These days it seems like every other child you see has braces or has been told that they need braces. When you go back a few years, not as many people seemed to have braces – in fact, it was usually only the people with quite severe teeth misalignment. So why are so many more people – particularly children – being told they need orthodontic treatment nowadays? Are our teeth getting collectively worse as a society?
There are many reasons for the occurrence of crooked teeth. These can range from simple genetics to tooth injuries, premature tooth loss, thumb sucking or other oral environmental reasons. And while our teeth are probably not getting more crooked than those of our ancestors, there are a number of very good reasons why more people are getting braces these days.
Braces are now more affordable
For many people, one of the main obstacles to getting braces was the cost. Now, treatment has become more common for the everyday person, and thus more affordable, and the burden of payment can be offset with payment plans and financing options.
There are more options for orthodontic treatment
In the past, options for straightening and improving your teeth were limited, meaning braces were not an option for everyone. And if you did need braces, you didn’t have a lot of choice in how your braces looked.
However, in the last 15 years or so, the use of new alloys has allowed wires to become lighter and more flexible, meaning braces won’t look as noticeable anymore. Braces certainly look better these days than they used to, and there are now smaller, less visible and more aesthetic treatment options for those wishing to straighten their teeth. Options such as Invisalign and ClearCorrect (clear, nearly invisible braces) are now common, and give people plenty of options to choose from.
People are more aware of the risks of misaligned teeth
Orthodontics deliver a lot of benefits for oral health. Poorly aligned bites can cause crowding and wearing down of teeth if left untreated over time. Having straight and correctly aligned teeth allows for better hygiene and reduces the risk of tooth decay and gum disease. Orthodontically straightened teeth tend to last for longer than teeth which have not been treated in this way, as they are much easier to maintain. Straightening your teeth has definite longevity benefits and is just one of the reasons why people pursue orthodontic treatment.
Braces are socially more acceptable
It used to be hugely embarrassing to have to wear braces, and teenagers couldn’t wait to get them off. Nowadays, braces have become much more widely accepted than they previously were – in fact, many people see them as being more acceptable than having crooked teeth.
Braces have even become somewhat of a fashion accessory for celebrities and models, with many choosing to wear them simply for the look, and not out of necessity. In fact, after makeup, cosmetic dentistry is the largest non-surgical beauty industry in the world.
People are more aware of the positive effect of self-confidence in their lives
To be able to smile freely without fear of embarrassment is priceless, and allows people to express and present themselves much more confidently. It’s common to see low self-esteem and confidence be transformed into high confidence and self-esteem after patients have undergone orthodontic treatment. Most people want to project the best version of themselves and understand the importance of being confident. Braces certainly help with this.
And it’s not only children. While children and teenagers make up the majority of orthodontic patients, many adults are now joining the queue to perfect their teeth. People are nowadays willing to go to great lengths to get a better smile. This fascination with the ‘perfect’ smile is certainly understandable, with those with well-aligned smiles being more likely to be perceived as friendly, approachable, and confident.
Is it time for you to consider braces?
We can help you make the best decision about what kind of orthodontic treatment you need, and we love to help our patients achieve the smile of their dreams. We provide orthodontic care for both children and adults, using a number of procedures including traditional braces and ClearCorrect. Contact us today for a consultation: https://www.lentinidental.com.au/contact-us/
You can find out more about ClearCorrect here: https://www.lentinidental.com.au/our-services/clearcorrect/, and about traditional orthodontic treatment here: https://www.lentinidental.com.au/our-services/orthodontics/