I am proud to say that I have all my own teeth at the age of 65. While that may not sound unusual to some people, everyone in my family who is my age or older wears dentures. I always tell people that that flossing is the key to good dental health. I have arthritis in my hands, but I don't let it keep me from flossing every day. My trick is to use those little "flossers" you can buy at the drug store. They have plastic handles floss stretched out on top of the handle. These make flossing easier on days when my arthritis is acting up. I started this blog to let other people know that they can keep their teeth healthy into old age when they take care of them. If you have hand pain, find ways to make flossing easier, like I did.
Orthodontic treatment is an option for anyone with crooked, crowded teeth or misaligned jawbones. An orthodontic specialist or even your general dentist can help you find the orthodontic treatment that can address your concerns. These are four factors that can affect your orthodontic treatment:
People can fix their orthodontic problems at any age. However, people who begin treatment in their teen years, before their bones have fully hardened, may have a faster, easier treatment process. If you're a parent considering getting braces for your child, you should know that the teen years are an excellent time to begin. Teenagers can begin orthodontic treatment as soon as all of their permanent teeth grow in. In special cases, dentists may agree to begin orthodontic treatment sooner to correct serious jaw alignment issues.
2. Jaw Size
The size of your jaw can affect your orthodontic treatment. People with small or narrow jaws are more likely to experience overcrowding of their teeth. Dentists can remedy this problem by performing dental extractions or widening the jaw itself using a palate expander. People with wide jaws may also experience orthodontic problems. However, these problems often pertain to tooth misalignment and can usually be remedied with braces or clear aligners.
3. Jaw Position
Your jaw size is not the only bone factor that can affect your orthodontic treatment. The position of your jaw will also determine the type of treatment you need. Overbites and underbites are common dental problems that are sometimes caused by upper or lower jaws that protrude. This anatomical problem can be remedied with the use of headgear and dental rubber bands. Dental rubber bands and orthodontic headgear both require a high degree of patient compliance, so it's wise to ensure that you are ready for the commitment before undergoing orthodontic treatment.
4. Treatment Preferences
Your preferences also play a role in the type of orthodontic treatment that you receive. Some people prefer the affordability of traditional metal braces. Metal braces are a time-honored way to correct overbites, underbites, and teeth misalignments. However, some people have aesthetic concerns that preclude the use of metal braces. In this case, ceramic braces can be used as an alternative. Ceramic braces follow the same principle as metal braces, consisting of ceramic brackets that are affixed to the teeth and connected with white wires. Clear aligners also offer a discreet option for teeth realignment. Clear aligners, such as Invisalign, are removable orthodontic devices that can move teeth into alignment over a period of several months.
Contact your dentist to learn more about orthodontic treatments.