Types of braces

In the world of orthodontics, malocclusion is a term that describes the misalignment of teeth. People who want to get straight teeth and attractive smiles have several options. Self-ligating and ceramic braces are suitable for cases involving moderate to severe forms of crowing and bad bites. Clear aligners are effective at correcting mild forms of malocclusion such as gaps between teeth. Learning about all of the different types of braces will help you to make the best decision regarding which one is right for you.

Self-ligating braces

Self-ligating braces are made from the same materials as traditional braces. However, self-ligating braces do not require the use of elastics, meaning fewer appointments and less friction being placed on the tooth. Self-ligating braces come with traditional metal, ceramic, or clear brackets. They are the same size as metal braces, but use a specialized clip in place of elastics to help the archwire guide teeth into place. The clip helps reduce the amount of pressure being placed on the tooth, and requires fewer adjustments because there are no elastics to replace.

Clear (ceramic) 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

Clear aligners, like Invisalign®, 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.

Book a free consultation to learn more

Make an appointment at Petty & Bielik Orthodontics in Oak Lawn to learn more about all of the different types of braces. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation and get started on the journey to a beautiful, healthy smile!