6 Reasons to Embrace Orthodontic Care
Taking care of your teeth is one of the best things you can do for your body. Your teeth provide you with a means to eat, to communicate, and to display emotions. A bad or unhealthy smile can leave a long-lasting impression on people, but it can also create significant health problems down the line.
What Is Orthodontic Care?
Orthodontics is a dental specialty focusing on the position, spacing, and alignment of teeth. One of the most common orthodontic treatments is braces, but orthodontists can use a host of different methods to get your teeth in line.
Orthodontics help you present your best face to the world by ensuring that your teeth are straight, functional and working their hardest for you (instead of against you). If you have been considering having orthodontic work done but are still on the fence about it, read below for 6 top reasons to embrace orthodontic care.
1. Orthodontics can improve your smile.
Having a straight and attractive smile can help you make a great first impression. It can improve your self-esteem and the way you present yourself to others. If a whitening treatment hasn’t solved your smile woes, you should consult with an orthodontist to see what else can be done. And if you need other orthodontic treatments, it could be a good idea to tackle aesthetics at the same time.
A misaligned jaw and teeth can actually impact your overall face shape as well, not just your smile. You might be surprised by the difference once your bite has been fixed.
2. Orthodontics can improve how your teeth function.
While a great smile is amazing on its own, that’s not all those orthodontic treatments can provide. Sometimes teeth don’t grow quite the way they are supposed to; you may have a severe underbite, overbite, or issues with crowding. An offset bite can lead to jaw pain and headaches, but an orthodontist can take care of the problem and put an end to the tension in no time at all.
Aside from pain, issues with the alignment and spacing of your teeth can lead to speech problems, poor overall oral health, and inefficient digestion. Widely spaced or tightly crowded teeth can make it hard to brush or floss correctly and lead to bacteria build-ups and dental decay.
3. It’s not just for teenagers anymore.
While it is best to start most orthodontic treatments at an early age, more and more adults are starting to seek out orthodontic care. In fact, ¼ of all orthodontic patients are over the age of 21. Some benefits to orthodontic care in adulthood include a better understanding of the importance of these procedures and an increased likelihood of good post-treatment maintenance and care.
There have also been some great advancements in style for adult braces. You are not limited to the traditional metal wires and can opt for a more invisible look if desired.
Some aspects of adult orthodontic care can be more challenging though. Because the jaw has stopped growing, the orthodontist has a more difficult time directing jaw alignment. Adult braces are definitely effective for improving your smile and bite, but the process just might take more time.
Additionally, as an adult, you may already be seeing the effects of years of poor dental hygiene. You may already be suffering from grinding or other bad oral habits such as nail-biting. Adults are also more likely to have gum disease, which will be an obstacle to obtaining orthodontic care. Before treatment, your orthodontist will want to ensure that your gums are healthy, so you may be asked to seek dental treatment first.
4. The results are long-lasting.
You may be looking at the investment in time and money that orthodontic care will require and wonder if it’s really worth it. Will you just have to do it again in 5 years? Typically, orthodontic treatment should last indefinitely if you work to maintain the results through good dental practices and retainers. A 6 to 30-month treatment plan should be all that is required for a bright new smile.
5. It doesn’t hurt that much
There are a lot of misconceptions of the orthodontics industry. One such misconception is that orthodontic procedures are always very painful. Some of these ideas have been held onto over decades, but modern orthodontic treatment has come a really long way. With braces, for example, advances in technology have made them smaller and significantly more comfortable than the braces your mother or grandmother may have worn. You will experience soreness for the first few days, but shouldn’t notice them at all after that. You can also use bits of wax to cushion any spots that experience rubbing or discomfort.
6. It is more affordable than ever!
Orthodontic treatments also have a reputation for being extremely costly. While the price can sometimes be high, you have to remember that it is for a lifetime of better teeth. If you don’t have to repeat the procedures, a one-time investment in your teeth is almost always worth it.
And truthfully, the cost of orthodontic procedures is often less than that of the dental procedures required to correct the same issues when they become severe. So you can save money in the long run by having an orthodontist tackle an issue in the early stages.
Brushing and flossing aren’t always enough to protect your teeth. Sometimes you need a major intervention to correct an unsightly or unhealthy problem. That is where orthodontists come in. Good orthodontic care will fix a number of issues that may be causing you pain or embarrassment, so don’t wait too long!
If you are unsure of how to begin, visit your regular dentist. Dentists and orthodontists often work hand-in-hand to make sure their patients receive a comprehensive and team-based approach to treatment. You may also want to seek recommendations from friends or family who have experienced similar problems to see how they proceeded.
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