Am I Too Old for Braces?

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Think you’re too old for braces? Think again!

While braces are often seen on kids, teens, and young adults, there’s not really an age limit on someone getting braces, and you can benefit from braces at any age! 

As long as your gums and jawbone structure are in relatively good shape, it’s never too late to get the smile you’ve always wanted. Many people think braces for adults are going to look funny or be a pain. With all the braces options available these days, you can get subtle braces that conveniently fit your lifestyle. 

Are Braces Right for Me?

While braces generally are safe for adults, there are a few problems you can run into when you’re looking to get braces later in life, like:

  • Your bones have stopped growing, which means some structural changes can’t be accomplished without surgery.
  • The process may take longer for you than for an adolescent or teenager. 
  • You may need to see a periodontist as well as your general dentist and orthodontist. If there’s any bone loss from gum disease, there could be complications during the process. 

Other than the possible problems listed above or the disapproval of your orthodontist or doctor, you should be in the clear if you decide braces are right for you. 

Here’s why many adults choose to get braces: 

  • They can improve your overall oral health. 
  • They can resolve or prevent issues like a bad bite, crowded teeth, tooth decay, and even gum disease.
  • They help with digestive issues 
  • They improve speech problems.
  • They can help with facial pain and temporomandibular joint disorders (TMJ or TMD). 
  • They reduce cavities and periodontal disease 

Different Types of Braces

Because many of our options are hardly noticeable, you can achieve a straighter smile without anyone ever knowing! Some adults prefer ceramic braces (also known as white braces), which offer a more subtle alternative to metal braces. Others opt for gold braces so they can show off a bright, warm smile throughout treatment. Many will choose lingual braces or Invisalign for an undetectable treatment. With so many options available, it’s never been easier to wear braces comfortably and confidently in adulthood.

Ceramic braces are translucent, and worn on the front of teeth. These braces blend in with your teeth. This choice isn’t recommended for lower teeth because they can wear away the enamel behind upper teeth. Ceramic braces also tend to cost more than metal braces. These brackets often break, too, and may not be as comfortable on lower teeth as metal brackets. 

Metal braces are the classic choice. Stainless steel braces are glued to the front of teeth and connected by wires. They’re still widely considered the standard when it comes to braces because they’re effective and affordable.

Lingual braces are mounted on the back of teeth, making them nearly invisible. The downside of these braces is that they can irritate the tongue and cause speech problems, though it will only last for the duration of treatment.

Clear aligners are custom, clear acrylic trays that slip over your teeth. These are known as Invisalign, ClearCorrect, and other available brands on the market. This option is popular with adults who want to avoid wires and brackets, and discreetly transform their smile. 

Benefits of Braces for Adults 

The American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) states that one in five orthodontic patients is over the age 18. More and more adults are electing to correct their teeth because they want to feel happy, healthy, and confident. Poor dental health can lead to some major issues, such as bone and gum loss, tooth decay, abnormal wear on tooth enamel, jaw joint, and painful headaches. Braces can help prevent these problems. 

Braces can also have a positive impact on your oral health and everyday life. Having straight teeth makes it easier to brush, floss, and maintain your mouth. As an added benefit, your overall appearance and self-confidence will improve. Crowding and crooked teeth can make it harder to maintain oral health, which can lead to more plaque and inflammation. The number of adults undergoing orthodontic treatment has risen by 40% in the past decade, according to the American Association of Orthodontists (AAO).

Many adults feel the same as you about their teeth, and adult braces are becoming a more common occurrence. It’s never too late to make a change that’ll make you feel great! 

Visit Henry Orthodontics Today! 

At Henry Orthodontics, we have braces for all ages, including braces for adults. If you’ve always wanted to straighten your smile, know that you can. Questions, concerns, or want to learn more? Get in touch with our team today! Our orthodontics services are available to those in St. Augustine, St. Johns, and the surrounding FL communities.