Orthodontics for grown-ups? These days, it’s not at all unusual. More and more adults are seeking orthodontic treatment and sporting braces, for a number of good reasons.
Some adults are now able to address problems their families couldn’t afford to correct when they were young. Others find that their teeth have shifted over time, simply because of aging or because—despite having orthodontic treatment earlier—they didn’t wear a retainer long enough. Teeth that are misaligned, crowded, or spaced too far apart make gum problems more likely. As lifespans have increased and we can keep our teeth in good condition longer, many feel that it’s worth investing time, effort, and money to enjoy optimal dental health, feel good, and look good.
Braces for Adults
Braces for adults work the same for adults as for kids, with a few additional considerations. Since adult jawbones are no longer growing, the process can take a little longer; most adults need to wear their braces for one to two years to achieve the correction they want. Sometimes surgery may be recommended.
Healthy Gums are a Prerequisite for Adult Orthodontics
Healthy gums are a prerequisite, so adults who have gum disease need to have that treated first, before getting orthodontic treatment. The orthodontist will evaluate the likelihood of such complications and carefully monitor the teeth during treatment.
Appearance tends to be more of an issue for adults than it is for younger patients. Today there are alternatives that are much less obtrusive than traditional metal braces. Some are made of clear materials, some attach to the back of the teeth, and some require no elastics—see Types of Braces, Damon Braces, and Invisalign Aligners for details.
Cost of Braces for Adults
How much do braces cost for adults? As with ortho treatment in general, the cost of adult orthodontics depends on how much correction is needed and how long it takes. The less-visible modern alternatives to metal braces—preferred by many adults—are typically more expensive than the traditional type. The cost of dental braces for adults ranges between $2,000 and $6,000.