When you want straight, perfectly aligned teeth, wearing braces is the first solution that comes to mind. Dentists and orthodontists also recommend this treatment, so it is highly likely that your dental specialist will suggest this option.

But even if dental braces are the go-to solutions for fixing malocclusions, overbites and underbites, and crooked, gapped, and crowded teeth, you can’t have one fitted immediately on your next visit to your dentist. There is one important decision you have to make regarding this orthodontic treatment: deciding which type to get.

Types of Dental Braces

If your dentist recommends getting dental braces in Fort Lauderdale to treat your orthodontic problem, you have to choose among different types. These are:

  1. Metal braces

Although this type is also known as traditional braces, at present, there is nothing old-fashioned about them. Modern metal braces are lighter in weight and structure compared to the ones used before.

Metal braces are now made from high-grade stainless steel. They are equipped with metal brackets that are attached to each tooth using a special type of cement.

A thin archwire links the brackets to each other, which then applies pressure on the teeth, causing them to move into their proper position.

O-rings or ligatures, which are tiny elastic bands, connect the archwires to the brackets. The dentist or orthodontist will change these bands each time he or she tightens the braces.

Although they are not cheap, metal braces are typically still the most affordable teeth alignment treatment. Moreover, they can fix most misalignment problems in a short amount of time.

You can also choose among different colors of elastic bands to show off your personality and flash a more vibrant smile. 

2. Self-ligating braces

Also known as Damon braces, this type is similar to metal braces in terms of design and function. They can also fix both simple and complex orthodontic problems. However, the main difference is that self-ligating braces do not use elastics.

Self-ligating braces use special clips to align the teeth and maintain alignment. Because of this, the appliance creates less friction, pain, and discomfort. They also make it easier for you to brush your teeth and keep them clean.

Additionally, the special clips do not require frequent adjustment and replacement. As such, this means fewer check-ups and visits to your dentist.

3. Ceramic braces

Ceramic braces are similar to traditional braces as well since they sit on the front of the teeth. However, they are made of ceramic, allowing them to blend with the natural color of your pearly whites.

The wires and brackets can also be designed to mimic the color of the ceramic and your natural teeth to make them less noticeable.

Like traditional braces, ceramic braces also work effectively to repair misalignments within a reasonable period of time.

Ceramic braces are usually more expensive than metal ones and, therefore, are usually not recommended for kids.

4. Lingual braces

If you don’t want to have straighter teeth but feel uncomfortable about wearing a noticeable orthodontic appliance, you have two options to choose from. The first one is lingual braces.

Lingual braces are custom-made orthodontic appliances attached to the back surfaces of the tongue (lingual) side of the teeth. Because of this, they are virtually invisible.

But even if lingual braces are unnoticeable, they function like traditional and ceramic braces since they have brackets and wires that move the teeth. They are also effective and work fast to correct the alignment issue.

Unfortunately, lingual braces can’t fix all types of orthodontic issues, particularly the more complex ones. As such, they are not recommended for all patients.

2. Invisalign

The second option for invisible braces is Invisalign, which is currently the most popular choice for clear aligners.

Invisalign aligns teeth without brackets, bands, or wires. It uses plastic trays that are replaced every two weeks or so following a schedule that works to guide the misaligned teeth into their correct position.

Since the aligners do not come with any wires, they do not cause any pain or discomfort. Moreover, they are removable; you can take them out from your mouth when eating, drinking, speaking in public, or going about your daily oral hygiene habits.

However, to get the most from the treatment, you have to make sure you wear the aligners at least 22 hours every day. Moreover, you have to change the trays based on the schedule worked out by your dentist or orthodontist.

Tips for Choosing the Best Dental Braces for You

Knowing the different types of braces can help you decide the right orthodontic treatment to get. Following these tips can help you narrow down your choices wisely and effectively as well.

A. Listen to your dentist or orthodontist’s advice.

Although your preferences and comfort are important, having your dental problem fixed should be your priority. As such, you will do well to heed your dental specialist’s recommendation regarding which type of braces to get.

Your dental expert will evaluate your teeth thoroughly to know which type of dental braces can best address your orthodontic issue.  If the problem is a bit serious, such as a severe malocclusion or overbite, you can expect that Invisalign won’t be recommended to you.

Keep in mind that your dental specialist’s right primary concern is to fix your smile. If metal or ceramic braces would be the most effective, he or she will recommend these treatment options.

B. Consider your lifestyle.

The second factor that you should consider when selecting your dental braces is your lifestyle.

If you feel uncomfortable wearing braces because of the nature of your work, check with your specialist if Invisalign is a good fit for you. Since the aligners are removable, you can take them off when making a presentation or joining an important meeting.

If you don’t want your diet to be affected by your orthodontic appliance, removable aligners are still the best options since you can remove them before eating.

C. Find out how long you need to wear your braces.

The length of orthodontic treatment is another factor you have to think about as well. If your teeth alignment problem is not severe, you can choose a solution that can fix it in the shortest time possible.

Invisible aligners can correct teeth misalignments within 12 to 24 months as long as the treatment plan is followed correctly.

Wearing metal and ceramic braces, on the other hand, can take longer. These treatments often last between 18 and 36 months.

D. Consider your budget.

Finally, orthodontic treatments can be costly. As such, you have to choose a solution that you can afford.

As already mentioned, metal braces are the most affordable orthodontic solution. Conversely, invisible braces are usually the most expensive.

To have straighter, perfectly aligned teeth, go with the type of dental brace that can fix your orthodontic issue that you can afford.

Like getting veneers in Fort Lauderdale, finding the right dentist is crucial in receiving an orthodontic solution that will help you have perfectly aligned teeth. Take the time to look for a dental specialist you can trust to help you have a healthier, more beautiful smile.