover.
Traditional metal braces
Traditional metal braces are a long-time 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
The Invisalign system consists of clear, removable aligners that are customized to fit comfortably over the teeth. Like braces, the aligners gently move the teeth into the desired positions. This is accomplished by wearing them 20-22 hours per day throughout the course of treatment, and replacing them every 1-2 weeks for the next aligner in the system.
Invisalign offers patients a bit of freedom and flexibility that traditional braces just can’t beat! There are no food restrictions since aligners are removed when eating or drinking. They also make it easier to keep your teeth and gums clean and healthy since you don’t have to work around wires and brackets, and can simply brush and floss the way you normally would.
Get the smile you deserve with Periago Orthodontics
Every smile is unique, so there is no “one size fits all” treatment method. Every patient will respond to treatment in their own way, so it’s important to choose an experienced orthodontist like Dr. Periago! She’ll create a one-of-a-kind plan based on your unique smile, lifestyle, and goals and will only recommend the treatment she believes will meet your needs. You can trust that you’ll receive nothing less than the best care and superior results with Periago Orthodontics!
Our talented team is committed to providing the latest in orthodontic techniques and technology for patients of all ages in New Albany, Corydon, Floyds Knobs, and the surrounding communities. It’s our goal to provide you with a rewarding and stress-free journey from start to finish, and we work hard to provide a welcoming atmosphere that feels like home. You’re not just another face here, you’re family!
It’s never too late to get the smile you’ve always wanted! Take the first step today by calling us to schedule your FREE initial consultation.