Once upon a time, the majority of patients seeking orthodontic treatment were adolescents. Today, one in five patients is an adult! Adult orthodontic treatment is here to stay! Multiple treatment options exist including traditional metal braces, clear ceramic braces, and clear acrylic tray aligners (ClearCorrect). How do you know which option is right for you? The first step is to visit a qualified orthodontist. He or she will perform a thorough exam, take diagnostic records, and review all your treatment options with you. Be clear about describing your goals in seeking orthodontic care, this will help your orthodontist create the bestÂ treatment plan for your individual needs.
I myself was an adult orthodontic patient. When I was seen by an orthodontist as a child, the approach was different. Once I completed my orthodontic residency, I recognized that the issues with my smile and my bite that I had been unhappy with were totally correctable. My treatment plan included traditional metal braces to straighten the teeth and orthognathic (jaw) surgery to address the bite. Naturally, not everyone one needs or wants this type of treatment, but it was definitely the best decision for me. I will enjoy my “new” smile for the rest of my life. That’s what I call a good investment of time and energy.
Although your treatment itself will Â not last a lifetime, your retention will. Gone are the days when retainers are worn briefly and then thrown away. In order for your smile to last a lifetime, your retainers need to do the same, because teeth continue to shift throughout our lifetime. For adults who may have waited to seek treatment or are seeking it for a second time, Â once we place the teeth into their corrected positions, we want to keep them there! For almost all adult patients this means using fixed (bonded) wire retainers behind the teeth.
Remember, as long as your teeth, bone, and gums are healthy, it’s never too late to create a perfect smile.Â Contact me or another qualified orthodontist today and start your journey to the best smile of your life!