Types of Braces
Traditional Metal Braces
Metal braces are made from stainless steel and are one of the most traditional forms of teeth straightening. Using appliances called brackets and archwires, metal braces apply a constant pressure to the teeth. This pressure allows for the membrane holding your teeth in place to move slowly. Over time, metal braces create a new, straight smile. Colored elastics (small rubber bands) can be used to allow patients to show off their creativity!
Self-ligating braces have a similar appearance to traditional metal braces, however, they work differently to provide straighter teeth. The main difference between self-ligating and traditional braces is that self-ligating braces do not require the use of elastics because they have a specialized clip that helps the archwire guide the teeth into place.
There are many benefits of using self-ligating braces. For example, because self-ligating braces do not require the use of elastics then this reduces the number of adjustments needing made. Furthermore, self-ligating braces helps reduce the amount pressure on a person’s teeth than traditional braces, which means less discomfort for the patient overall.
Clear (Ceramic) Braces
Ceramic brace, which are clear in color, allow patients to receive treatment without altering their appearance as much as traditional braces. Ceramic braces are mainly used on older patients who are looking to maintain their appearance during treatment.
There are some differences between ceramic and metal braces, the main one being the structure of the braces themselves. Ceramic braces are more fragile than metal, and therefore require more attention. Because of this, they are mostly used only on upper front teeth.
Clear aligners are nearly invisible trays that straighten your teeth in the same way that older methods of braces do. Many patients find clear aligners to be the most hassle-free and comfortable straightening method, due to the fact that they can be taken out while eating, brushing, or flossing. Because there is no metal involved, clear aligners also don’t have a chance to leave abrasions the same way metal braces do. Clear aligners can also sometimes be a quicker method of straightening, when compared to traditional braces.
It is important to note that, even though aligners can be taken out, they should be kept in as often as possible to receive the quickest and best results. Good oral hygiene is also a necessity in patients that use clear aligners, in order to maintain their effectiveness. For example, patients with clear aligners should brush their teeth after every meal, before putting the aligners back in.