In a world where teens are maturing faster and at a much younger age due to having access to social media, the likes of which generations before have never experienced, their insight into adult lives and experiences, that they may feel like they’re missing out on, is far greater than people may care to admit. With personal image being so important to the younger generation, it has become far less acceptable to these teens to be seen in a set of traditional braces when there are other options available to them. With clear braces on Harley Street, the options for invisible orthodontics allow socially active teens to build their image in a way that they are comfortable with, instead of hiding from the potential embarrassment of the infamous ‘train tracks.’
Teens and social media
With 97% of teenagers being on social media, it is no wonder that personal image has become very important to what is now known as Gen-Z. Gone are the days where the only thing a teen needed to worry about was their school photograph, now a bad image could mean a week’s worth of memes and teasing going around the school, or worse still, bullying spreading to everyone’s phones in a matter of minutes. Adolescence is hard, this much has remained the same, but the pressure that teens fall under now has never been more difficult and if straightening teeth with clear braces is an option, then why not make their lives that much easier?
Get it done while they’re young
A simple medical fact is that the bones of a young teen are still growing and are relatively soft, so making adjustments to the teeth and the bite are much easier than if they were to wait for adulthood. Clear braces in these adolescent years can correct any hereditary malocclusions and/or crooked smiles, as well as any malformations that may have occurred due to injury or bad habits in formative years, like thumbsucking or using a pacifier after the age of 3. By ensuring that the alignment of the jaw is correct at a young age, one may prevent further damage to the teeth later, like grinding or a bad bite that could lead to painful TMJ issues.
The fixed clear brace (also known as a ceramic brace) will offer a teen confidence while still resulting in properly aligned teeth, whether they need to fix bite issues, or crowding, or gaps, these braces can do so without being obvious. They are fitted on the front of the teeth and adjusted over a period of time as needed; using clear or tooth coloured brackets and wires they are hard to detect for the entire length of the procedure.
Once a patient has consulted with a specialist, records in the form of X-rays, photographs, and 3D models are used to plan the result. The braces are then fitted to the teeth and the first adjustment is made which will slowly begin to align the teeth to the desired effect. Adjustments will continue to be made every month or two as the position of the teeth begins to change, thus securing a winning smile at the end of it all, when the braces are eventually removed and a retainer is provided to maintain the new shape.
As an alternative, removable, invisible aligners such as Invisalign are also known as clear braces, as they are made from transparent plastic. These aligners are changed every 2 weeks, but differ from the fixed braces in the fact that they can be taken out for cleaning, eating and for photographs!