What do you know about orthodontics? You know it has something to do with your teeth. You know you often hear people with braces say they must attend their orthodontist appointment. But you’re unsure what orthodontics entails.
An orthodontist is a dental specialist qualified to treat irregularities in the teeth and jaws. Their specialty is diagnosing, preventing, and treating abnormalities in the jaw and teeth, and they work with people of all ages. Going to the orthodontist is not on anyone’s list of top five favorite places. Still, most orthodontists are very different from Willy Wonka’s dad in the 2005 “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.” Orthodontist offices are not scary at all. Our main goal is the same as yours: to give you a beautiful smile and a healthy mouth and jaw.
The history of orthodontics is quite interesting, and we love some excellent orthodontic trivia, so here are seven fun facts about orthodontics:
1. 4 Million Americans Currently Have Braces
The state of the economy doesn’t matter; people will always pay for a beautiful and enhanced smile. Approximately 4 million Americans, including children, teens, and adults, have braces. Straight teeth will never go out of style.
Braces are not just for kids. If you want straighter teeth but think you’re too old, think again! About one in five patients seeking orthodontic treatment is an adult; many are over 50 years old. Braces and aligners are for everyone, and there are so many different options to choose from. Many adults opt for Invisalign after braces if they had braces many years ago, but some of their teeth have shifted.
2. The Word “Orthodontics” Is Of Greek Origin
At the risk of sounding like the dad from “My Big Fat Greek Wedding,” did you know the word is originally from the Greek language? “Ortho” means straight or correct, and “dont” (not don’t) means tooth. Together, the word “orthodontics” translates to straight teeth.
3. Orthodontics Was The First Dental Specialty In 1900
Being the first orthodontist in the world, Edward H. Angle founded orthodontics as a dental specialty in 1900. Angle even established what is known today as the American Association of Orthodontics.
4. People Have Always Wanted Straight Teeth
The struggle of crooked teeth is a tale as old as time. Straight teeth are not a modern fad. People have been dealing with crooked teeth for ages. Archeological findings show Egyptian mummies with metal bands wrapped around their teeth. Aren’t you grateful for our modern orthodontic technology and equipment?
5. All Orthodontists Are Dentists, But Not All Dentists Are Orthodontists
All orthodontists became dentists by completing four years of dental school but then went on for another two to three years of school (with about 3,700 hours of training) at an accredited orthodontic residency program. Orthodontics is a dental specialty. Many dentists do aligners or night guards, but they will refer you to an orthodontist if there are severe jaw alignment or bite issues for braces or other interventions.
6. Teeth Move In Response To Pressure
Were you an avid thumb sucker well into childhood, and your two front teeth paid the price? That is a real thing. Some types of pressure are beneficial, and some harm your teeth and bite.
Prolonged pacifier dependence, thumb-sucking, and irregular swallowing are types of stress that could cause damage. These actions push your teeth out of place and distort the bone. Braces and aligners apply constant and gentle pressure that slowly guides your teeth into their ideal positions. That is considered good pressure.
7. Seven Is The Magic Age To Begin Orthodontic Treatment
People often ask when a child should first go to the orthodontist. According to the American Association of Orthodontics, a child should see an orthodontist by age seven or as soon as they see any irregularities, even if they don’t have all their adult teeth yet.
Treatment is much easier and less intense when your orthodontist can catch and treat it early on before it starts creating many other problems.
Famous Faces With Braces
Sometimes, we look at celebrities and assume they come from a different realm than us: A domain of genetically gifted people who were born with beautiful teeth. But that is just not the case. All celebrities with perfectly straight teeth had braces or Invisalign; many have veneers. Some of your favorite stars such as Justin Beiber, Gisele Bündchen, Zendaya, Tom Cruise, Billie Eilish, Zac Efron, Khloe Kardashian, Anna Kendrick, Demi Lovato, Katy Perry, and Oprah had Invisalign.
Some famous faces, such as Angelina Jolie, Serena Williams, Emma Watson, Kendall Jenner, Selena Gomez, Gwen Stefani, Ariel Winter, Faith Hill, Drew Barrymore, and Jaden and Willow Smith, had braces.
Famous Faces Who Have Veneers
Sometimes, braces and aligners alone don’t give someone the look they want. Many celebrities opt for veneers. Here’s a list of some famous faces who have veneers:
- Tom Cruise
- Zac Efron
- Nicolas Cage
- George Clooney
- Jim Carrey
- Morgan Freeman
- Demi Moore
- Celine Dion
- Niall Horan
- Miley Cyrus
- Cardi B
- Cheryl Cole
- Victoria Beckham
- Keith Urban
- Chris Rock
- Joe Biden
- Cristiano Ronaldo
- Kate Beckinsale
- Nicole Kidman
All this is to say that hardly anyone is born with perfect teeth, and even celebrities go to great lengths to improve them.
We love teeth, and the fantastic transformation that braces, aligners, and other orthodontic work can do for people wanting to boost their confidence. Although your motivation for going to your Utah orthodontist may be purely cosmetic, orthodontic treatment is also about fixing jaw and alignment issues affecting your biting, chewing, or speaking. Investing in your smile is not in vain; it may improve your overall quality of life.