Styles come and styles go. Skinny jeans and retro sunglasses made a comeback, so will we start seeing 1920's orthodontic hardware popping up in mouths from Maryland to Manhattan?
You decide.... At left is a set of full-banded braces, circa 1929, fashioned from metals including gold bands on the top teeth. At right is an example of modern braces featuring translucent brackets and the heat-activated nickel-titanium wires developed through NASA. We think you'll agree: Braces have come a long way!
Today braces have been embraced as a modern-day fashion statement and are considered "a cool thing to have" by the younger generation. And it's not just children and teenagers who are happy to wear braces - twenty-five percent of orthodontic patients are now adults who are choosing orthodontic treatment to improve their smiles. No wonder it's socially acceptable, with Hollywood stars like Tom Cruise, Faith Hill and Britney Spears strutting the red carpet with their dazzling braces-filled smiles. After all, who doesn't want to look like a movie star!
Studies show that a combination of factors have contributed to the current acceptance of orthodontic appliances. First, the technology has improved considerably over the past 20 years or more. Not only have traditional braces become more lightweight and discrete, but they have become more effective, leading to shorter treatment times with less discomfort. And of course there are now a range of less conspicuous methods of straightening teeth, from clear ceramic braces to virtually invisible options such as Invisalign®. Secondly, a greater awareness of the health importance of having good teeth has made people more open to orthodontic treatment. And last but not least, as more people are opting for orthodontic treatment the likelihood of being teased in the schoolyard for having braces has dramatically decreased. Today's youth agree that all the cool kids are doing it.
Chances are, your great-grandfather's braces won't make a comeback any time soon. If you'd like to learn more about today's orthodontic treatment options and which one is right of you or your child, contact us today to schedule a complimentary initial exam.