Many adults consider opting for orthodontic treatment later in life for cosmetic and health reasons. Whether they didn’t have the money, time, or resources when younger, adulthood can offer more flexibility, meaning easier accessibility for many. And luckily, those looking for options on how to straighten teeth today have more options than ever. From braces to aligners, here are some reasons adults should consider teeth straightening and how to straighten teeth in today’s day and age.

Reasons to straighten teeth as an adult

Here are some reasons why adults may want to consider straightening their teeth:


Smiles can play a big part in a person’s self-esteem. Smiles are a big part of day-to-day life, whether it be friendly greetings at work or laughing with friends. A polished smile can help someone feel their best, boosting confidence and lending the courage to take on life’s most significant moments.

Oral hygiene  

While many consider straight teeth an exclusively cosmetic issue, improperly aligned teeth can also be a health issue. It can be difficult to properly clean crowded teeth, leading to a breeding ground for bacteria and further problems. On the other end, teeth too spread out can result in more content with the gums, leading to increased irritation.

Physical health

This may not be a problem for everyone, but it is essential to address with age. Teeth shift over time, even with braces as a child. Because of this, bites may change, resulting in jaw tension that can lead to other issues. For example, bite changes can lead to increased headaches, problems with chewing, and general physical discomfort.

Teeth straightening methods

Here are some teeth straightening methods to consider:

Metal braces

One of the most common straightening options, metal braces, is a universally accepted option by dental insurers. Braces work by placing brackets on each tooth and looping a wire through the brackets to straighten teeth.

When the doctor tightens the wire or adds elastic bands, the patient’s teeth can continue to be adjusted. Braces also do more than straighten teeth. They can correct other severe orthodontic issues such as bite and jaw issues. Because braces require readjustments periodically, they are often only available with an orthodontist.

Ceramic braces

A variation of the traditional metal braces, ceramic braces function similarly but differ cosmetically. Ceramic braces are tooth-colored rather than metal and can be less noticeable.

If cosmetics are a concern while straightening teeth, such as in a professional setting or for personal confidence, ceramic braces can be a good choice.


Another popular teeth straightening tool is aligners. Aligners can be done with a doctor, but some companies also offer a DIY version of teeth straightening. In the case of both, clear aligner trays will be swapped out periodically (just like a braces adjustment) for a new tray that helps shift the teeth.

Patients who choose to go through their orthodontist for clear aligners can expect to pay an equal price for braces or more. The primary draw with clear aligners is that they are built to be as natural-looking as possible, which many adults prefer over traditional braces.

Final thoughts

Straightening teeth as an adult is more common than ever, and many straighten their teeth due to cosmetics, oral hygiene, and physical health. Luckily, there are more teeth straightening options than ever. The right choice will depend on an individual’s preferences and needs to fit their lifestyle.a

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