Tag Archives: Metal braces

Benefits of Metal Braces

Pros of metal braces (brackets and wires)

You’ll notice that most orthodontists prefer and recommend metal braces over clear ones. This is because metal braces give dentists a lot more maneuverability and versatility over shifting your teeth. It’s much easier and quicker to establish a perfect bite when using brackets and wires than it is with clear trays. Here are some of the advantages of wearing metal brackets and braces over clear ones:

Metal braces can not be removed

Wait, but isn’t this supposed to be a disadvantage? No, not if you’re a teenager who doesn’t like to follow instructions! Removable clear braces require heavy compliance and unfortunately most teenagers don’t follow through. This is the main reason why metal braces are still preferred for youngsters. Trust us, you can’t expect your teenager child to wear his or her clear braces 22+ hours a day if they’re not worrying about paying for it themselves!

Brackets and wires are more effective and efficient

Traditional metal braces are still the king when it comes to excessive teeth movement. You can fix just about any bite discrepancy with metal braces. They give your dentist more control over the movements and yield much faster results. They work for most cases where clear braces fails to produce satisfactory results, such as:

  • Moderate to severe overbites and underbites
  • Fixing overbites resulting from thumb-sucking or tongue-thrusting
  • Fixing posterior crossbites
  • Forcefully pulling out impacted teeth (trapped)

Only very simple and minor teeth movements qualify for clear braces. In fact, clear braces really only work well when closing minor gaps in between your teeth or fixing minor relapses. For everything else you must resort back to metal braces. Having more control and yielding better outcomes is often worth the metal look and inconvenience associated with wearing brackets and bands.

Clear braces cost much more than metal ones do

Clear braces trays are a patented design. This means that they’re made by only a select few manufacturers which typically charge between $500 to $1,500 per case. Obviously, this will be reflected as an additional expense onto your bill. So generally speaking, clear braces cost $2,000 to $3,000 more than metal braces do.

Keep in mind that most of the difference in price doesn’t go to your dentist or orthodontist but rather the tray manufacturer. Thus don’t expect that you will be able to bargain too much on the price here!

On the other hand, metal bracket and wire braces have minimal overhead for your dentist or orthodontist. Cost of bands and brackets are negligible, which is why metal braces cost so much less than clear braces do. Metal braces are almost always the more affordable treatment option, and typically cost a few bucks thousand less than clear braces.

NEXT >> Deciding between clear or metal braces

Pros of clear braces (Invisalign or ClearCorrect)

When to Get Braces: How to Decide

How to Decide?

Answer the following questions:

  1. Are your teeth only slightly crooked?
  2. Is your crooked teeth only the result of your teeth being misaligned and NOT a skeletal issues?
  3. Do you have pretty healthy gums? That is you don’t suffer from gum disease or only have early stage which is under control.
  4. Do you brush and floss regularly?
  5. Do you go to your dentist for your two checkup and cleaning regularly?
  6. Do you still have most of your teeth? Maybe just one or two missing at most.
  7. Do you NOT have several dental implants or dental bridges in your mouth?
  8. Is the only thing bothering you about your teeth the fact that they are slightly crooked? (“no” means you want to change the shape or color of the teeth as well as)

If you answered “yes” to most of the above questions then you can get braces no matter your age. The reason most adults don’t qualify for braces is they either have gum disease so shifting looser teeth may be too risky or they have a lot of existing dental work that makes getting braces a challenge. If you are an adult with healthy gums and not a lot of complicated dental work you should be fine getting braces regardless of your age.

If you  answered “no” to most of the above questions then maybe you should consider options other than braces to straighten your teeth. Cosmetic dentistry can fix your teeth without having you wear braces for so many years. Talk to your dentist to see if placing veneers might give you the results you want.

Final Thought

Taking advantage of soft and flexible bones to move teeth easier is the main reason you want to get braces done when you are younger. The best age to do this is when all the adult teeth have came out at around 11 to 13 years old. But age is not a restriction on receiving braces. In the absence of advanced gum disease or heavy existing dental restoratives you can get braces done at any age. It just might take a little bit longer.

helpful hint – If you are planning on having extensive cosmetic work the cosmetic work can address minor orthodontic needs and mask them. This applies to those who are planning on getting extensive amounts of cosmetic dental work particularly veneers on their front teeth. You may want to both move your teeth as well as get them looking nice and youthful at the same time. You might think that you will require braces treatment followed by cosmetic work. And that is true if your teeth are very crooked. But for the minor cases, such as those with only slight shiftings and minor gaps, the veneers may be able to both cover the teeth and correct your bite imperfections all at the same time. Talk to a cosmetic dentist or a prosthodontist to see if placing veneers on your teeth can address both issues at once.

NEXT >> When to Get Braces: As a Child or Teenager

When to Get Braces: As an Adult

When to Get Braces: As a Child or Teenager

You have been dreaming of straighter teeth for a while now. You finally have the time and resources to get the braces you’ve been wanting so bad. But it dawns on you that maybe you are just too old to be wearing braces. After all most people who have braces seem to be teenagers and seldom do you run into a grown-up with braces on their teeth. Is it really better to have braces on earlier in life? Or could you still get receive them as a grown up without any problems?

Pros of Wearing Braces as a Child or Teenager

1. It is easier to move teeth in teenagers since the bones are softer. Children and teenagers have softer and more flexible bones since they are still growing and their skeletal growth palates haven’t fused yet. This means the teeth will move easier and quicker within the upper and lower jaws. Moving teeth is always easier on children and teenagers and gets more difficult on adults. Adults have stiffer bone and moving their teeth is more challenging which may limit your orthodontist treatment to an extent.

2. It is more socially acceptable to wear metal braces as a teenager. When you are in high-school or junior-high many of your classmates have braces on just like you do. Wearing braces is cool and easier to deal with at this age. As an adult you might not want to show the brackets and wires on your teeth.

  • As an adult you may be a candidate for clear-braces which disguises better and is also easier to wear. Many adults opt to go for the clear-braces over the traditional metal ones based on how discreet they look.
  • This is the other reason you don’t see as many adults with braces because many that have them are often wearing the clear-braces which are far less noticeable.

3. There are more existing dental work on adults which can complicate treatment. Children and teenagers may have a few fillings on their teeth or at most a crown or two here or there. Minor amount of existing dental work doesn’t really interfere with putting braces on. But as you age you may end up with more extensive dental work like crowns and implants on your broken and missing teeth. Some of these restorations will interfere with receiving braces.

  • If you have a crown on a tooth it can be difficult to move it or you may require a new crown once you are done with your braces.
  • A fixed dental restoration to replace a missing tooth, such as a bridge or a dental implant can be very challenging to deal with and having them may exclude you from being able to receive braces altogether.
  • If you have extensive dental treatment already but still insist on straightening your teeth you may have to look into cosmetic dentistry as an alternative. A cosmetic dentist may be able to place veneers to cover your teeth and correct the smaller gaps and discrepancies to help both straighten your teeth and make them white and beautiful at the same time. Not everyone qualifies for veneers and not every dentist can do them. So do some research to find a qualified cosmetic dentist or prosthodontist to see if you can place veneers to correct your bite and get a nicer and more beautiful smile all at once.

NEXT >> When to Get Braces: As an Adult

When to Get Braces: How to Decide