When patients ask this question, it’s usually accompanied by a little embarrassment. That’s because we culturally associate braces as an awkward part of growing up — the ugly duckling stage right before someone grows into their looks. Of course this is enforced by media. Almost any dramatic transformation in those late eighties movies (or early nineties) starts by removing someone’s glasses and then their braces. More recently, the awkward “braceface” persona was adopted as an alter ego by Katy Perry, furthering the stereotype.

Just because we see this time and again in media doesn’t mean adults can’t get braces, too. Smiles are important. They are the first thing most notice about us, and can affect both our personal and professional relationships. Why shouldn’t adults, who maybe need the confidence most, be allowed the opportunity to correct their crooked or gapped teeth?

Why Straighten Your Teeth?

The most common reason to straighten your teeth is cosmetic. You just want the world to see the best you, and that includes a straight, beautiful smile. There aren’t only cosmetic reasons to straighten your teeth, however. Crooked teeth can also be more difficult to clean, leaving you susceptible to periodontal disease, which can eventually cause tooth loss. If your teeth are severely misaligned, this can also put added pressure on your jaw.

Invisalign: Straighten Without the Metal

Despite the silly reasons that can make having braces as an adult embarrassing, it can be difficult to get past these feelings. With treatments like Invisalign, however, you don’t have to. Known as one of the most significant innovations in orthodontic technology, Invisalign gives you the freedom to straighten your teeth on your terms. Using the same orthodontic principles as braces, Invisalign is a set of custom-designed aligners that will slowly straighten your smile as you change from one aligner to the next. Invisalign has collected data from several million mouths and found the most effective methods for straightening smiles that can work in half the time as old Invisalign treatments--and traditional braces.

What Are the Benefits?

The most obvious benefit to Invisalign is time. Compared with traditional braces, which can take up to five years, invisalign can give you the smile you dreamed of in as little as 6 months. The other obvious benefit is freedom. Because each BPA-free aligner is clear, they are difficult to detect when compared with traditional braces. They can also be removed for meals or before important meetings at work. This allows patients to continue to eat the foods they want without disrupting their life.

If you’re interested in Invisalign, the first step is scheduling an appointment with your dentist. There, you can speak about your cosmetic goals, concerns, and oral health history. Your dentist will take measurements and might be able to provide an estimate for how long your treatment might last.

If you’d like to learn whether you’re a candidate for Invisalign, please call 212-557-8668 today for an appointment with Columbus Circle cosmetic dentist Dr. Karthilde Appolon at Appolon Dental Group.