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If you’ve ever longed for a beautiful smile that showed off the straight, white teeth of your dreams, perhaps it’s time to consider your options. Certainly having straight teeth and a pretty smile makes us look great, and in turn, elevates our self confidence and affects how others perceive us. But there is an added benefit: bringing your teeth into alignment can heal or alleviate problems maligned teeth commonly experience such as issues with the gums and joints. Fixing your smile is doubly beneficial as it ensures a healthier mouth and a happier you.

If you’re reticent to consider braces because you’re haunted by images of your teenage years when kids sported mouths full of metal (and headgear!), take heart that technology has come a long way toward helping people straighten their teeth in less obtrusive ways. Numerous options are now available that are not only effective, but also discreet and designed for the adult wearer.

A consultation with your dentist could open the door to your having a healthy, beautiful smile. Braces nowadays are the most popular option. They are small and come in several colors, even clear, and can even be positioned on the inside surface of your teeth, so the only one who knows you’re straightening your smile is you. Frequent, gentle brushing and a water pick keeps the braces free of food debris and their presence to a minimum.

In addition to braces, there are other options, such as Invisalign, MTM clear aligners, and veneers, all of which are available to help you get the smile you deserve. It might be time to have a conversation with your dentist. You could be very close to the smile you’ve always wanted.