When an adult decides to explore orthodontic treatment, a couple of things go through their minds. The first is usually a question — “Is this for me?” The second is, “I should do some research online.” At Appel Orthodontics, we want to help you make the best decision for your bite and your smile. We have been serving the Philadelphia, Pennsylvania area for decades and have answered these before so we thought we would answer a few of the questions or address some of the thoughts you might have as you do your research. There are a lot of misconceptions about adult orthodontic treatment, so here are our answers to some of the most common ones.

  1. The cost of orthodontic treatment is prohibitive. This is a misconception that a lot of people have either from remembering discussions about braces from sitcoms as they were growing up or from hearing other people say, “What am I going to do? My child needs braces and we can’t afford it!” We get it, and we want to make sure that you get the treatment you need without straining your monthly budget. That’s why we offer 0% financing with $0 down for up to 36 months. This allows families in our community the freedom to make oral health a reality.
  2. Orthodontic treatment is uncomfortable. If your idea of orthodontic treatment – braces in particular – is based on what your friends in middle school went through, let us assure you that a lot has changed since then! For one, you may not even need traditional braces as an adult. The correct treatment for you may be a clear aligner like Invisalign. For another, our field has zeroed in on some key advancements over the years to help make sure that your experience is as comfortable as possible. That’s not to say there isn’t some initial, low-grade irritation at first, but it goes away pretty quickly.
  3. I’ll have to be in braces for years. Most of the time, orthodontic treatment takes only a few months. There are cases that take much longer due to the complexity of the need and treatment, but that’s not the vast majority of cases we see. Bottom line: It’s going to take as long as it needs to in order to make sure that your bite and your smile are 100% and you can feel confident in knowing we’re going to take care of you every step of the way.
  4. Braces or Invisalign is only for children and teens. This is a common misconception and one that’s a little confusing to us given the number of adults we treat and the number of our friends and family members who have had orthodontic treatment as adults. It just goes to show that one’s experience isn’t the rule for everyone else. Here’s the thing: You may not personally know many adults who have gotten braces, but many adults do get braces. You will not be the only adult in Invisalign or braces, and once you start looking for it, you’ll probably notice more adults in braces when you’re out and about.
  5. People will notice. There are two parts to this response. One, we just told you you’ll probably notice more adults with braces because of pattern recognition way down in the core of your brain. Two, while that is true, you didn’t notice before, did you? Especially with clear-aligners. You’re not in middle school anymore! If another adult happens to notice your braces, nine times out of ten, they will think positively about an adult taking control of their health and appearance. That makes you awesome. In sum, most people won’t notice, and those who do think you’re a proactive adult which just lets people know how amazing you are.
  6. Orthodontic treatment is superficial. This is what some direct to customer organizations make people think: it’s all about the straight teeth that people can see. That is a huge misconception and one that can really foul up your dental and digestive health. One of the major benefits of going to a licensed orthodontic practice is that we can straighten your teeth and we do it in such a way as to make sure all of your teeth match up so that your bite is as perfect and effective as can be. You don’t want to have straight teeth and not be able to bite down naturally all the way. That’s why treatment is way more than superficial.
  7. Everyone who offers teeth straightening is an orthodontist. Nope! An orthodontist is a person who has finished dental school and has completed additional years of education and practice to become a licensed specialist in orthodontic treatment. But not everyone offering braces or aligners has completed that kind of training. You risk damage to the face and smile, possibly permanent damage, if you trust your orthodontic treatment to someone who hasn’t been trained and licensed to take care of the position of your teeth and bite.


There you have it! We hope these answers are helpful to you. If you want to talk about your desire for your smile and bite, give us a call and we’ll be glad to schedule you for a consultation.

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