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Dispelling Some Orthodontic Myths, part 2
by Dr. Ed Amley
Myth: Braces are for kids.
FACT: One in five orthodontic patients is an adult. Many adults who have had previous orthodontics are going through treatment now to “refresh” relapsed incisor crowding or to broaden a narrow, “dark corridor” smile thus giving their face a “brace lift.” Other adults seek orthodontic care because they missed the opportunity while a child or teen. Remember, orthodontic treatment works for people of all ages.
Myth: The metal in braces poses problems for people with allergies. Also braces can be attracted to magnetic forces. Or even it’s been said braces rust.
FACT: Although one patient in a thousand may have an allergy to the nickel in the stainless steel component in braces, all patients can wear braces. Clear braces and or titanium metal braces accommodate those who have any sensitivity to stainless steel. In addition, don’t worry about your braces having an attraction to magnets since orthodontic appliances today are made of non-magnetic materials; plus they will not rust no matter how long they are in the mouth.
Myth: Orthodontic treatment is expensive.
FACT: Historically, the average cost of all health services has risen faster than the average cost of orthodontic treatment. Orthodontic fees have not kept pace with the rate of inflation so the public’s buying power has gone up faster than the cost for braces. Today, many businesses offer orthodontic insurance which covers a portion of the cost. Most orthodontists allow their fees to be paid over an extended period of time during the course of treatment making the cost of treatment affordable.
Myth: Braces are painful and take two years or more for the desired result.
FACT: After the adjustment period, which today with light, memory shape wires, and self-ligating brackets, discomfort from braces is often a day or so for children and a little longer for adults. The advances in titanium wires and self-ligating braces reduce binding and friction and thus enable finished results in some instance to occur in months and not years.
Myth: Braces are ugly, call attention to themselves, and can be embarrassing in business.
FACT: Today’s braces may be designed so they are nearly invisible. The clear braces such as the Damon Clear are made of polycrystalline alumina material that is impervious to staining and discoloration from coffee, mustard, red wine and other agents. Some treatments can be done with braces placed on the back (lingual) side of the teeth where they are fully unseen.
Certainly the perceptions and attitudes surrounding braces have changed. Myths such as those just mentioned have been dispelled. The facts now support what many who have had orthodontic treatment repeatedly state, “Braces were one of the best investments my parents made for me.”
Dental Fun Facts
Did you know that a sore jaw, when combined with chest pain, can signal a heart attack — especially in women.
Also, according to several recent studies, research shows that people with periodontal disease (Gum disease) are at higher risk for developing heart disease, stroke, uncontrolled diabetes, pre-term births and respiratory disease.
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