Did you know that only 35% of US adults have properly aligned front teeth? Many others have less-than-perfect bites.
Because of this, more adults in North America are getting orthodontic treatment. In fact, adults account for more than a quarter of orthodontic patients in North America.
If you have imperfectly-positioned teeth, it’s best that you get it looked at by an orthodontist ASAP. This way, you can determine the best orthodontic method to correct it.
The big question now is, what are the average adult orthodontic costs in the US? Why should you even consider getting your teeth straightened now that you’re older?
We’ll answer all these questions in this post, so be sure to read until the end!
Age Doesn’t Matter When It Comes to Modern Orthodontics
As many as 120 million US adults have at least one missing or lost tooth. Worse, 36 million no longer have any of their permanent teeth left! Of these completely toothless individuals, 90% use dentures.
Dentures, however, don’t stimulate the jawbone as natural teeth do. Over time, this lack of stimulation will lead to bone resorption. As more bone “melts” away, parts of the face, such as the cheeks and lips, will also begin to “sink”.
Adult braces play a key role here by serving as a gateway for improved prosthetic procedures. For example, they can close spaces between teeth that will act as prosthetic supports. They can also move the teeth to more ideal locations for the same purpose.
In doing so, a patient can then choose to have an implant-supported denture, crown, or bridge. Dental implants act much like natural teeth, so they stimulate the jawbone too. So, in a way, adult orthodontics can also help prevent loss of bone that can change your facial structure.
This is why even elderly adults are undergoing orthodontic treatment. There are even some orthodontic patients who are already over 60 to 80 years old!
This should be enough reason for you to consider treatment too, whatever your age is. How old you are really doesn’t matter, because orthodontics can and will move your teeth.
How Does Adult Orthodontic Treatment Differ Children or Teens Then?
Regardless of your age, your teeth will move through the same physiological forces. The only difference is that in adults, the bone tissues are denser. As such, orthodontic treatment may take more time.
Beyond Straighter, More Dazzling Smiles
As with children and teen orthodontics, adult braces also help create straighter smiles. However, they also help lower the health risks linked to crooked teeth and bad bites.
Aging, after all, can have a diminishing effect on a person’s immune system. This reduced immune function can make adults more prone to health issues.
Let’s take a closer look at some of the ways that adult orthodontics can be key to better overall health.
Poor Nutrition Equates to Poor Overall Health
Misaligned bites can cause symptoms like chewing difficulties and jaw pain. These problems can then interfere with an adult’s optimal nutritional intake.
The thing is, poor nutrition can lead to preventable chronic diseases. These include poor bone health, hypertension, heart disease, and diabetes.
The main goal of adult orthodontics is to restore oral functions by improving the bite. These oral appliances also help prevent further teeth and bone loss. As such, an improved bite helps adults achieve better nutritional intake.
Adults can also suffer from more pronounced speech problems due to malocclusion. Such problems include sound production errors, such as lisps.
Adult orthodontics can help reduce or even eliminate these speech issues. Since they correct the placement of your teeth, you’ll be able to pronounce all those letters better.
The Average Adult Orthodontic Costs in the US
Now that you know how adult orthodontics can benefit you, let’s now discuss costs.
Each mouth is different, and so are the misalignment problems that affect them. As such, orthodontic treatment costs can vary widely from patient to patient.
One of the main factors that can affect the costs of treatment is the severity of the malocclusion. The more severe the overbite, underbite, or crossbite is, the longer it’ll take to treat. All these can then raise the costs of the treatment.
Your treatment cost will also vary based on the type of appliance you wish to get. Many adults now choose Invisalign, and not only because of its inconspicuous aligners. In many cases, Invisalign has shown to work faster than traditional metal braces.
The best way for new orthodontic patients to determine their cost is to pay an orthodontist a visit. An initial consultation will allow the specialist to properly diagnose the patient’s condition. From here, the orthodontist can develop the most appropriate treatment plan.
It’s also during these visits that patients will learn how much their treatment will cost. Thanks to 3D scanners, dentists can take on-the-spot x-rays of their patient’s mouths.
Financing Programs Are Available
If you’re still on the fence about getting orthodontic treatment, know that you have many ways to pay for it. One of these cost-reducing tips for braces is to sign up for a payment plan.
Most reliable orthodontists offer these staggered payment programs. Meaning, you can pay for your Invisalign or braces on a monthly basis!
If you have dental care coverage, your policy may also help pay for your treatment. How much it will cover still depends on your insurer though so be sure to ask them first. Make sure that your chosen orthodontist also accepts your insurance coverage.
Get Straighter, Healthier Teeth With Adult Orthodontic Treatment
There you have it, your ultimate guide on adult orthodontic costs and why these costs are really worth it. Orthodontic appliances do more than enhance your smile; they protect your natural teeth. The healthier your teeth and gums are, the lower your risks of chronic diseases!
Ready to explore your adult orthodontic treatment options and how much they may cost you? Then please don’t hesitate to schedule your appointment with us now! You can also call our Chicago dental office for questions about Invisalign or braces.