Inaccurate information about braces and the orthodontic process are quite common online, and can result in certain people avoiding treatment altogether, or relapsing after treatment they’ve already had. Here, we’d like to clear up 5 common myths about braces.
1. People only get braces for aesthetic reasons.
A beautiful, symmetrical smile is naturally a substantial benefit to getting orthodontic treatment, but there are many health benefits to orthodontic treatment too!
Straight teeth are much easier to keep clean than misaligned teeth, since there aren't as many crevices for food particles and plaque to build up in.
Misaligned teeth can also make eating certain foods quite difficult, and they can cause an uneven wear pattern because they grind unevenly.
2. Braces are for kids and teenagers; I've missed my chance to straighten my teeth.
If you have healthy teeth, you can undergo orthodontic treatment! Age isn’t a barrier to orthodontic treatment at all.
The fundamental process by which teeth to move and change position is the same for everyone, regardless of age. And recent advances in orthodontic technology mean there are many low-profile, virtually invisible braces options. You don’t have to worry about looking unprofessional or 'too young' in your day to day life.
3. Rubber bands are the least important part of my treatment, so I don’t really need to keep them on all the time.
We're not sure why, as it couldn't be further from the truth, but this myth is very common! While they’re not made of metal like many of the other parts of your braces, rubber bands play a fundamental role.
The rubber bands function to move your top teeth and your bottom teeth in relation to each other, so that they sit comfortably together, improving your bite.
To make sure your treatment goes according to place, be sure to wear your elastic bands full time, as prescribed. If you don't, you’re just prolonging the process!
4. My teeth have shifted after treatment. Clearly, my orthodontist didn’t do a good job.
There's no guarantee that your teeth won’t shift out of position over time after your orthodontic treatment is complete.
This is the main purpose of your retainer! Just after your orthodontic treatment is finished, you'll need to wear your retainer full time. When your orthodontist gives you the go-ahead, you can move to part-time wear, but you should always wear your retainer, at least periodically, to maintain the best results after treatment.