Smile - You're never too old to have straight teeth!
Why everyone with crooked teeth should consider orthodontics
Have you ever noticed that if you smile at a random stranger nine times out of ten they will smile back?
That’s because smiling is contagious and a recent study of adults showed that 47% of people notice the other person’s smile when they first meet. Not only is it contagious, but apparently it can make you look younger and thinner and it elevates your mood creating a sense of wellbeing. According to Ron Gutman, the author of Smile: The Astonishing Powers of a Simple Act, “British researchers found that one smile can generate the same level of brain stimulation as up to 2,000 bars of chocolate.” Now that fact alone pleases Dentists all over the world I can tell you!
But what if you aren’t happy with your smile?
Do you just grin and bear it (pardon the pun!) and go through life frowning? or is it time to turn that frown upside down? Sadly there are thousands of people who don’t like their smile but think that they are too old or it’s too expensive to do anything about it, well guess what? They are wrong on both counts.
Let’s talk about what you can do about it….
The phrase Orthodontics is very simply derived from the greek word ‘orthos' meaning ‘straight’ and ‘dontos’ meaning ‘tooth’ - so yes you got it, it’s all about teeth straightening.
Whether it’s about self-confidence and self-esteem or your teeth are affecting the way you live and eat then we can help. Don’t be put off if you think you are just being vain either, as overlapping, crooked teeth can lead to tooth decay if they’re difficult or impossible to brush and floss properly and the overlapping can also make shadowed teeth appear darker and discoloured.
So what are the benefits of having your teeth straightened?
Many people have crowded or crooked teeth, or their teeth don't meet correctly when they bite. These problems can mean that your teeth are more likely to become damaged or put a strain on your jaw muscles.
In some cases, abnormal development of the teeth and jaw can affect the shape of the face. Orthodontics can also be used to treat other health problems, such as a cleft lip and palate or cases of mild sleep apnoea.
The most common benefits of orthodontics include:
- correcting any dental crowding and straightening your teeth
- correcting your bite so the front and back teeth meet evenly
- reducing the chance of damage to any prominent teeth
- and improving your appearance, including your smile
Am I too old to have orthodontics?
Orthodontic treatment is usually only started after most of your adult teeth have started to come through, usually when you're about 12 years old but it depends on the number of adult teeth and the growth of your face and jaws.
If you are a bit older than that we can start your orthodontic treatment at any age, but do be aware that we won't start your treatment until you have a good standard of oral hygiene as orthodontic treatment can increase the risk of tooth decay.
What types of orthodontic treatment are there?
Orthodontics mainly uses braces to correct the position of the teeth. Your exact treatment will depend on the problems with your teeth.
In some cases, you may have to wear headgear at night, or have small pins placed temporarily in the jaw as well as a brace. You may also need to have some teeth removed as part of your treatment.
Why would I want to put myself through it?
The purpose of orthodontic treatment is to make the best of your teeth.
This includes straightening your teeth so you're able to care for your teeth and gums more easily, and improving your bite so you can eat more comfortably and of course your smile will benefit, too.
As I mentioned earlier, treatment almost always involves using braces to straighten crooked, crowded or protruding teeth, close gaps between teeth, and correct the bite so the top and bottom teeth meet when the mouth is closed.
Your braces can trap food and cause more plaque to build up than usual, so you'll need to take extra care with cleaning your teeth and you also need to watch what you eat – for example, avoid sugary foods and drinks.
What does it involve?
The first stage of treatment is to come in and meet Adriana, our Orthodontist who will assess the state of your teeth and how they're likely to develop.This usually involves taking X-rays, making plaster models, and taking photographs of your teeth. She will then give you some options and discuss the costs with you.
Treatment usually lasts from 18 months to 2 years, and you’ll need to visit us every 6 to 8 weeks to check how the treatment is progressing. Adriana will encourage you all the way and orthodontics treatment usually works very well, but you will need to stick with it for it to be successful.
What are the different treatments available?
Orthodontic treatment uses appliances to correct the position of the teeth.
The main types are:
- fixed braces – a non-removable brace made up of brackets that are glued to each tooth and linked with wires
- removable braces – usually plastic plates that cover the roof of the mouth and clip on to some teeth; they can only carry out very limited tooth movements but can often have a very subtle to near-invisible appearances, like Invisalign braces.
- functional appliances – a pair of removable plastic braces that are joined together or designed to interact together, and fit on to the upper and lower teeth
If you want to read more about the different types of appliances, check out our Honest Guide to Teeth Straightening.
How much does it cost?
This is the question everyone wants to ask and it is difficult to say as every case is different. If you are thinking about getting a straighter smile then the best thing to do is come in for a free consultation with Adriana. She will be able to discuss the options and the cost with you and bear in mind we can offer interest-free credit if it helps spread the cost for you. If you decide to go ahead and once you and Adriana are both happy with the treatment plan, she will place your appliances for you and you can start your journey to a beautiful new and healthy smile.
Don’t delay - book a free consultation today!
We are currently offering free Adult Orthodontic Assessments until the end of September so why not give us a call on 01392 278843 or book an appointment online (opens in a new tab) and let us help you have happy and healthy straighter teeth - now that would be something to smile about wouldn’t it?