Many adults feel that once high school is over, so is the opportunity to fix their teeth. After all, nothing says teenager more than braces.
But having straight teeth, a healthy bite, and a beautiful smile is something that anyone can achieve, no matter the age. Adults can avoid the dreaded “metal mouth” by looking into other options, such as Invisalign. Here’s what you should know about this popular and effective alternative to classic metal braces.
Invisalign is “invisible”
Unlike traditional braces that are comprised of very visible metal brackets and wires, Invisalign is practically invisible. This makes it a more appealing option for people who don’t want to draw attention to themselves, who are concerned with how metal braces will look in their work environment, or who would simply feel embarrassed to wear metal braces as an adult.
Invisalign aligners are removable
Unlike classic braces, which are fixed to the teeth for the duration of treatment, Invisalign is removable. Treatment is carried out by wearing a series of clear aligners that gradually move teeth over time. These aligners can (and should) be taken out to eat, drink, brush, and floss. This means that no foods are off-limits, as they are with metal braces, and keeping teeth clean and healthy is much easier compared to traditional braces.
Invisalign costs about the same but takes less time
Some patients are surprised to discover that in many cases, treatment with Invisalign costs roughly the same amount as with traditional braces. They’re also surprised to learn that Invisalign may take less time to straighten teeth, averaging 9-15 months, compared to 24 months for metal braces.
Is Invisalign right for you?
It’s important to understand that while Invisalign has many positives, it’s not right for everyone. Some dental conditions are best treated with other gear such as metal braces and headgear. It’s also important to be honest with yourself about how committed you are to seeing the process through; during treatment, aligners must be worn for 20-22 hours per day. Less than that risks making treatment time longer. Finally, unlike metal braces which are bonded to the teeth, Invisalign aligners are removable and can be accidentally lost. These are some things to keep in mind when considering Invisalign for yourself.
For patients who are good candidates, though, Invisalign is a highly effective way of straightening teeth, improving the bite, and achieving a beautiful smile. Don’t let age stop you. If you’ve been out of high school for a while now but you’re not happy with your teeth, talk to your dentist or orthodontist. It’s never too late for a beautiful smile.