It’s a new year and you have made a commitment to achieve that perfect smile you have always wanted! You’ll be happy to know that there are multiple orthodontic options to help you achieve the best results.
Traditional Metal Braces
These are what most people envision when they think about braces. Traditional metal braces are a tried and true method in achieving your best smile. Traditional metal braces are composed of metal brackets that are attached to the teeth and a wire that connects the brackets together. Think of the brackets like “handles” on the teeth, while the wire is the flexible part that connects to the handles and moves the teeth. Today’s metal brackets are much smaller than they used to be, and the special wires that we use are able to move teeth quickly with less soreness and discomfort. Furthermore, you can customize your braces by choosing which colors you would like. These colors tie the wire into the bracket and also allow you to customize your braces to your chosen look. With special holidays and events coming up, feel free to tailor your smile to your liking!
Ceramic braces offer the best of both worlds – a clear/nearly invisible option that will efficiently and effectively line up your teeth. Ceramic braces operate in the same way as traditional metal braces – brackets attached to the teeth, a wire that shifts the teeth, and ties that hold the wire in place. The benefit with these braces are that the brackets are ceramic and are nearly invisible. While you can still pick different colors to customize your braces, we also carry clear/ceramic colored ties to make your braces even less noticeable. Many patients who want the efficiency of braces but a more aesthetic option chose ceramic braces and love that people hardly notice their braces.
Self Ligating Braces
Self ligating braces are a relatively new type of bracket that offers additional benefits when it comes to your orthodontic treatment. Like traditional metal or ceramic braces, self ligating brackets are connected to the teeth and connected to each other by a wire. Where self ligating brackets differ is each bracket has a small metal door that holds the wire in place, removing the need for elastic ties. The benefit of this door mechanism is it allows wire to be “active” for a longer period of time, meaning you can come in less often and treatment time will not take any longer, and in some cases can even be shorter than expected. Self ligating braces are a great option for people who live further away, have a lot of after work/school activities, or generally cannot come in as often. Furthermore, if you would still like color ties to customize your braces, we can still place them over the brackets as well.
Invisalign/Clear Aligner Therapy
Clear aligners such as Invisalign, offer a different approach to lining up and straightening teeth. Rather than using brackets and wires to move teeth into a better position, patients wear clear flexible trays to move the teeth and shift the bite. How does this happen? The first step is to take an impression, or mold, of the teeth and create a series of trays that the patient will wear for several weeks at a time. Each successive tray has minor movements in it that slowly but surely shift the teeth into the right spot. Because the trays have to be worn to move the teeth, it’s very important to wear clear aligners all the time. In fact, Invisalign suggests wearing the trays 22 hours out of the 24 hour day, meaning you really only want your trays out when you are eating or brushing.
If you do a good job wearing your trays, you’ll begin to see your teeth and bite shifting into the right position! Clear aligners are an awesome option for patients who want a nearly invisible method of lining up their teeth that will also still allow them to eat easily and clean their teeth easily. Invisalign works great lining up crooked teeth and closing small gaps, but for more complex problems such as issues with the bite, severe crowding, and closing large spaces, braces may be more efficient at achieving the best results. Consulting with your orthodontist if you are a candidate for Invisalign/Clear Aligner Therapy is the first step to see if this is a good option for you.
As you can see, orthodontics has progressed throughout the years to offer patients a wide variety of options to fulfill their needs. Consult with Dr. Rebong at SoCo Dental Specialty Group to see which option is the best for you and start your journey to a perfect smile today. Call us for a consultation and get the smile you’ve always wanted!
-Dr. Ray Rebong