Types of Braces: What Are My Options?

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Everyone dreams of that perfect smile for themselves, you know that one that makes them look great and gives them the confidence to take on the world. Unfortunately, not everyone is born with impeccably straight teeth and will seek out assistance through orthodontics. With the technology that has come along since their invention in the 1800’s, there are so many more options for patients to find a corrective solution that would benefit them and their lifestyles. 

The most prominent corrective solution are metal braces. These types of braces are the more traditional version and often pictured when someone thinks of “braces”. These metal brackets and wires are mostly seen on young children and teenagers, and can create a pleasant experience for them by the colored bands, letting them express themselves creatively. With modern advancements, brackets for metal braces, have become smaller and less noticeable. This is also the most inexpensive option for dental corrective solutions. Depending on the severity of a patient’s case, these types of braces are the only option. 

Ceramic Braces work just like traditional metal braces and have the same size and shape, except that the brackets attached to the teeth are made of ceramic. These ceramic brackets can be clear or colored to blend with the teeth, making them less noticeable. Some orthodontics may even offer a tooth colored wire that lowers noticeability further. Ceramic brackets can move teeth a little faster than other solutions, just like traditional braces, but are more expensive than their metal counterparts. These brackets can actually stain much easier if patients don’t care for them properly. 

Invisalign or plastic aligners are the most modern type of orthodontic treatments. This is the most popular solution with adults who are trying to correct their smiles unnoticeably. This system of orthodontics is used by customizing a series of plastic trays, ranging from 18 to 30 different sets, that are molded from the patients mouth that will be worn throughout the day and night. Patients are expected to wear these trays at all times except when they are eating, flossing or brushing their teeth. These trays will then be switched every couple of weeks slowly straightening and correcting smiles, until the desirable result is achieved. These trays are the lease noticeable corrective option.

Some of the downfalls of Invisalign or plastic aligners are that they are the most expensive option of orthodontic treatments, and usually only available for adults and teens. If patients have serious dental issues that need corrective orthodontic treatments, aligners will not work for those problems. The aligners can easily be misplaced and get lost which can become costly to replace. Treatments with Invisalign or aligners can take a little longer to correct some smiles than when using traditional or ceramic braces. 

Most people are under the assumption that braces or orthodontic treatments are just for correcting crooked teeth, however there are other reasons to look into getting corrective solutions through orthodontics. Patients who have overlapping or overcrowding of teeth will benefit by helping teeth get the correct spacing. Some patients may suffer from malocclusion, or “bad bite”, which is when there is a difference in the top and bottom jaw sizes. These are also known as overbites and under bites. 

The Woodlands Orthodontist team will be able to help you decided which treatment may be right for you. 

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