Are you an adult with crooked teeth or bite problems? With more adults seeking orthodontic treatment than ever before, you’re not alone. However, having a mouth full of metal can be a hindrance for adults in their personal and professional lives, which leaves many older orthodontic patients looking for alternatives to traditional braces. If you want straighter teeth without the brace face, here are three options to consider.
How would you like to have the smile of your dreams almost instantly? Porcelain veneers and dental bonding make this possible for cosmetic-only cases with little to no crowding. The procedure involves reshaping or grinding down your natural teeth and replacing them with veneers or filling them in with composite material to create cosmetically perfect teeth. Veneers are commonly used for models, actors, and other careers where perfect teeth are needed quickly.
If you’re considering bonding or veneers, keep in mind that they don’t last forever. You will need to get your veneers replaced at least once or twice over the course of your lifetime. Patients with problem bites or other functional issues are not good candidates for veneers.
If you want the benefits of orthodontics without the metal wires, invisible aligners may be the right choice for you. Invisible aligners are clear plastic trays that you can remove to eat and brush your teeth. Your orthodontist will give you a new set every one or two weeks to gradually move your teeth.
Although invisible aligners were once limited to simple cases, today’s technology can do almost anything that traditional braces can do, aside from the most complicated cases. Talented orthodontists can even combine aligners with small sections of brackets or other appliances to achieve amazing results.
You already know that retainers are necessary to keep your smile straight after braces, but did you know that they can also be an alternative to braces? Adults with very mild cases can be treated with just retainers. A series of two or three clear plastic retainers may be enough to make small movements, while a spring-loaded retainer can be used for mild to moderate cases.
Are you ready to begin your journey to a new smile? Making an appointment with a local orthodontist is the first step. Most practices offer a free consultation, so there’s no risk. If you’re interested in veneers, bonding or other cosmetic refinements in addition to or instead of orthodontic treatment, consider requesting a referral to a cosmetic dentist.