There is no age limit as to who can wear braces, so it's possible for adults to receive orthodontic treatment. In fact, according to the American Association of Orthodontists (AAO), 1 in 3 orthodontic patients is an adult over 18 years of age. New orthodontic treatments, such as Invisalign removable aligners, provide discreet and effective orthodontic care and have become more popular among working professionals. Many adults are concerned about their age at the start of treatment and worry that they have missed the opportunity to fix their smile because they think that only childhood is the best age for wearing braces.
However, we want to clear up any doubts: it's never too late to start orthodontic treatment. While the best age to get braces is when you're young, that doesn't mean you can't do it when you're older. A child up to approximately 20 or 22 years old still experiences some growth in the jaw as braces move their teeth. Wearing braces at an older age can solve long-lasting dental problems and increase the longevity of your teeth.
If you prefer to avoid the typical “metal face” look that comes with stainless steel appliances, you can turn to transparent ceramic appliances. As you age, your teeth feel comfortable where they are, so wearing braces at an older age takes longer. However, adults can use conventional metal braces and many other orthodontic appliances to achieve a beautiful and healthy smile regardless of their age. It's important to see a general dentist and orthodontist to guide you in making your decision.
Materials for orthodontic appliances were introduced commercially in the 1980s, helping adolescents and adults complete their treatments and avoid unwanted attention during graduation photo days or job interviews. While braces are effective at any age, the most effective time to place them is at an early age, when permanent teeth have just grown and are still malleable, and the underlying dental structures, including the jaws and facial bones, still have potential for growth. Fortunately, adults don't have time to get orthodontics, as it's never too late to wear braces. Undergoing orthodontic treatment could cause irreversible damage to your mouth, including gum and tooth health.
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