Currently, COVID-19 lockdown restrictions are lifting around the world. As the pandemic winds down, there seems to be an uptick in patients looking to straighten their teeth. A study published by the British Dental Journal reveals an increase in adult orthodontics.

Why The Uptick?

There’s a couple of factors for this. Firstly, something that is known as the “Zoom Boom”. The COVID-19 pandemic had people on video calls, instead of in the office, each day. Therefore, we were all staring at our own faces and dissecting imperfections, more than ever.

There’s another reason for the increase in backlog. Many adults who were interested in orthodontics before March 2020 were forced to put plans on hold. The closure of dental offices in the spring of 2020 created a bottleneck in appointments.

More Than Just Aesthetics…

Sure, orthodontics helps with straightening your teeth. However, treatments also improve oral health. Plaque build-up increases with crooked teeth. Straighter teeth are easier to brush and floss. This reduces your risk of gum inflammation and gum disease, as well as cavities. Additionally, an improper bite adds to wear and tear, chipping, and teeth grinding. This creates joint and jaw problems like TMJ pain, migraines, and headaches. Fixing misaligned teeth helps with the look of your smile. It also assists with your overall well-being.

According to studies, crooked teeth also have a major impact on your confidence. A 2019 survey revealed that seven out of 10 Americans are self-conscious about their smile. In fact, half of the participants stated they close their mouths while smiling, because of self-esteem issues.

hipster man smiling, showing off his metal braces

DIY Braces Versus Going To Your Local Blue Bell Dentist

Another interesting part of the research reveals a high demand for “DIY Braces”. These are direct consumer teeth-straightening products. Close to 65% of dentists who took part in the study stated a concern that more patients might be looking for “DIY Braces” after lockdowns lifted.

These direct-to-consumer orthodontics might seem like a great solution. However, it’s always best to reach out to your dental office in Blue Bell, PA. They provide questions to your answers when needed. Plus, they can offer the best option depending on your smile goals. Finally, customized treatment plans fit each patient, perfectly. It’s important to note, some insurance plans will cover a part of your orthodontic treatment. It depends on your dental insurance coverage.

Braces Versus Clear Aligners

There are a variety of orthodontic treatments currently available. What you choose depends on the work that needs to be done, plus your lifestyle. While braces are well-known, clear aligners are becoming quite popular, too. Both options have their benefits and disadvantages.

One pro to braces is that they are highly effective. Another is there’s never a worry about losing them. That’s because they are directly on your teeth! A disadvantage is dietary restrictions. Foods like nuts, chewy candy, and popcorn will damage the wire or brackets. You should also cut your food into small pieces. This will make it easier to chew.

Meanwhile, aligners are clear and thin trays placed in your mouth. They are removable and should be worn about 22 hours out of the day. You take them out when you eat and clean your teeth. Therefore, no dietary restrictions with them. As they are clear, they aren’t noticeable. Your Blue Bell dentist will give you sets of aligner trays to move your teeth using gentle pressure. Every two weeks or so, you change your aligners out.