I’m too old for metal braces, what’s the alternative?
Contrary to popular opinion, age is not a strong factor when it comes to braces. At least, it is not a strong factor by itself. Therefore, you are never really too old for braces.
There are, however, other things that might pose problems and these correlate with age. These include gum problems as well as bone problems at the root level. Older people are also very likely to have gaps and severe misalignments between teeth that make braces difficult.
Fortunately, there are still other treatment options available. These are all quite flexible and use devices that will not disrupt your daily routine. Consider exploring these and don’t deny yourself the benefits of a straighter smile.
- Clear Braces
A great example of clear braces is Invisalign. Unlike normal braces, clear braces are used as a set of varying aligners. Patients can also remove them fairly easily at the end of each day. Each tray in the set is generally worn for two weeks. The total length of this program can vary depending on what you are trying to treat. However, they are capable of addressing everything from mild overbite to severely crooked teeth.
While this appears to be the popular alternative, the effectiveness of retainers is considerably weaker compared to braces. In fact, they are usually recommended only after braces have successfully remedied a major misalignment. On the other hand, this makes retainers more ideal for those who only have mild problems with teeth position. If you feel that your teeth could simply need a little bit more straightening, then a cheap retainer is enough.
Headgear is often recommended for bigger misalignments, but it is not necessary to wear them at all times. Most orthodontists these days will recommend that headgear be worn only for a set number of hours to avoid straining. This usually leads to headgear being used while sleeping and you never have to worry about people seeing you wear one.
Again, age is not a big factor, but there can still be other issues that you need to check to see if you are really not fit to use braces. Consult doctors and dentists about any possible gum problems you might have or any bone complications that run in your family.
There is also nothing wrong when considering cost and convenience. Treatments are less likely to work if you are not feeling the least bit comfortable about them. As with any dental problem, there is no one-size-fits-all solution to crooked teeth. Get a better understanding of what is wrong with yours before considering alternatives.