Not Just a Pretty Smile
For most patients having a pretty smile is just part of the picture. Orthodontic treatment will straighten teeth, close gaps or reduce crowding, and create a pleasing profile. But wearing braces should also result in an ideal bite. Improper bites cause jaw pain, broken teeth and difficulty in chewing, so an ideal bite is essential to the long term health of your mouth. Working with a specialist who is experienced in the type of orthodontic treatment you want and who will balance your desire for convenience, esthetics, and health will ensure that you have not just a pretty smile.
Orthodontic treatment can be successful at any age, and adults especially appreciate the benefits of a beautiful smile. And you won't have to settle for the old "tin grin" to have the smile you've always wanted. Options such as clear brackets, Invisible Orthodontics, and even lingual brackets (placed on the tongue side of the teeth) keep your smile bright even during treatment. Many adult orthodontic patients have already experienced some breakdown or loss of their teeth and the bone that supports the teeth. In most instances, orthodontic treatment can enhance the success of replacing missing teeth and minimize the continuation of bone loss. More and more adults are improving their smiles and their health with braces. One of every five patients in orthodontic treatment is over 21!
At Levens Orthodontics we like to see children around the age of eight for their first orthodontic consultation. Although Dr. Levens may not recommend starting treatment at that time it allows him to monitor the growth of the teeth and facial bones in order to determine if orthodontic treatment is required and the optimum time to begin treatment. The first permanent molars and incisors are usually in by that age and cross bites, crowding and other problems can be evaluated. When treatment is begun early, we can guide the growth of the jaw and alignment of incoming permanent teeth. Early treatment can also regulate the width of the upper and lower dental arches, gain space for permanent teeth, avoid the need for extractions of permanent teeth, reduce likelihood of impacted permanent teeth, correct thumb-sucking, and eliminate abnormal swallowing or speech problems. In other words, early treatment can simplify later treatment. There is no charge for these monitoring or "recall" appointments, but the benefits are tremendous.