The word “orthodontics” can cover lots of dental treatments, but it can be summed up by saying it’s how to move your teeth to where they should be. Most people think of braces, which makes them think of kids. But do kids need orthodontic care more than adults? Really, it depends on the individual case. But our dentists in Bridgeport/Trumbull and Shelton can help no matter your age.
Why Kids Can Need Orthodontics
- Early fixes usually mean fewer problems and less cost down the road. You know the old saying: An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Usually by age 7, the dentists at both our Bridgeport/Trumbull and Shelton dental offices can see problems starting to develop. By getting some orthodontic treatment early, your child could avoid some expensive treatments when they grow up.
- High school can be brutal. Let’s be honest here. We all remember how bad high school can be when it comes to teasing, bullies, and so on. Just because we’re not in school anymore doesn’t mean those problems magically disappear. But here’s the weird thing: So many teens get braces that they’re almost expected by now. In fact, it’s the kids who don’t get braces that can be teased the most. Plus, if your child’s teeth are really crooked or uneven, that could be a never-ending source of embarrassment for your kids. The family dentists at DeJesus Dental Group fully knows how brutal high school can be.
- Some orthodontic problems need to be fixed ASAP. For most kids, orthodontic treatment is necessary for long-term dental health. But there are some people who need orthodontic treatment as soon as possible. For example, kids with cleft palates and severe malocclusion (when you don’t bite properly) need orthodontic care as soon as possible.
- Primary teeth guide adult teeth. Believe it or not, some young kids need orthodontic care. Your primary teeth served as guideposts for your adult teeth, so they knew where and how to come in. That means, if your primary teeth are really misaligned, your adult teeth could come in even worse. By moving the primary teeth, our dentists can help encourage adult teeth to come in much straighter and more even.
- Because they’re still growing, it’s easier to move kids’ teeth. Children’s bodies are continuously growing (with the occasional growth spurt), and that means their heads and mouths are growing. While the teeth themselves aren’t getting any bigger, it’s sometimes easier to move their teeth around when the rest of their body is still growing.
Why Adults Can Need Orthodontics
- Teeth rarely stay put. Just because you had orthodontic treatments as a child or teen doesn’t mean your teeth will always be just where they should be. With all of those years of chewing, other dental problems like cavities or gum disease, and more, your teeth can still move out of alignment. Just because you’re an adult doesn’t mean your teeth are fine.
- Adults can be as brutal as teens. You’re probably thinking about wearing metal braces again, and wincing at the thought of letting your family and coworkers see them on your teeth. That’s because adults can be just as bad as teens are when it comes to being cruel. Sure, adults have probably gotten better about hiding it, but you know some are going to start talking behind your back as soon as you leave the room. And that’s just over braces. If your teeth are crooked or sticking out at a wrong angle, imagine what they’re already saying.
- Some health issues get worse with age. When you are young, your body is very resilient. It can shrug off a lot of damage and soreness almost overnight. But if you ever tried to play a basketball game when you’re middle-aged, you know how much things have changed. There are some problems that get worse with age, and dental health is no exception. Malocclusion might be no big deal when you’re a teenager, but decades of biting incorrectly can lead to irregular enamel wear and TMJ/TMD pain. It might be better to get orthodontic treatment now that you’re old enough.
- Adults can afford them more easily than kids. While this is less a need and more of a “now you can,” it’s still important. Teenagers have to rely on their parents to afford orthodontic care. But adults have their own jobs and sources of income, which means they can more easily afford orthodontic care.
- People are living longer than ever. As you probably have heard before, the human body isn’t exactly designed to live as long as it does nowadays. Thanks to modern medicine and research, we are living longer than ever before. And that means we’re facing new kinds of problems when we get older. That’s true for dentistry as well. In the past, adults may not have needed orthodontic treatments because they didn’t live long enough to feel it was worth it.
The key is to get done what you need so your teeth (and your whole body) can stay healthy. Call either of our two Connecticut offices — Bridgeport/Trumbull at 203-372-1220 or Shelton at 203-378-9737 — to learn more about how orthodontic treatments are great for almost any age. At our family dental clinic, we have orthodontics no matter your age.