Braces Overview

Posted on: 27 October 2015

If you need to get braces, then you might have some concerns or questions. To help you out, here is an overview of how braces work and what your options are:

What are braces?

At the most basic level, braces are a tool for changing the orientation of teeth within a mouth, either for health reasons or beautification. In order to accomplish this change, braces will slowly move your teeth over a long period of time (months or even years, depending on the severity of the problem). However, a single arrangement of braces will usually be insufficient to correct your dental problem and reach the intended goal. As such, your braces will also need to be adjusted frequently throughout this process in order to ensure that the final goal is reached. 

What are your options for braces?

Here are three of the most common options for braces:

Traditional Wire Braces - If you think of braces, this is probably the first type that pops into your mind. Traditional wire braces are quite visible and are easily seen whenever you smile. They are usually the cheapest type of braces and are the most common. Their high visibility also has an upside, which is easier accessibility for your orthodontist. This will make adjustments a lot easier and faster for you, which can be pretty important if you aren't too comfortable with going to the dentist.

Ceramic Braces - Ceramic braces are pretty hard to spot, which is their primary draw. Since they are made of ceramic and not metal, they can be colored to blend in extremely well with your teeth. If you are self-conscious about braces, then ceramic will be very hard to spot, while still maintaining some of the easy accessibility of traditional wire braces. Of course, all of this comes at a cost, and ceramic braces are thus among the more expensive options. Unfortunately, ceramic is also pretty easy to stain, which can lead to problems depending on your eating and drinking habits.

Invisible Aligners - The newest type of braces is fairly unique and doesn't share many similarities with the other options. Invisible aligners are actually a series of disposable aligners that are replaced every few weeks. If you do get invisible braces, then your dentist will carefully plot out a series of aligners that will be used to adjust your teeth over time. Unlike other braces, invisible braces can be removed whenever you want, as long as you keep them in your mouth for a vast majority of the day (usually over 90%). You will need to see a dentist (such as one from Wright Center For Orthodontics) every couple of months to get your new set of aligners for that period.