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Age and Tooth Movement: Is There an Impact?

Whether you’re 8 or 80, the process that moves teeth through bone remains the same. Teeth respond to forces placed on them over time, regardless of age. Many orthodontic issues can be corrected just as easily for adults as for children and teens. Even if you’re not an adolescent anymore, your teeth can still be adjusted to create a beautiful smile and a healthy bite.

How is Adult Treatment Different from Child Orthodontics?

The primary difference between orthodontics for adults and children/teens is that adults are no longer growing. While this doesn’t impact the success of orthodontic treatment, it may take slightly longer for adults due to the maturity and density of their bone tissue.

Orthodontists consider several factors when determining the best treatment for adults, including the presence of fillings, missing teeth, misshapen or worn teeth, or dental diseases. Some medications and habits, like smoking, teeth clenching or grinding, or tongue thrusting, can affect treatment outcomes. Orthodontists often coordinate care with a patient’s family dentist and, for adults, may involve other dental specialists like oral surgeons, periodontists, and endodontists.

How Does the Adult Treatment Process Work?

To move your teeth to their ideal positions, your orthodontist will use an “appliance” to deliver controlled forces that gently and predictably reposition teeth. The most common appliances used in adult orthodontics are braces and clear aligners.

For those concerned about aesthetics, advances in orthodontics have made treatment more comfortable and less noticeable. Today’s treatment options are designed to minimise the appearance of appliances, fitting seamlessly into any lifestyle. Options include clear aligners, ceramic braces that blend with your teeth’s colour, custom LightForce 3D printed braces, and lingual braces mounted on the back sides of teeth, making them virtually invisible.

However, not every type of appliance is suitable for every orthodontic problem. It’s essential to be treated by a AHPRA registered orthodontist who can select the right appliance for your unique issue. Orthodontists have access to a full range of appliance options and the expertise to determine the best choice for each patient.

How Long Does Adult Orthodontic Treatment Take?

The duration of adult orthodontic treatment varies based on the severity and complexity of the issues. Each patient will have a customised treatment plan. Your orthodontist will provide a more accurate timeline during your initial consultation.

Generally, patients with mildly misaligned teeth may need treatment for around eight to twelve months, while more complex cases can take a few years. During treatment, orthodontist visits are scheduled every six to eight weeks to monitor progress. Virtual monitoring can reduce your number of appointments in clinic. This time investment can significantly improve dental health, jaw function, biting, chewing, dental hygiene, and overall self-confidence.

Achieve Your Best Smile with an ASO Orthodontist

No matter your age, you can achieve a healthy, beautiful smile with the help of an ASO orthodontist. Orthodontists specialise in properly aligning teeth and jaws, ensuring the best possible results for your smile. Schedule your obligation free consultation start your journey to a transformed smile today.

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