Braces are devices used in orthodontics to help reposition the teeth to improve function and aesthetics. Malocclusions or misalignment of the teeth between the arches of the jaw when it is closed, crooked teeth and other types of misaligned bites and flaws of the teeth and jaw are good candidates for braces. Braces can be worn to improve your look and/or to improve the structure and function of your mouth.
Because the teeth can move at any age, braces are not specifically for younger people. Even if you had braces in the past you can still benefit from getting them again. Getting braces as an adult has never been more affordable, they are less visible, and you can still improve your oral and general health by getting them. Not only will you achieve a better smile it can help you both socially and professionally.
Traditional wire braces are the most common type of dental brace. These braces consist of orthodontic bands usually attached to the molars at each end of the arch. These orthodontic bands provide the support for the archwire. Brackets are placed on the front of the tooth to hold the archwire. The archwire is then secured to the bracket by elastic or wire ties and tightened to apply pressure to the entire arch and is usually adjusted about once a month.
Traditional wire braces work by applying a continuous force to the teeth over a long period of time moving them in a specific direction. Initially, the teeth are loosened because the tissue supporting the tooth is being stretched from the pressure of the brace. Occurring at the same time the bone that is holding the tooth begins to break down. This allows the tooth to shift its position and reduce the forces acting on it. When the tooth arrives at its final position the tissue in the bone begins to repair itself. This rebuilds the supporting structure of bone and tissue in the jaw, to hold the tooth firmly in place.
Ceramic braces are much like the traditional wire alternative, however, the main difference between ceramic and traditional wire braces is that the ceramic ones are made from a clear transparent ceramic material. This makes the brace less visible and a more popular option among adults for aesthetic purposes.
The next option is removable aligners such as Invisalign. Invisalign has some distinct advantages over traditional wire braces. First, they are custom-made and removable much like custom-made trays used for teeth whitening. Another added benefit is that they’re virtually unnoticeable as they’re constructed of a clear thermoplastic. Unlike traditional wire braces that stretched the tissue and break down the bone, Invisalign turns, tilts, and twists the tooth using a series of custom-molded trays. Each consecutive tray progresses the tooth into a correct alignment until your teeth are aligned in its final position.
Whether you have traditional wire braces or Invisalign, proper oral hygiene is important. The obvious issues with traditional wire braces or apparent due to the obstructive nature of the braces. However, Invisalign is required to be worn at least 20 hours a day. If your teeth or your Invisalign trays are not properly cleaned you will still experience some of the issues that would occur with traditional wire braces such as tooth decay and periodontal disease. To read more on clear removable aligners, please click through to our Invisalign page.
At Sapphire Dentistry, we can consult with you on the best and most appropriate type of braces to suit your needs. Contact us or book online and one of our experienced dentists can guide you in the right direction to help you achieve a lifetime of beautiful smiles.