We’re treating more and more adult patients today, and it’s not hard to figure out why. Appliances that are barely noticeable have been developed such as Invisalign® – to give adults more discreet choices when it comes to orthodontic treatment. Many adults realize that investing in a smile makeover can have significant benefits, socially and professionally. Straightening teeth can be an important part of that confidence-boosting makeover process.
Healthy teeth can be moved at any age, so there’s no such thing as being too old for orthodontic treatment. However, orthodontic treatment for adults is different in two important respects: The growth and development of the jaws is complete in adults, so changes in actual jaw structure can’t be accomplished with orthodontic appliances in the way they can with a growing child.
The goal of orthodontics is to correct a malocclusion – a bad bite. Teeth may be crowded and crooked or the upper and lower jaws may be out of alignment. Occasionally, even when teeth appear straight, the patient may have a misaligned bite which may cause further dental problems. Malocclusions may be inherited, may be developmental issues, or may be caused by poor oral habits.
Orthodontic treatment seeks to address any or all of these problems. The goal of orthodontic treatment is not only to create an attractive smile, but to develop a bite which can promote oral health. Straight teeth are a lot easier to keep clean. Misaligned, crowded teeth are much more difficult to maintain and can lead to tooth decay and periodontal disease.
Adults these days are now opting for Invisalign®, it’s the clear alternative to braces. Adults can gradually straighten their teeth without anyone noticing that they are undergoing orthodontic treatment. Invisalign® works to correct many different types of malocclusions through the use of a series of clear plastic trays called aligners. Invisalign® was developed to eliminate the use of unsightly metal brackets and wires and allow orthodontic treatment to occur almost “invisibly.”