For most people, a beautiful smile is the most obvious benefit of orthodontics. After your braces come off, you’ll feel more self-confident. During your treatment, we want you to feel as comfortable as possible.
How Orthodontic Treatment Works
Orthodontic appliances can be made of metal, ceramic, or plastic. They may be removable or they may be brackets bonded to the teeth. By placing a constant, gentle force in a carefully controlled direction, braces slowly move teeth to a corrected position. This is a great time to wear braces! Gone are the days when a metal band with a bracket was placed around each tooth. You can choose brackets that are clear or metallic color. You can choose the color of the ties that hold the wire in brackets. Wires are also less noticeable than they used to be and the latest materials move teeth faster with less discomfort to patients.
Types of Braces
Ceramic braces are made of clear materials and are therefore less visible on your teeth than metal braces. For this reason, ceramic braces are used mainly on older teenagers and adult patients who have cosmetic concerns. While they are visually less prominent, they do require more attention to oral hygiene as ceramic braces are larger and are more brittle than their metal counterparts. For these reasons, ceramic braces tend to be used more on
upper front teeth than on lower teeth.
Clear aligners are a series of invisible, removable, and comfortable acrylic trays that straighten your teeth like braces. Not only are the aligners invisible, they are removable, so you can eat and drink what you want while in treatment, plus brushing and flossing are less of a hassle. The aligners are comfortable and have no metal to cause mouth abrasions during treatment.
Lingual braces are hidden behind the teeth and are therefore “invisible” when you smile. We currently use lingual braces on crowded lower teeth.
Duration of Treatment
Treatment time typically ranges from one to three years, depending on the growth of the patient’s mouth and face and the severity of the problem. Patients grow at different rates and will respond variously to orthodontic treatment, so the time to case completion may differ from the original estimate. The patient’s diligent use of any prescribed rubber bands or headgear is an important factor in achieving the most efficient treatment. Interceptive, or early treatment procedures, may take as few as six months.
SPEED Braces have revolutionized orthodontics by eliminating the need for the elastics that traditional braces require to straighten teeth. Instead, SPEED Braces use an energy-storing component called a ‘Spring Clip’ to straighten teeth. The SPEED Spring Clip works like a computer chip inside your braces. The Spring Clip is ‘programmed’ by your orthodontist when SPEED Braces are placed on your teeth. The Spring Clip, made of a ‘Super-Elastic’ space age material, then follows the programmed instructions by applying a light continuous force to gently move teeth to their correct position.
Only SPEED Braces contain a ‘Super-Elastic’ Spring Clip.
The result is greater comfort, and potentially fewer appointments and more ‘SPEEDy’ treatment. SPEED Braces are small; typically 1/3 smaller than traditional braces, and they look great! SPEED’s small footprint results in less food trapping, so good oral hygiene is easier to maintain throughout your treatment.