The thought of getting braces can be daunting for most people. We often think of them as something we have in our teens, but these days more and more mature ages are electing to get Adult Braces to straighten their teeth.
If you’re an adult, and are considering braces, there are a few things you’ll want to know first.
5 Things to Think About Before You Get Braces
Teeth Can Shift at Any Age
It’s a common misconception that moving or ‘shifting’ teeth are something you only experience as you go through adolescence.
Although, there are a few factors that can cause your teeth to shift, regardless of age or level of health:
- Natural growth
- Trauma and injury
- Reduced bone density
- Not using a retainer after having previously worn braces
- Periodontal disease
The issues arising from shifting teeth aren’t simply aesthetic. Crooked, crowded and overlapping teeth are harder to clean, as food stuck in nooks and crannies can be difficult to dislodge.
Taking care of your dental hygiene is important, as bacteria build up can damage both your teeth and gums and may result in problems like bad breath, oral infection and gum disease.
Braces Aren’t What They Used to Be
Today, braces are more affordable and are available in a range of styles allowing for discreet and comfortable wear.
Options available include:
|Metal Braces||Most common. |
Fitted on the anterior (front) of the teeth.
|Ceramic Braces||Less visible than the metal option, though not as durable.|
|Concealed Braces||Similar to the metal option, although these braces are fitted to the back of the teeth.|
|Invisible Aligners||Removable ‘trays’ which are wire and bracket free|
The last option is great for those who competing in contact sports, as the aligners can be removed prior to physical activity. There are also fewer restrictions with this option when it comes to eating, brushing and flossing.
Let Your Orthodontist Know About Your Allergies
Some people may experience an allergic reaction to the materials used in their braces.
If you’re sensitive to substances like latex or nickel, let your orthodontist know beforehand and they will be able to find a suitable replacement.
If you suddenly experience issues like:
- A large number of mouth sores
- Respiratory issues
Make sure you contact your orthodontist immediately for an assessment.
Foods to Avoid
There are a few eating restrictions when it comes to braces that are fitted to your teeth.
To prolong durability, and reduce the build up of unwanted bacteria and plaque, you should abstain from eating the following:
- Sugary foods
- Sticky foods
- Chewing Gum
- Hard food items
- Uncooked ingredients
- After Care
After your braces have been removed, you’ll be required to wear a retainer, which will maintain the work your braces have done and limit shifting of your teeth in the future.
The type of retainer you use will be at the discretion of your orthodontist and you may be required to wear it at all times for a few months after your braces have been removed.
After this time, you may only need to wear the retainer at select times, depending on your orthodontist’s recommendation.
It is important you keep your retainer hygienic, cleaning it regularly with an antibacterial solution to protect your mouth from infection.