Most people don’t have perfectly straight teeth. Improper alignment can result from a variety of conditions including gaps, injury, or crowding. Thanks to modern innovations, patients with these problems have more teeth straightening options in Farmington Hills, MI than ever before. The most common options are explored below.
Traditional Metal Braces
Traditional metal braces are what most people think of and recognize as orthodontic braces. They’ve been around since the early 1800s and are still the most commonly used. Traditional braces tend to be the most cost-effective method to straighten teeth.
These consist of a stainless-steel bracket attached to the front of each tooth with a metal wire connecting them. A small elastic band wraps around each bracket to hold the wire in place.
Brackets are available in a variety of metals to accommodate patients with allergies. Titanium, ceramic, and gold-plated stainless steel are a few of those options.
Lingual braces are similar to traditional braces in that they’re constructed of metal brackets, a wire, and elastic bands. The difference is where on the tooth the bracket is affixed. Brackets of this style are bonded to the back of the teeth.
They work in the same way as traditional braces but are invisible to anyone looking at the patient such as when talking or smiling. Because lingual braces are located closer to the tongue, though, they can take more time to get used to and interfere more with speech and eating.
Lingual braces tend to be more expensive than traditional braces because of extra customization required to fit the brackets to the individual curves of the teeth.
Clear Plastic Aligners
Clear plastic aligners are more commonly referred to by their brand name, such as Invisalign or ClearCorrect. Aligners are generally used for mild cases of crowding or gaps.
Plastic aligners are solid pieces of equipment created from plaster molds of the patient’s teeth or using computerized 3-D imaging software. Patients are provided with several aligners that will be worn as their treatment progresses. Each aligner is usually worn for two weeks, and the total treatment time is just over a year.
Like other options, the aligners apply gentle pressure to the teeth to induce their movement but are easily removable. They’re more noticeable than lingual braces but being able to remove them makes it easy to brush, floss, and eat.
Accelerated orthodontics is a new system of treatments used in conjunction with traditional braces that speed up the straightening process. A couple of different techniques exist, but they each work by promoting bone growth so that the teeth move more easily within the jaw.
If you’re interested in any of these teeth straightening options, then contact your local dentist or orthodontist for an in-depth consultation. He or she will guide you towards the technique that best fits your lifestyle, pocketbook, and condition.