No matter what type they are, the goal of braces is to align the patient’s teeth by applying gentle pressure. The different styles reflect the need of the patients for comfort, ease of care and aesthetics. Some teenagers dislike the traditional stainless steel braces and brackets, while some adults prefer that their friends and co-workers not know they have to wear braces at all. Here are some different types of braces:
These are the metal braces that most people think of when they think of braces. They are made of brackets that are threaded with wire and rubber bands. They are less expensive than other types of braces and align the teeth a bit faster. The good news about these braces is that they are lighter and more comfortable than those worn in prior generations. Patients can also choose the colors of the rubber bands.
Self-ligating braces resemble traditional braces except that they do not use rubber band ties. Instead, brackets have clips that grip on to the wire. Self-ligating braces are said to trap less food and are supposed to be more comfortable. Patients who wear self-ligating braces also don’t have to visit their orthodontist as frequently. They work a bit faster than traditional braces.
These are also called ceramic braces, and the brackets and even the wires are the same color and texture as the patient’s teeth. Because of this, tooth-colored braces are hard to see. Though they cost more than traditional braces, they require the same amount of care as traditional braces.
These braces are interesting because they are placed on the inside of the tooth. Installing lingual braces is as much an art form as it is a skill on the part of the orthodontist, and the cost of these braces reflect that. Their one benefit is that they can’t be easily seen. They are best worn by adults, who are more diligent about making sure that the brackets, which they can’t easily see either, are kept clean.
Aligners can also be thought of as types of braces in that their job is to straighten the teeth over time. Aligners have an advantage over other types of braces in that the patient can take them out when they need to eat or brush their teeth. Aligners are clear plastic trays that are all but invisible when they are worn and are worn for most of the day. The trays are changed every two weeks or so by the orthodontist as the patient’s teeth come more and more into alignment. They take about the same time to work as traditional braces.
Contact Us for More Information on Braces
If you believe you or a member of your family can benefit from braces, don’t hesitate to make an appointment with Petty & Bielik Orthodontics! At our convenient location in Oak Lawn, our caring and devoted team of professionals will be happy to explain all the types of braces in greater detail and help you decide which one would be right for you. Contact us today to set up your consultation – we look forward to speaking with you!