CD-Dentist and patient during an orthodontic treatment

Orthodontic Treatment Myths You Should Not Believe

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Most people fear the unknown. It’s probably why most people feel uneasy when they need to undergo medical or dental procedures. It’s also probably why we have lots of myths about dentistry.

Unfortunately, these myths put braces in a negative light, preventing people from reaping the benefits of straight teeth.

We’re here to tackle myths about orthodontic treatments and offer some orthodontic facts to debunk them.

1. Braces will set off metal detectors at the airport. 

Metal braces are light materials that won’t trigger airport metal detectors.

2. You’ll be wearing braces for several years. 

“How long do I need to wear braces?” is a question that often pops up on orthodontics FAQs. Each patient is unique; some might have mild misalignment problems that will only take three to six months. Some might have more complex misalignment problems that need 12 to 18 months to treat. But it definitely won’t take several years.

Orthodontic treatments also don’t last for only a few weeks; avoid businesses that offer orthodontic treatments with immediate results. Teeth need to move to their correct places slowly and deliberately, which will take months or years. Otherwise, the roots of your teeth grow shorter, making them loose and causing them to fall out.

Dentists and orthodontists who have proper training and go through orthodontics specialty programs are the only people you should approach for braces.

3.  Orthodontic treatments only treat crooked teeth. 

Some alignment problems are not immediately apparent when you smile. Crooked teeth may be the most obvious problem, but you may also have underlying jaw misalignments that need orthodontic treatments.

4. Braces are expensive! 

One of the most common myths about dentistry is how expensive treatments are. Orthodontic treatments are costly due to the materials used and the orthodontist’s experience. But don’t lose hope; most offices offer free consultations and have flexible payment plans. Some insurance plans may cover them. It’s best to talk to your orthodontist or insurance provider if you plan to have braces.

5. You don’t need to visit an orthodontist regularly to get straight teeth. 

Patients undergoing orthodontic treatments need to visit their orthodontists regularly. Not visiting your orthodontist or missing out on your appointments means your treatment isn’t monitored, which isn’t good. These regular visits to your orthodontist ensure your orthodontic treatment stays on track and allows your orthodontist to correct any problems that may arise mid-treatment. Otherwise, your braces will be rendered useless, and your treatment may last longer than it should.

6. Straightening teeth is only for aesthetic purposes. 

Here’s one of many orthodontic facts: crooked teeth negatively impact a patient’s appearance and oral health. They have more spaces that toothbrush bristles can’t reach, which may lead to food debris and plaque accumulation that can cause cavities in no time.

Having orthodontic treatments done improves your smile’s appearance and your oral health. A recent systematic review involving multiple studies shows that orthodontic treatment improves the quality of life. It has also repeatedly been shown that orthodontic treatments improve self-esteem, giving patients a more positive outlook on life.

7. It’s just for kids! 

Braces can straighten teeth at any age; however, orthodontic treatments work faster on children and teens than on adults because their jaws are still developing. On the other hand, adults already have fully-developed teeth and jaws and may have other dental work or problems that come with their age. Adults can still benefit from braces, but their treatments may take longer. The earlier you seek orthodontic treatment, the better.

8. Your teeth will stay straight forever after orthodontic treatments. 

Another question that often pops up in orthodontics FAQs is, “Will my teeth stay straight after braces?” Unfortunately, teeth won’t stay straight after orthodontic treatments. They will always try to return to their previous positions. This is why your orthodontist will give instructions on keeping your smile straight and recommend retainers that keep your teeth in their new positions.

9. Braces won’t look good. 

Old movies often depict kids with braces as losers who don’t fit in and don’t look appealing. However, those are now a thing of the past. Braces are now a fashion statement for younger people, and you also have more discreet options like clear aligners and ceramic braces if you don’t want your braces to stand out.

10. You’ll need to say goodbye to your favorite foods if you get braces. 

You may need to avoid some foods if you choose traditional braces. However, some brace options like clear aligners are removable; you can easily take them out before meals, allowing you more freedom with your food choices. You don’t need to worry about damaging them.

11. Metal braces are your only option. 

Orthodontists spend many years learning about how teeth move. Training and orthodontics specialty programs make them highly qualified to use every tool and material available to give the best possible care for their patients that suits their needs. Aside from metal braces, orthodontists also have clear brackets that are less noticeable than metal braces. They also offer lingual braces, which are braces they put behind the teeth. They are truly hidden, and they won’t hurt your tongue.

It’s best to discuss your options with your orthodontist to learn their pros and cons and if they’re the right orthodontic appliance for you.

Key Takeaway 

Most dental and orthodontic treatments are surrounded by myths that may deter some people who need treatments. Only get orthodontic treatments from licensed and trained orthodontists, and you only need to wear braces for a few months to a few years. You also have many discreet brace options if you feel they won’t suit your style. Braces are for everyone, not just kids, and you don’t need to say goodbye to your favorite food. Lastly, braces are beneficial for your whole oral health; they’re not just for show or aesthetics.

Visit Century Dental today for straighter teeth. 

Our dentist in St. Pete Beach provides teeth straightening services like Invisalign clear aligners that are discreet and easy to use. They also provide preventive treatments that help keep your teeth healthy. Call us today for any inquiries or concerns you may have; we’ll be there to answer them.

Picture of Dr. Abdullah M. Allawnha

Dr. Abdullah M. Allawnha

Dr. Allawnha, born in New Orleans and raised in Windsor, Canada, earned a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from the University of Windsor. He worked as an ER nurse in Detroit, Michigan, before moving to Morgantown, West Virginia, to become a dentist. He completed his Doctorate of Dental Surgery (DDS) degree from West Virginia University School of Dentistry while still working as a nurse until he graduated.

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