How Will Braces Be in 100 Years?
One can never really tell what the future holds. But if history is any guide, the future of orthodontics looks bright. We’ve come a long way over the years and can now provide better treatment than ever to those who want to improve their smiles. So, with modern orthodontics already being so advanced, what do the next 100 years of orthodontics look like?
How Orthodontics Has Improved
To get an idea of what future orthodontic treatment could be like, it’s helpful to take a quick look at the past. Around 100 years ago, braces were commonly made out of gold due to the material’s flexibility. Of course, this meant braces were very expensive, making orthodontic treatment out of reach for most people.
Orthodontists began using stainless steel for braces in the 1970s, making orthodontic treatment affordable for more patients. However, these early forms of braces were fairly clunky, uncomfortable, and unpleasantly visible.
One of the biggest innovations in orthodontics arrived in 1997 with the Invisalign Clear Aligner System, which suddenly allowed patients to straighten their teeth with invisible aligners they could remove for meals. This treatment system has only improved over the years with superior materials and the addition of Invisalign attachments.
Over the past decade, digital technology has transformed how we communicate and interact with the world. These changes are now shaping how we improve patients’ smiles. Here at Milnor Orthodontics, you can complete treatment with Invisalign simply by making one visit to the office to get x-rays and a digital scan with the iTero® scanner. Then you use the Dental Monitoring system to track your progress by sending in photos for regular digital checkups throughout your treatment.
You can even use Dental Monitoring to complete the entirety of your treatment virtually as long as you send recent panoramic x-ray images from your dentist to our office. By using a digital scan box to take digital images of your teeth combined with the x-rays, we can create custom clear aligners and mail them to you.
This means you can get the smile you’ve always wanted from a top orthodontist without ever leaving your home. Or, embark on that extended vacation you’ve always been dreaming about without worrying about how it will interfere with your treatment.
Future of Orthodontics
Given the advanced state of modern orthodontics, it can only be assumed that treatment will become more convenient and effective for patients. While clear, removable aligners already provide a great experience, patients could possibly complete treatment using a system that’s even more user-friendly. Whether it’s appliances that are somehow less visible or use less material, or another way to straighten teeth without using orthodontic appliances at all, it’s likely that patients a century from now will find our current treatment systems to be “clunky.” Odds are, patients will be able to get their results even faster as well.
Another possibility for orthodontics in the future is a way to help teeth grow in straight and evenly spaced in the first place, eliminating the need for treatment later in life. This would be an interesting addition to early orthodontics, which already helps a patient’s jaws prepare for the arrival of their adult teeth.
Being able to learn what types of treatment are best for you and getting an estimated cost without visiting an orthodontist office is another recent advancement in treatment. Take advantage of this convenience and complete a virtual consultation today to learn more about how we make orthodontic treatment easier than ever.
At Milnor Orthodontics, our experts are here to help you achieve a priceless smile. Call our office at (970) 230-3187 or visit milnororthodontics.com to learn more. We're located at 1103 S. Shields St. in Fort Collins, Colorado.