Benefits of Braces for Older Adults

Benefits of Braces for Older Adults

Apr 6, 2024

Achieving a straight, beautiful smile may cross our minds as we grow older. Fortunately, it is never too late for orthodontic treatment.

Mature patients do require special considerations. Let’s explore why older adults should consider braces.

Why can older adults still get braces?

Teeth can be moved and adjusted at any age, as long as the gums and bone structure are healthy. The biological process of moving teeth is essentially the same. Braces apply continuous pressure over time, which slowly moves teeth into the desired position.

However mature patients require special considerations. While aging, the density of our bones increases, and the flexibility of our gum tissue decreases.

This doesn’t impede movement, but rather prolongs the process compared to teenagers whose bones are still developing. Also, older adults often have preexisting dental work like crowns or implants, necessitating an adjusted treatment approach.


Why consider braces as an older adult?

Advancements in dental care and healthier lifestyles, people are keeping their natural teeth longer. This longevity means that the alignment of our teeth can significantly impact our quality of life as we age.

The decision to pursue orthodontic treatment as an older adult can have a significant impact on your quality of life.

Here are some compelling factors that make braces an excellent choice for you.

Enhancing Your Smile and Boosting Self Confidence

As we navigate through later stages of life, we still want to feel good about our appearance. A straight, healthy smile can be a major boost to self-esteem and social interaction.

It’s about feeling your best at any age, and for many, that includes having a smile they can be proud of.

Improving Oral Health

Misaligned teeth can lead to difficulties in cleaning, which in turn can increase the risk of periodontal disease, a condition linked to heart disease, diabetes, and other chronic illnesses that are more prevalent in older age.

By straightening your teeth with braces, you can improve your oral hygiene routine and reduce the likelihood of developing dental problems in the future.

Reduce and Prevent Future Dental Issues

Orthodontic treatment can also prevent or address various dental issues that may arise with age.

Conditions such as temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJ), sleep apnea, and speech difficulties can be improved through orthodontic intervention.

By aligning your teeth and correcting your bite, you can alleviate these problems and enhance your overall well-being. 

When to Consider Orthodontic Treatment as an Older Adult

While there is no specific age limit for orthodontic treatment, there are several signs that indicate it may be time to consult with an orthodontist.

If you experience any of the following issues, it’s worth considering braces as an older adult: 

  • Difficulty in Biting, Chewing or Speaking
    If you find it challenging to bite, chew, or speak properly, it may be a sign of misaligned teeth or an improper bite. Orthodontic treatment can help realign your teeth and improve your bite, making these everyday activities easier and more comfortable.
  • Crooked, Crowded or Protruding Teeth
    Visible misalignment, such as crooked, crowded, or protruding teeth, can affect both your appearance and oral health. Orthodontic treatment can gradually move your teeth into their ideal positions, giving you a straight and well aligned smile.
  • Jaw Discomfort and Pain
    Jaw pain or discomfort, including symptoms of temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder, can be alleviated through orthodontic treatment. By correcting your bite, braces can help relieve jaw tension and associated pain.
  • Desire for Aesthetics Improvement and Self Confidence.
    Even if you don’t have any noticeable dental issues, you may still desire a more aesthetically pleasing smile.  Orthodontic treatment can address minor cosmetic concerns and help you achieve the smile you’ve always wanted and feel more confident about yourself. 

Type of Braces for Older Adults

Orthodontists often employ a more conservative approach with adults. Technologies such as low-force braces and clear aligners are particularly beneficial for older patients. These advancements minimise discomfort and adapt to the lifestyle needs of adults who may be hesitant to sport traditional metal braces.

At the moment, you have several options for the type of braces you can choose: 

  • Metal Braces
    Traditional metal braces are the most affordable option and have a proven track record of effectively straightening teeth.
  • Ceramic Braces
    Ceramic braces are a more aesthetically pleasing option as they use tooth-colored or clear brackets that blend in with your natural teeth.
  • Clear Aligners
    Clear aligners, such as Invisalign or Spark Aligners, have gained popularity among adults due to their discreet and removable nature. These custom made, transparent aligners gradually shift your teeth into alignment.

Your orthodontist will assess your specific needs and recommend the most suitable type of braces for your treatment. 

Aspiring Stories of Older Adults after Braces

Women in her 60s
After living with misaligned teeth for her entire life, a woman in her sixties made the decision to get braces upon retiring. She shared how her newfound confidence while speaking in public and the compliments she received for her rejuvenated smile have greatly impacted her.

Gentleman in his 70s
In his 70s, there was another remarkable individual who underwent orthodontic treatment to correct his bite. This gentleman had been facing challenges with jaw pain and limited food options. However, after the treatment, not only did his smile become more aligned, but he also found relief from his functional concerns. Consequently, he was able to enjoy meals without experiencing any discomfort.

These stories and many others highlight the life changing impact that braces can have, regardless of age. They prove that it’s never too late to invest in your dental health and that the benefits can extend far beyond cosmetics. 


Conclusion - The Ageless Appeal of Braces

Remember, it’s never too late to achieve a straight, healthy smile. Orthodontic treatment as an older adult can not only enhance your appearance but also improve your oral health and overall well-being.

Embrace the opportunity to invest in yourself and enjoy the lifelong benefits of a beautiful smile at any age.