Adult Orthodontic Treatment: How to Enhance Oral Health and Confidence

If you are an adult with crooked teeth or a misaligned bite, chances are you’ve been considering adult orthodontic treatment for a long time. Studies have proven that adults who complete orthodontic treatment have significantly better oral health-related quality of life (OHRQoL) than patients who forego treatment. You’re never too old to undergo therapy with a Melbourne orthodontist to give you the perfect smile you’ve always dreamed of. Here’s a look at how orthodontic treatment enhances oral health and confidence.

Orthodontic Treatment and Self-Esteem

A study published in the European Journal of Orthodontics examined the impacts of orthodontic treatment on patients’ self-esteem and quality of life. Although it used a small sample size of 52 patients, the results were universal. Every patient who completed orthodontic treatment enjoyed a better quality of life than patients still awaiting treatment. In addition, every treated patient enjoyed much better self-esteem, which carries through to many other areas of life. 

Reasons to Seek Adult Orthodontic Treatment

One of the main reasons to seek adult orthodontic treatment is that the alignment of their teeth or bite can make them awkward or uncomfortable in social and professional settings. Crooked teeth or a misaligned bite can make it difficult for a person to chew their food correctly and can also make it painful to eat. We subconsciously view people with a lovely smile as more trustworthy, which is beneficial in job interviews and face-to-face interactions at work.

There are also good health reasons to seek treatment with an orthodontist in Melbourne. Having overcrowded or crooked teeth can make it more challenging to keep them clean through brushing and flossing. Crooked teeth are more likely to lead to problems like gum disease and tooth decay. An overbite, when the upper teeth overlap the lower ones, can lead to unnecessary wear and tear on the lower teeth. An underbite, where the lower teeth overlap the upper ones, can lead to difficulty chewing and speaking.

Many misalignments and bite problems can also lead to jaw pain or temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder. In adults, all these conditions can be treated and corrected with traditional braces, clear aligners such as Invisalign, or other methods or appliances.

Options for Adults Orthodontic Treatments

Braces: Traditional braces are one of the most common treatments orthodontists use. They are the fastest and most efficient methods for correcting severe malocclusions and bite problems. A series of brackets is attached to the teeth, and an archwire is threaded through the brackets to apply pressure to the teeth. Repeat appointments with the orthodontist to keep the teeth shifting until they reach the desired location. Traditional metal and wire braces are the most common, although some adults prefer ceramic braces. This type of brace is color-matched to the teeth and less noticeable.

Invisalign: Invisalign uses a series of clear aligners custom-fitted to your teeth. They apply constant pressure like braces to shift the teeth to their new locations. Unlike braces, Invisalign is nearly invisible. The aligners can also be removed for up to two hours daily, making it easier for patients to eat and brush their teeth. Invisalign can correct mild to moderate problems with a patient’s teeth. It is a prevalent treatment because no one can tell you’re wearing the aligners. 

Retainers: After undergoing treatment with braces or Invisalign, your teeth will want to move back to their original positions naturally. To prevent this from happening, your orthodontist will fit you with a custom retainer to be worn at night. The retainer ensures that your teeth don’t start moving again.

Night Guards: A night guard is a custom mouthpiece that your orthodontist can create. Some patients experience bruxism, or teeth grinding, at night. This can damage the enamel on the teeth and lead to jaw pain or other problems. A night guard is worn to protect teeth from damage while sleeping. 

Those are the most common treatments available from Reddick Orthodontics. We also have other types of appliances and treatments that may be more suitable for your condition. Contact us today to schedule an appointment. We’ll work with you to restore your smile and your self-confidence!