Get The Smile You’ve Always Wanted!
Boost your confidence with traditional braces or Invisalign!
What To KnowEveryone wants a dazzling smile, but making sure that your teeth stay white is only half of the equation.
Straight, even teeth are also essential to ensuring that you have a smile that lights up any room.
Many people think that braces are just for kids, but that just isn’t true. Today, braces are becoming more and more popular among adults as well. However, if you’re considering braces for yourself or your family member, it is important to understand the available options before contacting an orthodontist.
Varieties Of Braces
Braces made of stainless steel are the most traditional and commonly used treatment for crooked teeth today, but less visible options such as clear plastic or ceramic braces are also available. Unlike metal braces, these options are designed to blend in with the natural color of your teeth. However, these options are often more prone to discoloration and staining. Once treatment has been completed, they can also become fragile and more difficult to remove.
Positioned behind the teeth, lingual braces are another popular alternative to traditional braces. Given their location, lingual braces are also nearly invisible when equipped. However, some patients have noted that these braces can be irritating and restrictive to the tongue.
How Braces Work
Braces apply pressure to your teeth in incremental stages over time, re-positioning them into a straighter smile. During each stage of the re-positioning process, the sockets in your gums are reformed, allowing the teeth to straighten. Standard braces themselves consist of brackets attached to teeth, themselves attached to wires that are periodically tightened to move the teeth. This process can cause some initial discomfort, but it fades quickly and the braces themselves do not cause pain. This process is exactly the same for both children and adult braces. However, the treatment may take longer for adults as their bones have already stopped growing, so in some cases the desired result may require more stages than it would in a child. Regardless of the patient’s age, the treatment time ultimately depends on the amount of and distance between the teeth that must be re-positioned. This means that every case is unique, but braces are typically worn for 1-3 years.
When it comes time to remove the braces, it will then be necessary to wear a retainer in order for the teeth to maintain their new position. The amount of time that the retainer is required can last anywhere from six months or longer depending on the needs of the patient. Most modern retainers are made of a clear plastic and are held against your teeth through suction. Fortunately, the retainer is only required while sleeping, and won’t get in the way of your everyday life. All you’ll need to think about is how great your new smile looks!
Invisalign Takes a Modern Approach
Traditional metal braces are no longer the only option if you want a straighter, more radiant smile. Nearly invisible on your teeth, Invisalign braces are completely clear and removable, making them an extremely popular choice among adults. No irritating wires or brackets are involved at all and their smooth thermoplastic design ensures your lasting comfort.
The truly innovative element of Invisalign braces is how they can be customized. Everything from initial position of your teeth to their planned final placement is mapped out by computer, and using this information, a series of custom aligners are made to perfectly match your smile. This allows you to see your final results before you even begin the process. This foresight also means that you’re given a greater degree of control over the straightening process, unlike traditional metal braces. During each stage of treatment, only the teeth that you need to move actually do. Every two to three weeks, your aligner is swapped out for the next one in the series until your teeth are as straight and beautiful as desired. The time and amount of different aligners required varies from patient to patient, but Invisalign treatment generally last from one year to 18 months and is far more comfortable than having to wear metal braces.
Another advantage to Invisalign braces is that they are completely removable, allowing you to eat, drink, and brush your teeth with ease. As metal braces cannot be removed for cleaning and eating, tooth decay and shortening of the gums are a common problem that does not affect those using Invisalign. This also makes it easier for your dentist to evaluate your progress when you go into the office for a checkup, so no more metal getting in the way of a proper x-ray. Unlike traditional braces, the removability factor of Invisalign treatment also means that you are not limited by what you can and cannot consume, so gum chewers need not worry.