invisalign for teensIf you have a teenager whose teeth have grown in crooked, but you couldn’t provide them with early orthodontic treatment, for whatever reason, then you may be considering trying to have their problems solved now. But the moment you mention the word braces to a teen, I’m sure you’ll see them cringe. That’s because no person over the age of twelve wants to have a mouth full of metal, and that’s just as true for them as it is for you. So, many teens will beg you not to make them get braces, or even refuse; until you explain to them that there are better options. You see, the fact that so many people in adolescence or adulthood need orthodontic treatment, but don’t want to have metal mouths, because that’s something they associate with children, has given rise to innovations in orthodontic technology, to make braces more discreet. And, since braces for teens improve self-image and correct crooked smiles, taking yours to the orthodontist is by all accounts a good move, on your part.

You see, I don’t know if you remember, but being a teenager is hard. It’s really hard. High school is like a seething pool of hormones and self-loathing, jealousy, social and existential angst, and no matter who you are, no matter who your kids are, it’s going to be at least a little bit rough. That’s why you, as the grown up in the situation, have a responsibility to plan ahead, and to take measures in early childhood that will put them in a better situation, to minimize the misery, and maximize whatever well-being the poor creatures will be able to squeeze from what is otherwise an inherently horrific situation. One simple way you can do that, is to give them early orthodontic treatment. However, if you’re reading this article, it’s more likely that you didn’t do that. Maybe it’s not your fault, maybe you couldn’t, for financial reasons; but whatever the explanation, all is not lost. Teen orthodontic treatment is actually not as bad as it sounds, and anything you can do to alleviate your pubescent offspring’s pain is commendable.

You see, your teens’ trepidation will slowly disappear, as you expertly explain to their young mind that braces does not only mean wires across your teeth. In fact, it’s possible that when they go to the orthodontist, they won’t even need braces, although I wouldn’t get their hopes up by emphasizing that. But sometimes dental issues can be corrected by other, simpler methods, such as spacers or retainers. But let’s assume your little bundle of rebellion is indeed going to require more drastic measures, namely, braces or aligners. That still isn’t the end of the world, you will hastily explain. Because invisible braces are totally a thing, these days.

Orthodontic Science: 1
Irrational Teen Angst: 0

There are actually at least three other options that are commonly offered by orthodontists, to alleviate malocclusion, all of which are much more visually unobtrusive than wire braces. Invisible braces cannot be seen by observers, so this option should be highly appealing to someone who spends forty-five minutes in the bathroom looking at themselves in the mirror before going to school every day. Although wire braces are the most effective, one more discreet solution that is almost identical is clear braces, which are more or less the same thing, but made of clear plastic. This makes them not completely invisible, but much less prominent and noticeable. Lingual braces are also good, because they go behind the teeth rather than in front over the faces of them, and so are therefore effectively the most invisible type. However, they can only be applied to certain types of malocclusions. Aligners, such as the popular Invisalign, are often seen as the best compromise, because they are more invisible than clear braces, but almost as versatile, making them a favorite for smile correction among teens and adults alike.

Well, there you have it, that information alone should put your teenager’s mind at rest, at least when it comes to their crowded or crooked teeth. Although I know it’s difficult to quantify, rest assured, your overall level of stress and argument will decrease considerably, when they feel better about the way they look. If you or your teen have any other questions, you should certainly never hesitate to call up your orthodontist’s office, and have your questions answered by an orthodontic specialist. I guarantee you, fixing your teens teeth will be a decision you will not regret, and when they’ve emerged from this labyrinthine cocoon of nascent adulthood, they will thank you.