Types of Braces & Which is Best – Richardsons Hospital
Underbites, overbites, misaligned teeth, crowded teeth, and large gaps between the teeth are some dental problems that can be fixed using braces. And there are just as many different options when choosing the types of braces. Here, we have listed some of the common types of braces and the pros and cons associated with each type.
Types Of Braces
The following are the different types of braces:
- Metal braces
- Ceramic braces
- Clear Aligners
- Self-ligating braces
- Lingual braces
These traditional braces are the most common types of braces and the most affordable as well. Dentists have been using them for over 100 years – while they used to be bulky in the past, they’re now much more comfortable and effective. Metal braces use high-grade stainless steel brackets, bands, and wires to apply gentle pressure on the teeth to move them to their original position. The dentist bonds the brackets to each tooth with glue and then places an archwire over the brackets. Tiny elastic bands keep the wires in place.
Pros and Cons – Metal braces are efficient and can treat almost all periodontal issues. They’re affordable when compared to other different braces for teeth. However, they look unsightly and require proper hygiene. They can be uncomfortable, especially during the initial period, irritating the gums and lips. Also, you’ll be advised against certain foods, including candy, popcorn, and bagels.
If you’re looking for different types of braces that are less noticeable yet work as efficiently as their metal counterparts, we suggest ceramic braces. They work the same way as metal braces, except that the brackets and ligatures are tooth colored and hence not as unappealing as the latter. The brackets are made using aluminum oxide, one of the hardest minerals and very sturdy. Just as with metal braces, archwires connect the brackets and the bands.
Pros & Cons – Ceramic braces are visible but less so. The brackets come in different shades of white (to match the color of your teeth), and so are the archwires. They are affordable but need proper care and hygiene and could even stain the braces, depending on your diet and brushing habits.
Self-ligating braces are similar to traditional braces, except the system uses self-litigating brackets instead of the usual ones. While tiny elastic bands, called ligatures, connect the brackets to the archwire, self-ligating braces have a special bracket that attaches directly to the wire. This allows a more streamlined treatment that doesn’t involve unsightly rubber bands. There are two types of self-ligating braces – active and passive. While active braces use a sliding slip clip mechanism to apply active pressure on the archwire, passive brackets don’t press on the archwire.
Pros & Cons – Self-ligating braces are now becoming popular for people looking for different types of braces. Since elastic bands are not involved, you need not visit the dentist as often. Since there are no ligatures to trap food particles, these types of braces are easier to clean. The bracket design restricts treatment options, with complex problems costing more than metal braces.
Lingual braces are among the least common types of braces for teeth. They have the same components as any traditional metal braces, i.e., brackets and archwires, but are attached to the back of the teeth. The process begins with the dentist taking an impression of the teeth to create customized brackets cemented to the back of the teeth. They work on the same principle as conventional metal brackets and take around 1- 3 years, depending on the severity of the patient’s problems.
Pros and Cons – They’re perfect for adults and image-conscious teenagers who aren’t comfortable with unsightly metal braces. They’re also good for people who play wind instruments or engage in contact sports. But proper hygiene is very important for lingual braces as food stuck between the brackets could cause tooth decay. Also, they’re expensive when compared to conventional braces.
These are the latest types of braces for teeth and the most expensive as well. Unlike traditional metal braces using brackets and archwires, aligners are customized trays made using transparent plastic. They are ideal for candidates who have worn braces in the past and only need a touch-up. Aligners are suited for moderate oral problems like misaligned teeth or overbite. They are not suitable for complex treatments or periodontal problems involving jaw alignment. Every tray is customized to match the patient’s teeth and must be replaced every two weeks.
Pros & Cons – Clear aligners are removable and don’t restrict the client’s diet or regular lifestyle. You can remove the trays while brushing or eating and then brush your teeth before placing the aligners back in place. Clear aligners can be expensive and require strict disciple – you must wear them at all times, almost 22 hours.
To learn more about the different types of braces for teeth, and to understand what’s right for you, visit us at the Richardsons Hospital.