How Do Braces Work for Adults?

When people think of braces, they often think of the often-awkward transition many children make from a metal-mouthed teenager to a young adult. However, it's not just adolescents who desire straight teeth, and if you're an adult who may have missed the chance to have braces during your teen years, it's important to realize that it's not too late! Straightening teeth is an important aspect of North Pole dental care because, in many cases, braces will help protect your teeth by preventing unhealthy wear from crooked and misaligned teeth. Here's what you need to know about getting braces as an adult.

Increasing Popularity

Many adults worry that they'll feel embarrassed and self-conscious about braces. However, more and more adults are choosing to straighten their teeth, whether they need to fix an improper bite or they just want their teeth to look more uniform. Braces are becoming more popular for adults because, with advances in dental treatments and better education for the patients, people are keeping their teeth much longer than they did a generation ago. There's no reason to assume straightening teeth is a waste of money because you'll eventually end up with dentures because that's simply not the case anymore.


How Straightening Works

There are a few different methods you can choose to have your teeth straightened, but each type works in a similar way. The straightening procedure places constant pressure on as many teeth as need to be shifted. The side pressure causes the root to press against the bone that it's anchored in. This constant pressure will eventually cause the bone to dissolve, which allows the tooth to move into the desired position. New bone will eventually build up in the area that was vacated. A dentist trained in teeth straightening will create a detailed plan to help correct the concerns you have. There are a few different straightening options that your dentist may recommend.

Traditional Braces

Traditional braces are the basic metal braces that most people associate with orthodontia. These include brackets, a bonding material, archwire, and ligature elastic. The brackets are bonded to each tooth, and the archwire runs across the brackets to place force on the teeth. The elastics hold the bracket to the wire. These types of braces require frequent visits to adjust the wire to help the teeth move into the correct position.

Ceramic Braces

Ceramic braces are the same as traditional braces, but instead of using a metal bracket, they use ceramic brackets that match the color of the teeth more closely. These are less visible so they can help some people feel less self-conscious. They're a more expensive option than metal braces.

Lingual Braces

Lingual braces are even more difficult to see because they're placed on the back of the teeth rather than the front. Although these work as effectively as the other types of braces, they can irritate some people's tongues and make it difficult to speak clearly.

Clear Aligners

Clear aligners are a good choice if you have minor adjustments to be made that are mainly aesthetic. There are a series of aligners that you wear for a while until your teeth have shifted enough to move into the next phase. An advantage of these is that you can take them out to eat, brush, and floss. To schedule an appointment with a dentist in Fairbanks, AK, to see if braces are right for you, contact North Pole Dental Workshop today by calling 907-490-4650.