So you’re sick to the buck teeth…. oops, back teeth with your unsightly smile. Don’t worry, you’re not alone in feeling this way. According to a recent survey, 55% of Aussie adults don’t like how their teeth look and a whopping 62% of us would certainly consider teeth straightening.
Orthodontics is a type of dentistry which corrects dental problems such as overbites, underbites, and malocclusion to create an even, straight smile and typically involves wearing braces.
There, we’ve said it – braces!
Now you can correct us if we’re wrong, but most adults when they think of braces turn their minds back to their childhood days when youngsters typically wore metal ‘train track’ braces and had to undergo all sorts of taunts from ‘metal mouth’ to ‘brace face’. So we totally understand why adults feel a certain amount of apprehension with regards to teeth straightening.
Why get your teeth straightened in the first place?
We know from experience that the reason most adults want their teeth straightening is so they can smile with confidence. We’d like to chip in at this point and say that from our perspective, there are at least 2 more important benefits to be had from straightening your teeth – namely a better bite and improved oral health. However we also know that the way your smile looks can be a big confidence boost.
So getting back to the dreaded subject of braces, let’s take a look at adult teeth straightening options and see if we can find one which may suit you. So, in no particular order…..
- Metal braces – Yes, we know they may be on your hate list but the fact remains that they are still one of the most affordable and effective methods of teeth straightening. Nowadays metal braces are lighter in weight and the brackets are smaller too, so they’re a little less showy and more comfortable than they once were. If you simply want to get on with teeth straightening and aren’t overly concerned with complete discretion, then these braces will fix most dental issues and won’t make such a large dent in your wallet either.
- Ceramic braces – These are a step up from metal braces and are a popular choice for those adults wanting to straighten their smile with a certain amount of discretion. They’re not quite as obvious as metal braces because the brackets are tooth coloured or clear, and there’s an option for tooth coloured wiring too. They do the same job as metal braces and work at the same pace to complete treatment.
Invisible teeth straightening
Getting your teeth straight doesn’t involve magic ….. or then again, perhaps it does. Thanks to a type of invisible teeth straightening method, absolutely no-one but you and your dentist need know that you’re receiving orthodontic treatment. In fact, lingual braces could be just what the doctor ordered!
What are lingual braces?
Lingual braces are different from all the other brace systems out there because they’re worn on the insides of your teeth instead of the outside. In other words, they fit behind your teeth instead of in front, so no one can see them.
As you might expect, they’re more complicated to make since they need to follow the exact contours of your teeth, to ensure both comfort and functionality. They’re also more difficult to adjust, and because of this, the cost is generally higher than it is for other types of braces. Lingual braces can also take longer to get used to because your tongue tends to get in the way of them. This means your speech may sound odd for a while, and you may find it more difficult to eat at first.
Is it a brace? No, it’s Invisalign!
If lingual braces don’t exactly float your boat, don’t worry because we’ve got one more teeth straightening option up our sleeves – Invisalign. To be honest with you, Invisalign isn’t really a brace in the true sense, although it works in the same way, to shift your teeth into their correct positions. You may have noticed that all the brace options we’ve been talking about so far have involved wearing just one device for the duration of your treatment – not so with Invisalign.
How Invisalign works
Invisalign treatment relates to a series of clear plastic trays, known as aligners, which are worn over your teeth in a similar manner to a gumshield. We say ‘series’ because it’s the complexity of your particular dental issue which determines how many trays you’ll need to wear over the course of treatment. It could be up to 48 – it could be far less. Your dentist won’t know for sure until your treatment plan has been completed.
Each aligner is made of clear BPA-free plastic so it’s hard to spot that you’re wearing them, and because there are no wires or brackets involved, the treatment is more comfortable compared to metal braces. During the course of treatment, you’ll wear each set of aligners for about 2 weeks before replacing them with the next set in the series. Each tray moves your teeth to a pre-determined position by up to 0.25mm. By the time you’ve worked your way through each aligner, your teeth should be perfectly straight and even. Hurray!
What about cost? How much are braces?
This is a tricky one to answer because there are several factors involved such as the type of orthodontic treatment you’re receiving, the duration of your treatment, and even the overheads of your dental clinic. As a general guide, any of the above treatments for a 12 to 24 month period could set you back between $4,500 to $13,000 but because each case is different the only way to know the costs is to speak to your dentist.
Are you ready for teeth straightening?
If you’re ready to take the plunge, then the first step to achieving your new straight smile is to come and speak to our friendly and experienced dentists. We’ll examine your teeth and discuss the best options for your needs, lifestyle, and budget. Call Dental 266 today on (02) 9051 0600