Types of Braces

For the vast majority of orthodontic patients, wearing fixed appliances (commonly called braces) will be a major part of treatment — and those braces, for the most part, will be the familiar silvery-metal type. But while they’re still quite popular, traditional-looking metal braces are no longer the only game in town! Let’s have a look at some of the options available in orthodontic appliances.

First, we should distinguish between fixed and removable appliances. Fixed appliances like braces are attached to the teeth by metal bands and special cement. They aren’t normally taken off until treatment is complete. Removable appliances, such as clear aligners, are typically worn some 22 hours per day, but may be easily taken off as needed. While clear aligners can be effective in treating mild to moderate orthodontic problems, fixed appliances are generally needed for more comprehensive treatment.

Metal Braces

Screen Shot 2016-06-10 at 8.58.50 AMTypically made of high-grade stainless steel, traditional metal braces remain by far the most common type of fixed orthodontic appliances. They consist of metal bands that wrap around the molars in back, and smaller metal brackets that are cemented to the front surfaces of the other teeth. A thin, springy metal wire, running through the brackets, gently guides the teeth into a proper position. This archwire may be fixed to the brackets by flexible elastics, metal ties, or other types of clasps.

There are many good reasons why time-tested metal braces remain popular — because they offer a reliable, effective and economical treatment option. In contrast to the appliances of the past, today’s braces are actually smaller, lighter, and more comfortable to wear. If you want a less traditional look, you may be able to choose colorful elastics for the brackets, or other modifications.

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Clear Braces

Ceramic braces are made of translucent (clear) material and they are small, strong, comfortable and very discreet. For very good reasons, they’re a popular option amongst adults, teens, and children.

They are made of a fine-grained ceramic material that blends in beautifully with the natural color of your teeth, and offers enhanced stain resistance. Ultra-small translucent brackets provide a more attractive alternative to traditional metal braces, while smoother edges make for a more comfortable fit.

If you are wondering if Clear Braces are the right treatment option for you, the best thing to do is to come in for a consultation with one of our doctors.

Invisalign Aligners

As an alternative to the fixed type of orthodontic appliances mentioned above, clear aligners are removable. They are actually a series of clear plastic “trays” that fit over your teeth exactly. Each tray is part of a series of trays that move your teeth a little bit at a time until they are in the proper position. Your trays are designed with the help of specialized computer software that generates a virtual model of your bite. Learn more about Invisalign.

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Invisalign Teen

Let Invisalign® Teen help perfect your smile using clear aligners so your teenage memories can be captured with confidence. Invisalign® Teen aligners are removable and virtually invisible, which means you can straighten your teeth without anyone knowing.

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