While there is virtually no such thing as being too old for braces, getting them as a teen does have its benefits. Properly aligned teeth obviously have a positive impact on one’s appearance. The benefits go beyond simply looking good, however. They can make it easier to bite or chew and, therefore, have a direct impact on nutritional intake. Teen braces can also prevent jaw pain that teenagers might experience if they have crooked teeth. Our trusted Dallas orthodontist can help your teen make the best decision regarding their orthodontic care.
Overbites and under bites are two common conditions that can be fixed with the use of braces. They are conditions in which the upper and lower teeth do not line up properly. With an overbite,
the upper teeth hang too far over the lower ones. An under bite is just the opposite.
An overbite can impact the appearance by making the upper teeth stick out too far. In some cases, the condition can make it more difficult for the affected person to keep their lips completely closed. Correcting it has a direct and positive impact on the appearance.
At times, the teeth may be crooked in relation to one another. This alone is enough to make many people reluctant to smile. They can be self-conscious to the point that they do not want to let others see their crooked teeth. The easiest way to deal with this, at least in the teenager’s mind, is to simply keep the mouth closed. The reluctance to smile can in itself have a negative impact on the individual’s social life. Others may see the lack of smiling as a sign of unfriendliness and may not interact with the individual accordingly.
A perfect smile can go a long way in making a teen feel confident. In addition, the teeth are typically easier to move into their proper location when the braces are installed at a younger age. They may not need to be in place for as long as they would after waiting until well into the adult years.
Today’s teen braces are much smaller than those that were in use years ago. As a result, they do not stand out so much when the person who is wearing them smiles. For this reason alone, braces may not carry the stigma they did when the teen’s parents were of the same age.
If the teen still does not like the appearance of metal braces in spite of their smaller size, he or she may want to go with clear or ceramic braces. They will blend in with the color of the teeth to the point that they are not nearly as noticeable. Lingual braces, a type of teen braces that mount to the back of the teeth, provide another discrete option. These braces are not visible at all; the only way others will know about them is if they are told.
Invisalign® has become popular with teens in recent years as well. They do the work with the use of clear aligners that fit over the teeth. They can be removed for brushing and flossing. The best way to tell which method is best is to schedule some time with our orthodontist.