Braces are usually something people associate with an awkward phase of childhood. But straight smiles are trending no matter your age! According to statistics American Association of Orthodontists, The number of adult patients increased 14% in a 2-year period from 2010 to 2012, to a record high of 1,225,850 patients ages 18 and older. If brightly colored rubber bands with metal brackets are not your style, don’t give up – there is an impressive list of treatment modalities that may be right for you. Your treating clinician will work with you to choose the right course of treatment for your needs and preferences.
Orthodontic technology is quickly evolving, producing differing options to appeal to more patients. Every treatment option is not right for every patient so always consult your orthodontist to get expert advice on how to achieve your desired smile.
Traditional Metal Braces – Silver metal colored brackets and wires are the most noticeable, but they can also be the most affordable. These tend to be a popular choice for children because there is no need to remember to put in a removable aligner and no fears of losing aligners in the trash at school lunch.
Ceramic Braces – Similar in form factor to traditional metal braces, ceramic braces are slightly less noticeable because brackets and wires are a shade of white like your teeth. Ceramic braces tend to be slightly more expensive than traditional metal brackets, but for teens or adults who don’t want to wear aligners they can help boost self-confidence during treatment.
Lingual Braces – Metal brackets and wires attached to the back of the teeth are called lingual braces. They are not noticeable when you smile or talk, but they can be harder to keep clean than when brackets are placed on the front of the teeth. Plus, it can take a while for your mouth and tongue to adjust to the hardware.
Self-ligating braces – Another metal braces option, self-litigating braces have no ligatures (the small rubber bands that go around the brackets). Special brackets are used instead that aid with tooth movement. Benefits of this braces option include less doctor visits, potentially less pain and some people find them easier to clean.
Clear Aligners – Rising in popularity, many adults and teens are gravitating toward clear aligners. Of course, you must be extremely regimented and make sure that you are wearing your trays as prescribed by your doctor. It is also imperative that the trays are well seated to your teeth and attachments to achieve the programmed results. Aligner seaters, like the VPro5 ™ high frequency vibration device used for 5 minutes a day, help ensure that the trays remain well seated throughout treatment.