Braces are a common orthodontic appliance used to straighten teeth, improving a person’s smile, oral health, and overall confidence. They generally consist of brackets and wires that affix to the teeth’ surfaces and move them to their proper positions. 

When most people think of braces, they often imagine an adolescent or teen with a noticeably metallic smile. While they’re still a common treatment, metal braces aren’t the only solution anymore. Modern orthodontic trends include more discreet treatment options, including “invisible” braces and clear aligners. 

What’s more, younger individuals aren’t the only ones getting braces. As it turns out, adults can benefit, too. 

A Brief Look at the Different Types of Braces

Let’s take a quick look at the different types of braces available today:

  • Metal braces: These are the most well-known form of braces. They consist of silver metal brackets and wires. 
  • Ceramic (“clear”) braces: Ceramic braces feature translucent brackets, making them a more discreet solution. The wires may be metal or tooth-colored.
  • Lingual braces: With these braces, the brackets attach to the backs of the teeth, hiding them from view. They work in much the same way as metal and ceramic braces. 
  • In-Ovation (self-litigating) braces: These braces are similar to other types except for one thing — they don’t use elastic bands (ligatures). Instead, the wires fit into clips built into the brackets. 
  • Invisalign: Invisalign is a bit different than other forms of braces. It involves the use of clear removable aligners to adjust the positioning of your teeth rather than brackets and wires. 

Can Adults Get Braces?

In short, yes. Adults, just like young teens, can get braces. In fact, according to the American Association of Orthodontists, one in four orthodontic patients are adults.

Common Reasons for Adult Braces

Adults get braces for many reasons:

  • They couldn’t afford braces as a child, but they can now. 
  • They had braces as a child, but their teeth have since shifted back out of alignment. 
  • The alignment of their teeth or jaw has contributed to other conditions, such as temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJ).
  • They want to improve their smile for personal or professional reasons.

In addition to improving the quality of your smile, braces make oral care more accessible and more effective, decreasing your risk of cavities, gum disease, and tooth damage. As an added benefit, straighter teeth can be a great confidence booster!

How Treatment Differs As an Adult

The most notable difference between adult braces and braces for younger patients is that your treatment may take a bit longer. That’s because your jawbone has solidified. It may take more time to coax your teeth into their proper positions. 

Other factors that can affect how long your treatment may take include:

  • The complexity of your situation
  • The exact type of braces you choose
  • How well you follow your orthodontic treatment plan 

Braces for Adults with Dr. Hansen of Las Vegas  

At Hansen Orthodontics, Dr. Hansen provides orthodontic treatment for individuals of all ages — children, teens, and adults. We offer a variety of braces options, too, including ceramic braces. These are among the most popular choices for our adult patients, as they’re more discreet than traditional metal and more cosmetically appealing. 

Are you an adult looking to get braces to improve the health and quality of your smile? Visit Hansen Orthodontics online for more information and schedule your consultation today!