Smile correction and fixing teeth have been synonymous with braces. For kids and adults alike, braces have been the way of treatment. Known to be durable, unremovable and functional, braces have been around for more than 100 years, fixing smiles and bringing its users confidence and joy. But have you ever wondered if there was a difference between braces for kids and braces for adults?
All braces types contain certain standard parts like rubber bands, wires, and brackets which are used to efficiently push the teeth to their correct positions. How does this work? Over time, braces are tightened, which pushes the teeth gradually to their correct positions. Once the teeth move slightly in a matter of 3-4 weeks, the braces are tightened again to apply further pressure and result in more movement in the right direction.
Once the braces are taken off, both adults and kids are required to wear retainers for a while. Retainers help keep the corrected teeth in their place and prevent any future teeth movement. This is the basic principle of metal braces which remains constant across kids and adult braces, both.
Now that we have established what remains the same between adult braces and kids’ braces, let us discuss the differences. There are a few factors which help differentiate the two types of braces.
Stage of dental development
Since children’s jaws are still growing, orthodontists find this to be the perfect opportunity to intervene and effectively correct not just bite issues but also guide jaw development. It is simply easier to work on children’s growing teeth and prevent any future dental issues.
As for adults, when they visit the dentist for teeth correction, they are already at the end of the stage of dental development as their teeth are fully grown and developed. This means that dentists have to make corrections by using complex procedures like jaw surgeries, tooth extractions and more to achieve good results. There is also the chance of adults already facing other oral health issues like gum disease, tooth decay, cavities etc which need to be fixed before orthodontic treatment.
Duration of treatment
Another major difference between braces treatment for kids and adults is the duration of the treatment. Since children are still developing their teeth and their jaws, they are more responsive to the orthodontic intervention which can shorten their treatment time. Meanwhile, adults, who have fully developed teeth and a set jaw, require more time due to the complexity of the cases and any additional procedure that they might require.
We all know that metal braces can be uncomfortable for a few weeks. And even when they are tightened every month. Children’s bones and tissues around the mouth are more flexible and adaptable which ensures that they feel less discomfort and pain. On the other hand, adults can feel more discomfort and have more difficulty adapting to the feeling of braces in their mouths.
Children might choose or be suggested to use metal braces with colourful rubber bands or wires. Adults are more likely to choose more discreet options like ceramic braces or invisible aligners like makeO toothsi clear aligners.
To conclude, children and adult braces differ due to their different dental development stages. While both kinds of braces apply the same principles, the two types can differ mainly on aesthetic value, treatment duration, and comfort.
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