There Are 3 Types of Braces
One of the most popular dental treatments available to straighten teeth or close tooth gaps is braces. There are three different types of braces: metal, ceramic and invisalign. The type of braces to be used depends on the extent of correction needed based on complete assessment by an orthodontist.
If your dentist is not an orthodontist, you can easily ask for a referral. After you have already chosen an orthodontist, you need to take a clinical exam. Dental impressions, photos and x-rays of your teeth, mouth and face are also needed for evaluation.
The most common type of braces is made of metal. This is the most affordable but unfortunately, can stain teeth. Metal braces are made of stainless steel and nickel titanium. If you choose this type of braces, brackets will be bonded on each tooth and joined using arch wires. Arch wires are used to track the movement of the teeth which may be made of metal, tooth-colored or clear. Elastics are then placed to hold the arch wires. If you are young or just want to play it up, you can use colorful elastics and ligatures which are available in different colors.
If you are not comfortable using metal, you may opt for the ceramic type. Although this is not as strong as metal braces, this is very pleasing to the eye as they come in clear and tooth-color. This is a popular choice for those who are concerned with aesthetic appeal. The patient has to take note though that ceramic braces require more attention when it comes to oral hygiene so you have to be committed and cautious with your activities throughout the treatment stage.
If you are looking for braces that are hardly noticeable or almost invisible, then Invisalign is the perfect choice for you. This type is recommended for minor correction though as it is best for gradual movement of the teeth. If you are suited for this type, you would not have a problem when you need to brush and floss as this is easily removable and just as easy to put back in.
If you really don’t want anything to show, you can check out lingual braces. Instead of bonding the brackets on the front of the teeth, this type goes to the backside of the teeth. However, this is an expensive choice and not-so-comfortable as it interferes with speaking and may cause damage to the tongue as well. It is also not easy to adjust to so you need to think twice if you are considering lingual braces.
Length of Treatment
The duration of treatment depends on the individual’s situation. On the average, it is recommended to wear braces between one and three years. After the braces have been taken off, teeth are cleaned thoroughly and new bite impressions and x-rays are taken to assess if the braces accomplished its purpose. You need to wear retainers to hold the teeth in its new position for six months straight and then during sleep for a few more years to help your gums, bone and muscles adapt to its new position.