Can removable appliances be effective for adults?

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Paul UK
Posts: 5
Joined: Mon Sep 03, 2007 8:01 am
Location: Greater Manchester, UK

Can removable appliances be effective for adults?

#1 Post by Paul UK »


I've been reading a number of the threads from other users and I'm impressed by the number of members who have plucked up the courage (and £££s!) to get their teeth sorted out later in life!!

Quick question to gauge general opinion, although I intend to visit a dentist about it soon enough as well:

I'm wondering whether a removable Hawley-type appliance would be any use for an adult (ie myself) who has reasonably straight teeth except for a slight overbite and spacing of the cental upper incisors.

I did wear a removable brace in my late teens to correct an impacted canine.

Aside: At the age of 16 my dentist referred me to the orthodontist at the local hospital where they duly extracted the stubborn "milk" tooth and uncovered the impacted eye tooth. When the stitches has dissolved and the swelling had gone down, the ortho was pleasantly surprised that the eye tooth had mainly sorted itself out so they just fitted a plate with a spring that I had to clip to a metal button glued to the front of the canine to guide it down a bit more; he didn't think I required a full set of fixed braces- perhaps I'm the only person on the forum to have ever worn just one lonely bracket cemented to my teeth! This was replaced by a second appliance with a bow across the front and one or two other little springs and stuff to do minor tweaks (I believe one of the little tweaks may have been to reduce the slight spacing between the insisors.)

However, I soon got distracted by A-Levels/university so I just "fizzled" out wearing the brace once it seemed to have done its job.

Now, 10 years later, I'm just wondering whether I could have achieved a better result if I'd been a bit more proactive and kept myself up with the treatment for longer earlier on. In particular, whether my overbite might have reduced/ disappeared.

In addition, I seem to have drifted back into an occasional "finger sucking" habit at night (much to my wife's annoyance!) that all but diappeared when I wore the "foreign object" brace in my mouth to break the habit. (Not sure if this habit is exactly helping the slight overbite thing, either!)

Just wondering whether anyone has had success being treated with removable braces later in life (I understand that adult teeth tend to require the constant pressure of a fixed appliance even more).

By the way, (despite all your wonderful stories), I am reluctant to get a full set of braces though, because of;
  • the cost (you normally have to pay out of pocket for orthodontic work in the UK)
  • I feel happy with my lower teeth and most of my upper arch (except the central few) so it really seems a bit over-kill
  • I really don't think I have the confidence to go through with it (poor, I know!!)
As I mentioned, I intend to approach my dentist about this soon- just wanted to arm myself with some suggestions/ideas first.[/i]

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