Are you nervous about wearing braces as an adult? You may feel a little self-conscious about having metal or colored brackets on your teeth and how the mechanism affects your smile. However, roughly 20% of orthodontic patients are adults, and they can tell you from experience that the treatment time can lead to a better bite and prevent further dental concerns.

So, whether you didn’t wear your retainers the first time around as a child or you’ve only recently contemplated transforming your smile, turn to Steele Creek Orthodontics. We provide braces for adults in Charlotte, North Carolina, and we want to walk you through all the options for adults.

Metal Braces

Metal braces are the oldest and most traditional form of braces. They use an archwire that runs through the metal brackets placed on each tooth to straighten your smile. The sturdy metal may not be aesthetically pleasing, but it provides the best results for all cases. Unlike other forms of braces, only traditional braces can assist in extreme cases, including:

  • Protrusion: A tooth in the upper jaw shifts excessively forward while a tooth in the lower jaw shifts backward, causing horizontal overlapping.
  • Large gaps: While other braces can close smaller gaps, wider gaps require metal braces to pull the teeth into place.
  • Intrusion: A tooth has not fully emerged, leaving about half of it resting in the jawbone. As a result, it hangs higher than your other teeth.
  • Extrusion: A tooth hangs lower in its socket, giving it the appearance of elongation.

Clear Braces

We also offer clear braces for adults in Charlotte, North Carolina. Clear braces use ceramic brackets rather than metal ones, which blend in closely with the natural shade of teeth. While they are not completely invisible, they are more discreet and offer the same strength as traditional braces.

The biggest downside to ceramic braces is the material itself. Ceramic tends to deteriorate over time if not cared for properly. In this case, the brackets can turn brittle, requiring more attention and orthodontic care than their metal counterparts.

Proper oral hygiene, including brushing and flossing after every meal, is vital in keeping clear braces intact. Many ceramic braces also tend to stain easily. However, with Clarity Ceramic Braces at Steele Creek Orthodontics, you can drink your favorite wine or coffee without fear.

Invisible Braces

Invisible braces are not to be confused with clear braces. Invisible braces, or clear aligners, are the best option for adults who have minor gaps or slightly crooked teeth that need fixing.

When you choose these aligners, your dentist will examine your bite to make sure you’re a candidate for Invisalign. After completion, your dentist will continue with a 3-D scan of your upper and lower jaw so they can make multiple sets of trays. Your first set of trays will closely mirror the current state of your teeth, and the last set will match your desired outcome.

The benefits of using Invisalign include:

  • No brackets or wires, making it completely invisible.
  • No dental assistance when putting on or taking off the trays.
  • No appointment for switching trays.
  • Less frequent visits to your orthodontist since you’re only going in for occasional checkups (as opposed to monthly checkups with traditional braces).
  • Coverage by most dental insurance plans.

Steele Creek Orthodontics

Despite how you decide to proceed with braces for adults in Charlotte, North Carolina, count on Steele Creek Orthodontics to guide you. Dr. Mallary Forrest has more than six years of experience as a general dentist, and her passion for orthodontics has led her to her position today.