Am I Too Old For Orthodontic Treatment?

In a perfect world, we would all have a perfect smile. While a lucky few of us are born with a naturally gorgeous grin, many more people have crooked teeth, misaligned jaws, and various other orthodontic issues to deal with. Thankfully, modern technology has  made it easier than ever for patients of all ages to achieve a beautiful, healthy smile! 

Many people believe that braces and aligners are just for teens, but this is an outdated idea. While teenagers do make up a large percentage of orthodontic patients, we’re seeing more children and adults close that gap every year. In fact, about one in every three orthodontic patients today is over the age of 18! If you’ve spent a lifetime feeling self-conscious about the way your smile looks or feels, there’s never been a better time to explore how treatment with Beim Orthodontics can straighten your teeth and improve your oral health.   

Keep reading below to learn why you’re never too old to transform your smile and how we can help you do that! 

Why are so many adults choosing orthodontic treatment?

As we get older, we often begin to gain a clearer understanding of the link that exists between oral health and total body health. This knowledge often encourages adult patients to seek out dental or orthodontic treatment that will help them keep their teeth and gums healthy, and their mouths fully functional as well. 

Many of our adult patients received orthodontic treatment earlier in life, but never completed it. We can help them complete the treatment process, or even start it from scratch again. Touch-up treatment is also common. Even if treatment has been completed at a younger age, the teeth can still shift over time due to age, genetics, or improper retainer use. There are multiple ways Dr. Beim can treat these patients. He may choose to do nothing more than monitor the teeth over time to see what they do, provide the patient with new aligners, or even re-treat them. 

Some adults have never had orthodontic treatment before but want to improve the cosmetic appearance of their smile. This is a great idea, and one we fully support! Multiple studies have shown that a beautiful smile can boost a patient’s confidence and have a positive impact in their lives, both personally and professionally. 

Whatever reasons you have for looking into orthodontic treatment, we have a number of affordable options available to you, from traditional metal braces to Invisalign clear aligners.

What are your unique orthodontic needs?

When you visit our Lake Mary office for your free consultation, Dr. Beim will be looking at your overall suitability for orthodontic treatment. One of the biggest factors involved in this is the type and degree of the alignment issue. 

As you reach adulthood, your bones stop growing and it becomes more of a challenge to make structural changes to your mouth. As long as treatment won’t require a major structural change to your mouth, braces or aligners will usually be an excellent option. The majority of adults that we treat have alignment issues that can be easily corrected! 

Occasionally, however, we come across someone with a very serious misalignment, malformed jaw, or other significant structural issues. In these cases, surgery may be needed first to correct the underlying issue before we can use an orthodontic appliance.

During your first visit, our treatment coordinator or orthodontic assistant will take some digital photographs of your mouth so we can get a good luck at your teeth, jaws, and facial soft tissue. These images will help Dr. Beim determine whether you’re a good fit for treatment now or if any surgical correction needs to be done beforehand.

What treatment options are available to adult patients?

If you’re considering orthodontic treatment, you may be concerned that your only option is traditional braces. While today’s braces are lighter, more comfortable, and more efficient than previous models, offer alternatives for our more image-conscious patients, too! Here’s a look at the exciting treatment options we have available for adult patients here at Beim Orthodontics

Traditional metal braces

Traditional metal braces are one of our most popular and efficient treatment options. They are especially effective in treating severe or complicated cases successfully. Modern braces use high-quality stainless steel, and innovations in the design mean they’re much more comfortable than previous versions. The total treatment time also tends to be shorter than it used to be with metal braces, although this will depend on your particular needs.

Clear braces

These function in basically the same way traditional braces do but use clear ceramic brackets instead of metal ones. They can be a good choice for adults who want a subtle option for straightening their teeth. When paired with clear, white, or tooth-colored elastics, they’re barely noticeable! While clear braces are as effective as their metal counterparts at correcting orthodontic issues, the ceramic brackets do tend to be a bit more delicate. For this reason, we generally only recommend them to our older teen and adult patients.

Invisalign clear aligner therapy

The Invisalign system is our most popular alternative to traditional braces! It uses a series of clear removable aligners to move the teeth instead of brackets and wires. These clear trays are made of a soft thermoplastic resin and custom-designed to fit snugly (but comfortably) over the teeth. Because they’re able to be removed for short periods of time, Invisalign aligners can offer adult patients a bit more freedom and flexibility than braces.

Any of these options can be a great fit for you! Dr. Beim will always take your particular needs, goals, and lifestyle into account before recommending the best treatment for your unique smile.

Am I Too Old For Orthodontic Treatment?

How long will adult orthodontic treatment take?

Any type of orthodontic treatment requires a time commitment. Because everyone responds to treatment in their own way, there’s no “one size fits all” answer for how long a patient will need to be in braces or aligners. On average, however, we’ve found that treatment for most adults will last anywhere from 18-36 months.

You’ll see Dr. Beim for regular checkups throughout the treatment process. These are usually scheduled for every 4-8 weeks or so, depending on your treatment plan. The visits tend to be pretty quick, but they’re an essential part of your orthodontic journey! It’s important to keep up with them, so if you’re not able to make an appointment for any reason, we simply ask that you let us know as soon as possible so we can get you rescheduled. This will help us keep your treatment plan on track!

Get the smile you’ve always wanted with Beim Orthodontics

You’re never too old to achieve the healthy smile you deserve! If you’re ready to take the first step towards improved oral health and beautifully aligned teeth, get in touch today to schedule your FREE consultation with Dr. Beim