Braces aren’t just for kids and teens. Whether you’re an adult who needed braces as a kid and never got them, or you’ve developed misaligned teeth as an adult, braces can improve your smile and oral health. They can straighten crooked teeth, align your bite, and make it easier to keep teeth clean.
Adult Braces Can Improve Your Smile and Oral Health
Instead of going on about all of the benefits of adult braces, we’ve decided to interview one of our coworkers, First Choice Dental's own Mandy Brownell (pictured at right, pre-braces), who just got braces last week. (We'll come back later and also share AFTER pictures!) Mandy has been kind enough to share her experience so you can get a first-hand account of what it’s like to get orthodontics as an adult. Mandy also has TMJ, so you’ll get to hear a bit about how her braces are helping with TMJ treatment.
Why did you decide to get braces?
I've actually always wanted braces. I kind of felt left out when I didn't have them in middle school and high school, which sounds weird. My family never had the money for braces while I was growing up, so even though I needed them I never got them.
What were your fears about getting braces, and why did you hold off until now?
My biggest fear was getting made fun of — but everyone has been so supportive and complimentary! I've been going through TMJ treatment with Dr. Fick for almost a year. We talked about it, and he mentioned this was the best time to begin orthodontic treatment.
I had being thinking about getting braces before starting TMJ, but when I mentioned it to Dr. Fick, we had an in-depth conversation about my bite and symptoms. I've always had problems with clenching & headaches so now my braces can help straighten my teeth and give me a better, healthier bite! The running joke now is that I get to experience my awkward teen years in my late 20's.
How did feel you about your smile before braces? Do you think you’ll feel differently about your smile once you've been through the orthodontics process?
Above, Mandy's day-of selfies, before braces on the left and with braces newly placed on the right. Clear brackets provide a barely-there appearance and minimize the "brace face" effect.
I've grown to love my natural smile, although I was always super self-conscious about it growing up. I have a "snaggle tooth,” so I always felt it stood out in pictures or when I was smiling — and I smile a LOT! As I grew older I just cared a little less that my smile wasn't "perfect,” or that it was different. I started to think that maybe I wouldn't get braces since I was comfortable with my teeth. But once I discovered the functionality of braces thanks to my TMJ dentist, it kind of became a no-brainer to take care of my bite for the betterment of myself rather than just the aesthetic purposes of orthodontic treatment. A straight smile is just the cherry on top!
What was the process like when you got impressions taken and talked with your orthodontist?
Well, my orthodontist is Dr. Cox, and he is fantastic! He and his assistant Tamara made my consultation appointment super smooth and comfortable. They were great about explaining what they were doing and why — showing me photos and x-rays of my teeth while explaining what could be adjusted and why it was important.
I felt very involved in the whole process, which was important to me since orthodontia (orthodontic care) is a new world for me. Since I’m a medical insurance specialist at First Choice Dental, I’d never really been exposed to the step-by-step process involved in getting braces.
When I came back in to actually have my brackets put on, I was extremely nervous as to how it would feel and what it would look like. But Kaleigh and Dr. Cox immediately put me at ease. Kaleigh walked me through the whole process and was always making sure I was comfortable — I can't imagine that it could've gone any better!
How else did your First Choice Orthodontist make the process easy and comfortable?
While I'm not "excited" for the time I'm wearing braces, I feel good about it because of all the support First Choice has provided. I absolutely understand why people love First Choice Dental Orthodontics! It has been super easy to make an appointment that fits my ever-changing schedule, especially with the abundance of office locations to choose from.
The orthodontist and his orthodontic staff are very reassuring and communicative. They definitely make you feel comfortable and at home. You know you're in good hands as soon as you walk through the door.
We’d like to take this opportunity to thank Mandy for sharing, and allowing us to post her comments on our blog. Stay tuned for updates as Mandy gets further along in the orthodontic process!
If you’re an adult thinking about getting braces, for aesthetic and/or functional health benefits, we’d be happy to talk with you further. The next step is scheduling a free appointment online at a First Choice Dental location near you. Prefer to talk with a person? Call us at 608-848-5366.
Your appointment includes an exam, x-rays and a treatment discussion with your orthodontist. There’s absolutely no charge, and no obligation, to learn more about what our orthodontic care can do for your smile and your oral health.
Learn More About Braces, Orthodontics & TMJ Therapy
Feel free to visit our Braces page to learn more about braces for adults, teens and kids. If you think you’re suffering from TMJ, please visit our Headache Therapy page for details on symptoms and treatment options.