The Difference Between Orthodontics for Adults and Kids

Anyone can benefit from getting orthodontic treatment, but the typical time to start still tends to be as a teenager or pre-teen. So if you’re an adult considering starting orthodontic treatment, you may be wondering what the difference is between getting treatment as an adult versus as a kid. While you can still expect the same great results, there are subtle differences to be aware of.

Getting Orthodontic Treatment as a Child or Teen

One of the most unique things about getting orthodontic treatment as a child is there is a short period when kids around the age of seven can start the first phase of a two-phase treatment plan. Known as early orthodontics , this process begins at this age because it’s when kids’ jaws are still very malleable and they have enough of their adult teeth to determine whether or not any adjustments to the shape of the jaws are needed.

When early treatment with a palatal expander, partial braces, or Invisalign First is used, a child often avoids needing teeth pulled or a longer second-phase treatment in the future.

Regardless of whether or not they had early orthodontics, teens can complete orthodontic treatment while enjoying the comfort and convenience of Invisalign with Invisalign Teen . This clever variation of the clear aligner system comes with six extra aligners in case one gets lost or damaged, along with compliance indicator strips on each one to help keep the treatment on track.

In general, kids’ teeth will move a little faster than adults’ teeth since their jaws are still growing and their teeth have not been in their current positions as long. Kids are able to choose from different options to make their braces more fun, such as WildSmiles® Braces or color braces.

Of course, that doesn’t mean adults can’t benefit from orthodontic treatment too.

Getting Orthodontic Treatment as an Adult

Many adults never got around to starting treatment as a kid, or they find themselves needing treatment again after not wearing their retainer properly. Not only will straightening your teeth get you the smile you’ve always wanted, it will help improve your dental health moving forward as well.

The longer you put off orthodontic treatment, the more likely it is that plaque will get stuck in between your teeth and cause tooth decay or gum inflammation. Misaligned bites also cause uneven tooth wear and can result in jaw pain. Straightening your teeth with orthodontic treatment can fix these issues.

Invisalign is a great choice if you want to maintain your mature appearance while you straighten their teeth. If you lost your retainer or need orthodontic treatment again for any reason, you can complete Invisalign Lite or Invisalign Express in a fraction of the time full treatment requires. Custom braces are another great choice since this treatment system provides a more precise fit, resulting in a shorter treatment time and better results – all at the same price as conventional braces.

Whether your child as young as seven is ready for treatment or you want to improve your smile as an adult, you can benefit from orthodontic treatment at any age. Contact Milnor Orthodontics today to learn more about the benefits of getting orthodontic treatment.

At Milnor Orthodontics, our experts are here to help you achieve a priceless smile. Call our office at (970) 230-3187 or visit to learn more. We're located at 1103 S. Shields St. in Fort Collins, Colorado.