For most people, braces are something they get in their childhood or even teenage years, not when they are adults. However, some adults may find that later in life, they need the help of braces to keep their teeth properly aligned. Before you decide if braces are right for you when you are older, think about the different factors that can influence this big decision. 

Availability and Cost

If your current dentist has deemed you a candidate for braces, it might be a good idea to get a second opinion. Sometimes, braces seem like the easiest way to get teeth straight, but you may have other options available to you since you're an adult. Braces can cost anywhere from two to three thousand dollars to upwards of almost ten thousand dollars, depending on the type you receive. If your dental insurance does not cover the cost of braces for adults, you might be left footing the bill, but there are some plans that may cover part of the cost. 

Questions to Ask

Before you decide if braces are right for you, there are several questions you should ask your orthodontist. Here are some things you should find out before determining if braces will be the best option:

  • Will the braces alter my facial profile in any way?
  • Will I need to have any teeth removed before the braces can be put in?
  • Are there other options available to me, such as "invisible" style braces rather than metal?
  • Are rubber bands going to be required in addition to the braces?
  • How long will I need to wear the braces?
  • How often will I need to come in for adjustments, and how much will each adjustment session cost?
  • Is any other form of surgery needed?
  • Will there be any pain or any other discomfort involved with the new braces?
  • Is this process going to improve my bite or simply realign my teeth?

If You Do Get Braces

If you decide that braces are the best route for you, be prepared to deal with a few different things. Initially, you may feel a bit of discomfort after the braces have been put on, but this should subside within a week or two. You will also need to be especially aware of the need for extra brushing, flossing, and removing any food particles from between your braces. Make a dental kit to bring with you to work or while travelling so you can address any annoying food pieces or other irritants that might get stuck in them. Even though you might feel a bit self-conscious about having braces as an adult, remember that it is only temporary and the beautiful straight smile you will have when they come off will be well worth it.