As a practicing orthodontist, I have been consistently providing braces treatment to teenagers keeping their chronological age as the onset criteria. But what about the other end of the spectrum?

Am I Too Old For Braces? By Dr Nikita Khillon

With increasing prevalence of appliances that are barely noticeable, it is not hard to figure out why more and more adults are seeking treatment. At Clove Dental Clinics we are proud to help patients at all age groups achieve their confident smile.

Do adult patients come to me to get braces? 

There are ample reasons to consider orthodontic treatment at any age which could vary anywhere from getting mal-alignment corrected to getting a proud smile giving a moral boost to the patient. The factors that closely determine your candidature as an orthodontic patient is the state of your periodontal health, general health, extent of your malocclusion and not your biological age. Compromised general health such as cardiac anomaly, blood disorder, neurological disorder like epilepsy, uncontrolled diabetes, etc., may act as a constraint. Although a rare problem, but it is something to be mindful during orthodontic corrections.

But what about growth & development constraints?

Growth and development of the orofacial tissues is completed in adults, making the adult bone less resilient to changes unlike in children between the age group of 9-18 years. The two primary bones of the face i.e. Maxilla (upper jaw) and Mandible (lower jaw) are still undergoing growth making it easier for your doctor to redirect their growth if needed by use of certain appliances.  All orthodontic appliances inevitably work in the same manner i.e. by application of light forces on teeth to move them into alignment by altering their movement through bone. The health of the gum tissues plays a key role in keeping the optimal bone level.

Treatment For Adults Vs Children

Unlike children adults are more inquisitive about their treatment plans and the anticipated outcomes thereby keeping their orthodontists on their toes. In my practice, the primary reason an adult takes up orthodontic treatment is compromised esthetics yet demanding the treatment to be carried out in an aesthetically pleasing manner.

Adults are more prone to root resorption while undergoing ortho treatment compared to children – making the treatment more challenging for an orthodontist

However, thanks to modern medicine and research, with wide variety of treatment modalities nowadays – we are on the verge of giving a customized treatment options.

So, it’s only wincing at the thought of having a metallic mouth that’s probably refraining them for walking up to me.

Nevertheless, every patient deserves a healthy smile, so let’s be friends with braces 

Dr Nikita Khillon is an Orthodontist with Clove Dental,

RK Puram, New Delhi