Most people think about the beginning of fall or Halloween when they think about October. But, October is also National Orthodontic Health Month. Sponsored by the American Association of Orthodontists (AAO), National Orthodontic Health Month helps promote the importance and benefits of orthodontic treatment.
The first recognized specialty within dentistry, orthodontics focuses on the identification and treatment of improper bites, or malocclusions. Training to become an orthodontist takes an extra two to three years after dental school. Because of their expertise and training, orthodontists can recommend the best course of action to create a straight, healthy smile.
At some time, most people will need at least an orthodontic evaluation, if not orthodontic treatment. An estimated 6 out of 10 people worldwide have braces or had them at some point. Although many people assume that braces are just for kids and teenagers, adult orthodontic treatment has risen in popularity, with about 20 percent of orthodontic patients being over the age of 18.
Metal braces are the most common form of orthodontics, but other options exist. Clear brackets and lingual braces provide less conspicuous ways to straighten teeth. For adults and older teen patients, Invisalign clear aligners offer an almost invisible way to move teeth into the correct position.
To find out which options will work for you or your child, schedule an orthodontic consultation. At this appointment, your orthodontist can take X-rays and perform an examination to get a clear picture of the situation. Then, the doctor will meet with you to present a complete treatment plan. Having a perfect smile can boost your confidence and improve your oral health since crooked teeth are harder to keep clean.