They’ve been around for a long time and for a very good reason. Braces can correct a number of issues and result in a set of perfect, movie-star teeth. Typically braces are utilized in order to align your teeth for a perfect look and bite but there are other reasons why you might want to take advantage of what braces can offer. Let’s talk about reasons you need to get braces so that you can decide if they might just be a good fit for you or for your child!
What are the most common reasons to get braces?
Most commonly braces are going to be employed for malocclusion, which is a misalignment between the upper and lower teeth. Not just a cosmetic issue, this can cause an imperfect bite, causing teeth to fit poorly together and resulting in eventual damage. As we mentioned, however, there are a number of other reasons why you might want to consider braces as a solution. Let’s discuss these in a little more depth.
Braces for usage beyond standard malocclusion
Beyond simple and more complex alignment issues from a cosmetic perspective, braces have been used to treat a number of other maladies quite successfully through improvement of alignment and bite. They may be employed, for instance, to treat the following:
- Tooth grinding – Improper alignment of your teeth can lead to grinding them together, reducing the lifespan of those pearly whites. Your orthodontist can help this issue by improving your bite slowly with braces.
- Speech impediments – With severe malocclusion speech impediments can be an issue and while it’s not an overnight fix, proper alignment of the teeth can correct this in some cases.
- Sleep apnea – A misaligned bite can lead to snoring and poor sleep as a result. Your orthodontist can help this with braces in the long run and in the immediate future via a mouthpiece for sleeping.
- Chewing issues – A misaligned bite is not good for chewing. Aside from the inefficiency, it can lead to biting the tongue or the sides of the mouth so this can be quite a painful issue. Your orthodontist can definitely help with this.
- Jaw pain (TMJ) – Misaligned teeth can result in poor distribution of pressures throughout the jaw, resulting in pain when eating or talking. Braces are quite effective then assisting with this.
What is the best age for braces?
Your orthodontist is equipped to perform screenings on children as young as 7 years of age. While this may seem quite an early time to consider braces, think about this. At a young age there is less of a stigma that is associated with them and misalignment issues, caught early, are going to potentially take less time to correct That said, braces are not just limited to the young. If you are an adult and would like to have the most perfect smile that you can attain then a consultation with your orthodontist is highly recommended. It is never too late to work on your smile!
What is involved in an Orthodontist consultation for braces?
Your initial consultation is generally a matter of visual examination only in order to assess your facial structure in relation to your teeth. An Orthodontist will be able to quickly determine if you might benefit from braces and if you agree to it then further examination may be done. The second examination is more complex, consisting of X-rays, photographs, and creating models of your teeth so that your Orthodontist can
“Customize a strategy and solution to employ braces to straighten your teeth.”
customize a strategy and solution to employ braces to straighten your teeth. Typically at this point they can offer you a plan or schedule an appointment in the near future to discuss the findings from the collected data. Your Orthodontist can then tell you how long you will need to wear them and a little more about what you can expect.
How long will I have to wear my braces?
While in more extreme cases of malocclusion you might have to wear them longer, the average time that you will have to wear braces is typically 18 month to 2 years. Your Orthodontist will be able to give you a ‘ballpark figure’ in regards to time and as you will have a number of visits to ensure perfect tension and alignment is in place they will be able to reaffirm the time period as you go.
Can I get braces for free?
As braces can be relatively expensive (with the most basic starting at around $6000 dollars plus the accompanying charges for follow-up visits) then you may want to consider assistance if the cost proves to be prohibitive for the care which you require. While some assistance programs may be able to cover all of the cost of basic braces if you do not qualify for these, then you might also consider utilizing the following:
- 2 year payment plan – Many Orthodontists will offer payment plans if you do not have insurance to cover the braces. Check with your Orthodontist and see, as braces can be quite affordable when the payments are spaced over a 2 year period.
- Utilizing Dental schools – Many Orthodontic Dental schools offer discounted treatment which you can get on certain days. This treatment is done by advanced students, supervised by a seasoned Orthodontist, so this is a great way to get treatment at a fraction of the cost.
- Local dental assistance programs – Many local non-profit groups and churches offer assistance programs for dental needs. Check locally to seee if you can take advantage!
- Credit options – Depending on your interest rate, your credit card might be a good option is you are unable to find other assistance options.
Today we’ve discussed the most common reasons why you might need braces. Your smile is important and while 18 months seems like a long time, consider this:
Your Hollywood smile could last a lifetime!