There is often a misconception that you can be too old or that your child is too young for an orthodontic evaluation and treatment.This may be due to the fact that orthodontic treatment is oftenprovided during the teenager years.
However, there is no age barrier to improving your dental health. The Australian Society of Orthodontists recommends that children be evaluated for orthodontic treatment between eight and ten years of age. Early assessment helps to detect teeth and bite abnormalities and allows your dentist and orthodontist to prepare a treatment plan.
For those beyond the teenage years, orthodontic treatment can provide health benefits and a smile that you will be happy to show.
Orthodontics – health as well as cosmetic benefits
Historically, the perception of orthodontics is that it is used solely for cosmetic purposes to improve the appearance of a smile. No-one can deny that orthodontic treatment can significantly improve the physical appearance of the mouth and teeth, restoring a person’s confidence. However, less commonly understood is the fact that orthodontics can help to address a variety of health issues in adults as well as children.
Thehealth issues that orthodontics can assist to improve include:
- difficulty with chewing and biting
- difficulty with breathing normally
- difficulty with swallowing
- snoring and sleep apnoea
- teeth crowding, overbite and cross-bite which can injure the jaw and/or interior of the mouth
- malformed and incorrectly positioned teeth which can disfigure the face and mouth
- missing teeth resulting from injury or decay
- speech problems
Understanding the connection between orthodontics and these health issues can increase the effectiveness of your dental care plan as well as improve your general well-being.
An orthodontic assessment is your starting point
Whether your priority is restoring your smile and self-confidence or addressing a dental health issue, the benefits of orthodontics begin with an assessment. Your orthodontist will consult with you to develop a treatment plan designed to give you the results you want.
Along with traditional metal braces, alternative treatment options include:
- ceramic braces, often preferred because they are less noticeable than metal braces
- clear plastic aligners
Part of the assessment will involve the orthodontist understanding of your specific needs and lifestyle so that the best treatment options can be recommended to you.
So, regardless of your age, if you have questions about the benefits of orthodontic treatment, schedule an assessment. There is no age limit to sound dental health.