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Exploring the Different Types of Braces for Orthodontic Treatment

Crooked teeth increase the risk of tooth decay and can affect self-confidence. A Health Policy Institute fact sheet revealed that 1 in 4 adults avoid smiling due to the condition of their mouth and teeth. Data also showed that 82% of adults believe that bright, straight teeth help them get ahead in life. For many, braces are the solution.

Braces can help you achieve a picture-perfect smile by safely shifting the teeth into the proper position. They can also help in other ways, such as addressing spacing issues, correcting your bite, and resolving overcrowding in the mouth. The first step is choosing your braces. Explore different types of braces for orthodontic treatment and learn how your Melbourne, FL, dentist can help you work toward a healthy, beautiful smile.

Common Types of Braces for Orthodontic Treatment

1. Metal Braces

In decades past, metal braces were the only type of braces available. That is no longer the case. Regardless, metal braces are highly effective at straightening the teeth, and many patients enjoy customizing their braces with fun colors.

Traditional metal braces use stainless steel bands, brackets, and thin wires to move the teeth into the proper position over time gently. This process involves several steps. First, your Melbourne, Florida, dentist will glue a bracket onto each tooth, followed by a flexible wire over each bracket. Finally, elastic bands keep the wire in place.

2. Ceramic Braces

Ceramic braces, also known as clear braces, consist of tooth-colored or clear ceramic brackets that attach to the tooth surface. Clear or tooth-colored wires and rubber bands are also used.

Ceramic is not as harsh as stainless steel, so it is usually a less painful treatment than traditional metal braces. Ceramic braces are also more discreet. As visible braces can be embarrassing for some adults, ceramic braces are a less noticeable alternative. They are also very durable and difficult to damage.

3. Self-Ligating Braces

Self-ligating braces use a unique built-in system to secure wires to brackets. There are two main types: active and passive. Active brackets have a sliding spring clip mechanism that applies an active force to the archwire, while passive brackets use a simple sliding mechanism.

Despite the name, self-ligating braces still require periodic adjustments, similar to traditional metal braces. This means regular visits to your orthodontist. These adjustments are designed to appropriately modify the force on the teeth as they shift into their new positions.

4. Lingual Braces

Lingual braces are a type of invisible braces. What makes lingual braces different from other invisible braces, such as ceramic braces and clear aligners, is that they are fixed to the back or “lingual” side of your teeth.

There are several benefits of lingual braces. First, the brackets, wires, and elastic bands are fixed to the back of your teeth, ensuring no one sees them unless your mouth is opened wide. They also require fewer lifestyle changes. While all patients experience some changes after getting braces, the lifestyle changes needed after getting lingual braces are usually less than those required for metal braces.

5. Clear Aligners

Clear aligners have become one of the most popular braces options in recent years—and not just because of their transparency. Clear braces, such as Invisalign, can correct many orthodontic issues, such as crooked teeth, overcrowding, overbites, and underbites. However, they’re best suited for mild to moderate cases.

Clear aligners are removable, Unlike metal braces with brackets and wires that attach to your teeth. This means you can remove them to brush and eat. They are custom-fitted for your mouth and gradually move your teeth into the proper position.

Ask About Cosmetic Dentistry at Artistic Touch Dentistry

In Melbourne, FL, Artistic Touch Dentistry offers general and cosmetic dentistry services, including Invisalign braces. Invisalign allows patients to straighten their teeth discretely with the convenience of clear aligners. For more information about Invisalign braces or an appointment, contact Artistic Touch Dentistry at (321) 724-1400.