If you had braces as a child or teenager, you probably aren’t anxious to repeat the experience. Although cumbersome for some teens, most adults are happy that they received treatment and have a straight smile today. But what happens when you already had braces as a kid but need them again as an adult? Here are a few of the reasons you might need additional orthodontic treatment to perfect your smile.
You Didn’t Wear Your Retainer
Although people in the past have heard that they only need to wear their retainer for a year or two after treatment, many orthodontists today agree that you should wear your retainer most nights for the rest of your life. For people who didn’t wear their retainer after orthodontic treatment, the teeth can majorly shift during this period. The brackets and wires that held your straight smile in place are no longer there. Your teeth need guidance to sit in their permanent spots, which is why your retainer is so important. If you didn’t wear your retainer or rarely wore it, you might have to get braces again to repeat treatment.
Your Teeth Have Shifted
As we get older, our bite can change as our teeth shift. What once may have been a corrected overbite might now be a protruding one. Even if you wore your retainer for the year or two you were supposed to, your teeth can still shift. If your teeth have shifted into unnatural positions, you may need braces again in adulthood. When your bite is incorrect, this can cause problems with chewing, speaking, and could even cause symptoms of TMJ disorders.
You Didn’t Complete Treatment
If you need two-phase orthodontic treatment as a child but didn’t complete your treatment, you might need some additional work done. Two-phase orthodontic treatment is best for complex orthodontic issues that require two sets of braces at two different times. If your teeth looked fine after phase one treatment, you or your parents might have decided to skip that second set of braces. When you don’t complete treatment, you’re leaving room for future problems. These are issues that’ll likely need correction as you enter adulthood!
You Left Your Wisdom Teeth In
Wisdom teeth are that pesky set of third molars that come in between the ages of 17 and 21. By this time, some people have already completed their orthodontic treatment. This means their smile is straight when wisdom teeth make their appearance. Since our jaws have gotten smaller over time, wisdom teeth are often impacted. This means there’s not enough room for them to come in and they push against your other teeth. When this happens, teeth that were once straight can quickly become crooked.
If you neglect to remove your wisdom teeth, you could need a second set of braces to correct the damage the wisdom teeth have caused. Getting a second set of braces isn’t the end of the world! This treatment is well worth your time and money to have a straight smile again. Whether you neglected to wear your retainer, didn’t finish treatment, or just need to get your wisdom teeth removed, you can still get a beautiful smile the second time around!