Orthodontics for Ceder Rapids Adults
Adult braces? If you’re out of your teens, you might think you missed your chance for straight teeth, but that’s not true! Modern orthodontic treatment is for adults as well as teens living in Cedar Rapids. And even if you had braces before, your teeth might still shift over time, which is another reason to consider treatment as an adult.
Today, orthodontic treatment is a viable option for almost any adult. It is well-recognized that when left untreated, many orthodontic problems may become worse. When you have a malocclusion (“bad bite”), your teeth may be crowded, excessively spaced or may not fit together correctly. Such conditions may lead to dental health problems. Crowded teeth are hard to clean and, given time, may contribute to tooth decay, gum disease and even tooth loss. Bad bites can also result in abnormal wearing of tooth surfaces (see photo below), difficulty chewing and damage to supporting bone and gum tissue. Poorly aligned teeth can contribute to pain in the jaw joints.
How Teeth Shift As We Age
Our teeth naturally move and shift throughout our lives — including in ways we’d prefer they didn’t. In a process called mesial drift, our teeth slowly move towards the front of our mouths as we age. Other factors, including enamel loss, teeth grinding, and tooth loss, can move our teeth out of alignment too. The result is an increasingly crooked, overcrowded smile that is harder to keep healthy.
Daily Habits and Shifting Teeth
Some of the things we do every day without even thinking about it can contribute to our teeth shifting over time. Sleeping on your stomach and resting your head on your hands when sitting can both be culprits of dental shifting, but good posture and side or back sleeping will minimize this effect.
Good oral hygiene is also important for keeping your teeth where they should be, because it helps reduce enamel loss over time. So keep up with that daily flossing and twice daily brushing, and don’t forget about your regular dental appointments!
It’s Never Too Late for Orthodontic Treatment
Stopping bad habits and maintaining good ones is important, but it won’t reverse dental shifting that has already taken place, and that’s where adult orthodontic treatment comes in. While it’s true that our teeth can be guided into place more easily when we are younger, they will still respond to orthodontic appliances.
One advantage adult orthodontic patients have over teenagers is that they have the self-discipline to carefully follow the orthodontist’s instruction, which ensures better, timelier results!
Go Low-Profile With Modern Orthodontics
Maybe you already knew that Cedar Rapids adults could get braces, and what’s really stopping you is the idea of spending a year or so as a “brace-face.” Don’t be discouraged! There are several ways to get orthodontic treatment without everyone noticing your appliance, such as Invisalign. No one needs to know that you’re on your way to a straighter smile if you don’t want them to!
Abnormal tooth wear in an adult
You’ll be pleased to learn that adult braces will fit in with your current lifestyle – you can sing, play a musical instrument, dine out, kiss, and even have your picture taken. One in five orthodontic patients is an adult. The AAO estimates that more than 1,000,000 adults in the United States and Canada are receiving treatment from orthodontists who are members of the AAO.
The rate of toothlessness has declined over recent decades. Our great-grandparents, for the most part, lost their teeth around age 40. Today’s 25-year-old has the potential of another 75 years of keeping and using their teeth. This is a major change in dental health care (and life expectancy). Teeth that do not fit well often wear down more quickly—another reason to make sure that your teeth are in good alignment and well maintained in your adult years.
Schedule Your Consultation Today!
Everyone’s teeth are different, and so is their orthodontic treatment. We’re sure you still have many questions about what your treatment in Cedar Rapids would involve, how long it would take, and, of course, the cost. We’d be happy to answer any questions you have about adult braces, so just give us a call or stop by!
©2006 American Association of Orthodontists