Straightening teeth as an adult

I’m 41 and can finally afford to get my teeth straightened. The problem is when I see adults with braces I think they look ridiculous. Is there another way to straighten teeth?

Daniel- Madison, WI


There are a couple of ways to get your teeth straightened without traditional braces:

The first is to use Invisalign. These aligners cannot be seen, even at a conversational distance. They also straighten your teeth in about half the time of traditional braces.

Another option is to get porcelain veneers. These don’t actually straighten your teeth, but will make them look straight. They can be done in about two appointments. One to design your smile and the other to have them bonded on.

You and your dentist can discuss which is the best option for you.

This blog is brought to you by Gilbert Dentist Dr. Matt Roper.

Root exposure sensitivity

I have a lot of root exposure which has caused quite a bit of sensitivity. None of the sensitive teeth toothpastes are giving any help. Are there any other options?

Allysa W.- Birmingham, AL


Tooth sensitivity is very difficult to deal with. I can list three options for you, but recommend you talk with your dentist about which will be best for you to try.

  • Prescription fluoride rinse: There are two types of fluoride rinses, a sodium based and a stannous based. More patients have expressed getting relief from the stannous based, so I would recommend trying that one first. If after 5-6 weeks you don’t see any improvement you can try something else.
  • Fluoride varnish: This is applied to your root surfaces after your routine dental cleanings. Many patients find relief that lasts several months. It will have to be reapplied at each cleaning.
  • White composite fillings: These can be placed over your exposed root surfaces. You will get immediate relief, but it is considered a last resort option.

You may also be interested in reading about Mercury-free dental services.

This blog is brought to you by Gilbert Dentist Dr. Matt Roper.

Fillings without mercury

Hi, I have to get my first filling. My dentist wants to do one of those silver ones that has mercury in them. I really don’t want any mercury in my body. My friend Dana said there are white ones that don’t have any mercury in them. Where can I find those?

Thanks for the help, Jennie.


You are wanting what is called a composite filling. However, don’t push your dentist to do a filling he is not comfortable with. He is probably pushing the amalgam filling because that is what he is comfortable with. If you pressure him to do another kind you won’t be happy with the results, because he won’t have adequate training on how to place them.

My recommendation is that you do a search for a mercury-free dentist. They will be very confident placing composite fillings.

This blog is brought to you by Gilbert Dentist Dr. Matt Roper.