Treatment Options For Adult Orthodontic Patients

Although some people have their dental misalignment corrected during childhood, many people reach adulthood without having their malocclusion treated. As a result, orthodontists regularly prescribe adult braces. If you are an adult who suffers from crooked teeth, you may be unaware of the treatment options that are frequently offered to adult orthodontic patients. Here are a few of them.


If your alignment is not severe, your condition may be treated with the Invisalign system. The treatment uses mouth trays, called aligners, to reposition the teeth. One tray is used for the teeth of the top palate, and one tray is used for those of the bottom jaw. During the treatment, a number of aligner sets are used in a specific order. The patient wears each set for several weeks before moving on to the next set in the prescribed plan.

Invisalign is only appropriate for people with a fully-grown palate. Thus, the system is not suitable for young children. Adult patients are often pleased with the Invisalign system because of its benefits, which include:

  • Removability. The trays can be taken out of the mouth to make eating and cleaning the teeth more comfortable.
  • Discretion. The clear plastic of the aligners makes them practically invisible in the mouth.
  • Rapid treatment. The treatment process is usually complete in a year or less. 

Although the Invisalign system is effective, it works best for patients who have a minor to moderate misalignment. Additionally, once the treatment is complete, a retainer may be recommended to help maintain the results.

Lingual Braces

Lingual braces are also popular among adults. The braces include metal brackets, but the brackets are discreetly positioned on the back side of the teeth, which lies closest to the lingual organ, or tongue. 

Lingual braces can treat a wide range of alignment issues, including bite problems. In addition, they do not affect the speech as strongly as other orthodontic appliances that rest on the front surface of the teeth. With lingual braces, the lips do not have to adjust to a bulky appliance between the inner lips and the teeth. Thus, the formation of words may be easier.

Also, the placement of the braces allows adults who enjoy playing wind instruments to continue playing unhampered by the orthodontic appliance. The positioning of the lingual braces is also beneficial for people who play sports and could suffer an injury to the soft tissues of the mouth due to a blow that presses the lips or cheeks against traditional braces.

If you would like to learn more about adult orthodontic options, schedule an appointment with an orthodontist in your local area.