When you hear “orthodontics,” do you instantly picture a teenager in braces? If so, you’re not alone—this is one stereotype that’s had some serious staying power! While it’s true that teens make up a significant percentage of orthodontic patients, treatment can be beneficial for children and adults, too. We’ve seen more adult patients than ever in our Jackson and Brandon offices. If you’ve spent a lifetime feeling unhappy with the way your teeth look or function, this guide to orthodontic treatment as an adult can help you, too!
Here at Sandifer Orthodontics, we believe everyone deserves a healthy and confident smile, no matter their age. With expert treatment from an experienced orthodontist like Dr. Sandifer, you can enjoy straighter teeth and improved oral health, whether 7 or 75! Keep reading below to learn more about how adult treatment can transform your smile.
You’re Never Too Old for a Beautiful Smile
Most younger patients are in treatment because their parents have chosen it after an evaluation with a trusted orthodontist. While teens can undoubtedly understand why braces or aligners are suitable for their smiles, we’ve found that adults tend to be much more aware of how important a healthy mouth truly is.
This is mainly due to understanding how our oral health can affect our total body health as we get older. This helps adult patients appreciate that the investment in orthodontic treatment comes with a significant pay-off in the form of a smile that looks great, feels good, and functions exactly as it should!
We also have more treatment options than ever to offer adult patients in Jackson and Brandon, including clear braces and clear aligners. These appliances make it easy to fit treatment into your active lifestyle, and they can work just as successfully as metal braces for almost any case.
The Benefits of Orthodontic Treatment for Adults
Orthodontic treatment is most commonly known for creating beautiful smiles, but the benefits go far beyond a patient’s cosmetic appearance!
Improved Oral Health
Brushing and flossing are an essential part of any dental hygiene routine, but when your teeth are crooked, crowded, or overlapping, they can be challenging to clean. This increases the risk of plaque and bacteria building up, potentially leading to tooth decay, gum disease, cavities, and gingivitis. Orthodontic treatment at Sandifer Orthodontics can move your teeth into straighter positions, making it easier to maintain an effective oral hygiene routine!
When your teeth and jaws are out of alignment, you might have difficulty correctly biting and chewing your food. If left untreated, this can lead to excessive wear and tear on your teeth. It may even lead to the muscles of the jaws weakening. This can cause painful chewing, exacerbating any issues you’re already having.
You may be surprised to find a connection between your stomach and your smile, but your teeth are a crucial component of the digestive process! Chewing your food is the first step of this process and the most important one. If you can’t chew properly due to misaligned teeth, it can affect your whole digestive system. When your teeth can’t properly break down food, it will slowly pass through the digestive system. Chewing may also be painful due to tooth or jaw pain, limiting how often you can eat.
The alignment of your teeth and jaws can also affect your speech. As an experienced orthodontist, Dr. Sandifer can identify any misalignment-related speech issues. She can also assess the severity of any problems and then devise the most effective solution for you based on your specific needs.
Better Jaw Alignment
Misaligned teeth can have a noticeable effect on your jaw muscles and joints. If the jaws compensate for wrong positioning, the joints will respond, but it will often be to a position that can cause further damage. We tend to see jaw issues and misaligned teeth present in a patient together. Some of the symptoms you may experience with improper jaw alignment are:
- headaches or migraines
- a jaw that seems to pop or “click”
- pain in the jaw, neck, or shoulders
- sleep disorders
A personalized treatment plan from Sandifer Orthodontics can help minimize or eliminate these symptoms by properly aligning your teeth and jaws. This approach will give you a smile that feels good, functions well, and looks beautiful!
Treatment Options for Adult Orthodontic Patients
It’s a great time to be an orthodontic patient of any age! Not so long ago, there were only a couple of options for anyone looking to improve the look and feel of their teeth. There are now various ways to get a beautiful and functional smile! We’re proud to offer a variety of affordable treatment options for our adult patients, including:
Damon metal braces
Traditional metal braces are the most widely used orthodontic appliance and come with a proven track record of success. While braces have been around for a long time, they’ve undergone some impressive changes in recent years. Damon metal braces are self-ligating, so there are fewer adjustment appointments, and you can get your smile more quickly than in the past! Metal braces can effectively treat a variety of orthodontic issues and are particularly useful in more severe or complex cases.
Clear braces function the same way metal braces do but come with the additional benefit of clear brackets. This offers a more subtle way to straighten teeth, especially when paired with clear, white, or tooth-colored elastics. The ceramic brackets we use with clear braces are slightly larger and more brittle than metal brackets, so Dr. Sandifer typically uses them more on the upper front teeth than the lower ones. Because they are much less visible than metal brackets, clear braces tend to be popular with our teen and adult patients!
Invisalign clear aligners
Instead of brackets and wires, the innovative Invisalign aligner system uses a series of customized clear aligners to shift the teeth over time. The aligners are designed to be removed when eating, drinking anything other than water, and brushing your teeth. This gives them an extra measure of freedom and flexibility that patients love! Dr. Sandifer also loves treating her adult patients with Invisalign clear aligners as they offer the most indiscrete option for her patients.
Compliance is an essential part of treatment with Invisalign aligners from Sandifer Orthodontics. You should wear your aligners for 20-22 hours throughout treatment to get the results you want. You are also responsible for switching each aligner out with the next in the series every 1 to 2 weeks. This allows your teeth to track correctly with the planned movements prescribed by Dr. Sandifer, and your compliance keeps the treatment plan progressing as it should be.
Get Your Best Smile with Adult Treatment from Sandifer Orthodontics
Like most things in life, different orthodontic treatments come with a list of pros and cons. Every treatment we offer won’t be suitable for everyone, so we encourage all of our adult patients to work with a trained and skilled orthodontist like Dr. Sandifer!
Your smile is as unique as you are, and we’ll never subject you to cookie-cutter service at Sandifer Orthodontics. Dr. Sandifer will build your customized treatment plan around your specific needs, lifestyle, and goals. This ensures a stress-free experience with long-lasting results you’ll love!
When you choose orthodontic treatment with Dr. Sandifer and the rest of our expert team, you’ll be making an intelligent investment in a smile that will boost your physical, emotional, and oral health. Are you ready to take the first step towards the confident smile you’ve always wanted? Get in touch today to schedule your FREE consultation with Sandifer Orthodontics!