Over one fourth of people who are in braces to straighten teeth are adults. However, unlike adolescents and teens who proudly draw attention to their braces with colored bands, most adults feel a bit more awkward. Having wires and brackets is not only physically uncomfortable, it can make one feel clumsy socially and in business settings.
The number of adults who had orthodontic treatment rose nearly 40% from 1996 to 2015. Over the past two decades, the number of teens in braces has nearly doubled.
Other than make-up, cosmetic dentistry now represents the largest nonsurgical beauty industry. Why? In one study, 38 percent of Americans stated they would pass on a second date with someone with misaligned teeth. It also perceived that those with straight teeth are 38 percent more likely to be assumed as smart.
A beautiful smile can be expensive through cosmetic dentistry. Porcelain veneers and porcelain crowns – applied to teeth most visible in a smile – can easily top $12,000. Thus, it is far more economical to move the teeth you have through braces.
While it’s obvious that straight teeth can improve the appearance of a smile, they also are easier to keep clean. Crowded, crooked teeth create tight angles that tend to harbor debris and food particles. Because it is more difficult to clean these tight spots, it becomes easier for oral bacteria to accumulate.
When oral bacteria gather, they can harden into tartar, or calculus – in as little as 48 hours. Tartar is actually a hardened colony of bacteria that cannot be brushed or flossed away. Using special tools, this is what dental hygienist is scrapping off teeth during your 6-month cleanings.
Oral bacteria eats away at gum tissues and tooth enamel. As they continue to thrive and reproduce, the result can be cavities, gingivitis and periodontal disease. Periodontal (gum) disease is the nation’s leading cause of adult tooth loss.
Properly aligned teeth also help to keep your TMJ (jaw joints) in unstrained positions. When the jaw joints experience stress and strain from bite misalignment, it can lead to migraines, frequent headaches, sore jaw joints, difficulty opening the mouth fully, worn or chipped teeth from night-time clenching or grinding, ear ringing, jaw popping and dizziness.
For adults who want to improve the appearance and health of their smiles, but don’t want to endure the challenges of wearing braces, an alternative is available and solves virtually every issue associated with the dread of braces. Invisalign is a straightening system that uses clear molds to gently ease teeth into proper position. There are no brackets or wires, so the gums and lips are not subject to sore spots or tears. And, because they are essentially undetectable, the patient avoids awkwardness when speaking or smiling.
The ability to remove the molds for eating and brushing is one of the most appealing aspects of the Invisalign system. With Invisalign, you can eat the foods you want and properly clean your teeth without the challenges of traditional braces.
Invisalign is especially appealing for adults who wore braces in their youth and have experienced shifting over the years. This process makes easing teeth back into position simple and fast.
Considering realigning teeth with Invisalign? Call 910-254-4555 to schedule a no-charge exam and consultation. We will explain the process and determine if Invisalign is appropriate for the degree of realignment you need. We can also discuss payment options, many with no down payment required and interest-free.