I’m over 50. Aren’t I too old for braces?
Braces cost too much for ordinary people!
Getting braces hurts.
My teen doesn’t want a mouthful of metal!
Orthodontists hear comments like these all the time. The problem is they aren’t true. But, with so much information (and misinformation) out there, how are patients supposed to know what’s true and what isn’t as they make this important decision?
This article will put these myths about braces to rest. Read on to discover the truth about orthodontic treatment!
Myths About Orthodontic Treatment Resolved
It’s important to make decisions with accurate information. If you are considering orthodontic treatment, especially braces, here are the most common braces myths we want to clear up:
Myth #1: Braces Are Just For Kids
Put this myth to rest now! Later in life, people have unique orthodontic needs and many want to look better as they age. Adult orthodontic care can still help with that. Teeth are lost as people age and the surrounding teeth shift to fill those empty spaces. Or, pressure from the tongue and cheek muscles causes changes in how teeth are aligned.
An orthodontist has the training and experience to treat these complicated problems adults have. The American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) recommends correction for these issues, and braces or aligners are the best appliances to move teeth back into their proper positions.
Myth #2: Braces Are Painful
Braces shouldn’t be painful. There is no doubt there are periods of time during an orthodontic treatment plan when you may experience some discomfort.
For example, when braces are first fitted into your mouth and when they are adjusted, it takes a day or so for your teeth to adapt to the new alignment. But this is done gradually so there isn’t any significant pain. It’s also important to remember that orthodontic technology is constantly improving so braces are more comfortable than ever.
Myth # 3: Braces Are Too Expensive
Braces are no more expensive than any other large purchase that you decide has value for you. The cost can be alleviated with some advanced planning.
Most orthodontists offer financing plans. There are also dental insurance plans that cover at least part of the cost of braces. And some orthodontists give discounts to patients who can self-pay. Decide how you want to proceed with paying for braces, then set up free consultations to meet with several orthodontists to compare costs. You can then make a decision that is best for you and your budget.
This is an investment in your health that will pay off for the rest of your life!
Myth #4: Braces Mean Lots of Metal in the Mouth
False! Today’s orthodontic technology offers you many options for braces. And most alignment corrections can even be done using clear plastic aligners (like Invisalign) that are nearly invisible. Ceramic braces that are less visible than traditional metal braces are another choice as well. There is also the option of braces that are placed behind the teeth (lingual braces) if you are concerned about appearances.
So, don’t assume you will be presenting a mouthful of metal if you are considering braces. Get the smile you want or solve long-standing orthodontic issues without this concern stopping you!
Myth #5: Treatment With Braces Takes Years
All that new orthodontic technology discussed earlier also means a reduction in time with braces for many patients. The average time with traditional metal braces is roughly 18-24 months, but clear aligners usually mean a shorter treatment plan.
Your orthodontist will let you know the anticipated treatment period and will keep you updated along the way, too. Simple adjustments may take less than a year, while more complex corrections can take longer. Follow your orthodontist’s directions and you can look forward to the day the braces will be removed or the aligners can be discarded for good!
Myth #6: Braces Mean I Can’t Participate in All the Activities I Love
Not true! If children can sing and play sports and musical instruments wearing braces, adults can too! You will have to make some adjustments to accommodate life with braces but there is no reason to stay home and count the days until your braces come off.
If you play a sport, you will need to wear an orthodontic mouthguard that either fits over your braces or replaces your aligners during play. Singing and playing a musical instrument can also be adapted to wearing braces. As with anything worthwhile, there will be a period of adjustment but after that, enjoy your life!
Myth #7: Once My Braces Are Removed, My Teeth Will Be Straight Forever
Unfortunately, this isn’t true. Teeth continue to move throughout your life so your orthodontist will fit you with an orthodontic retainer to do just that: Retain the new, improved alignment of your teeth. If you follow your orthodontist’s instructions, your teeth will stay straight.
At first, you will be wearing the retainer more often during the first six months or so after your active orthodontic treatment. It takes some time for your teeth to settle into the new alignment. After that, you will probably only wear the retainer a few nights each week as you sleep. Getting braces was an investment of time and money, so don’t throw that away by not using the retainer as directed.
Bernstein Orthodontics Can Help You Choose the Best Braces For You
Anyone can benefit from orthodontic treatment! Adults and children can benefit from braces and now have many options available for types of treatment. Don’t let myths about braces stand in your way.
Here at Bernstein Orthodontics in Cary, NC, we will work with you to determine the best choice for your orthodontic needs, your budget, and your lifestyle. We have one priority: Providing you with the best orthodontic care in the area. Our experienced and compassionate team is committed to meeting your orthodontic needs with a personalized treatment plan that will achieve the best results.
Contact us today to schedule a consultation!