What are self-ligating braces?

Do you want a better smile? Maybe you are dealing with misaligned teeth that make you hide your smile. If you are looking for braces in Oak Lawn, Petty & Bielik Orthodontics has some of the best solutions in the Oak Lawn area. We offer self-ligating braces and invisible solutions that will give you straighter teeth with fewer appointments. There are many reasons why more patients choose self-ligating solutions over traditional braces.

What are self-ligating braces?

Self-ligating braces use a small clip to guide the archwire rather than the elastic bands used in traditional braces. A common misconception is that the bracket creates tension in the teeth. Rather, the wire creates tension that gently moves the teeth into the correct placement. With self-ligating solutions, the brackets have low friction and require little maintenance.

The brackets of the braces come in passive and active forms and are available from a variety of brands. They can also be made from different materials. There are less visible and even transparent options. Self-ligating solutions are popular because they offer ease and comfort compared to traditional braces.

Who can wear self-ligating braces?

Self-ligating braces are a common choice among adults due to their reduced size. The braces can be a good option over traditional braces due to the greater comfort they offer and easier treatment for most patients. There are several types of braces, but self-ligating types are the best choice for many patients.

Advantages of self-ligating braces over other braces

Traditional braces require elastic bands to hold the wires in place, which can be lost and require frequent maintenance. Braces with self-ligating brackets do not have the same risk of loss because they don’t use elastic bands.

You will also enjoy fewer appointments while wearing the braces and a greater amount of comfort because the braces require less tension. The reduced tension causes less friction while your teeth move gently into alignment. Choosing the self-ligating type of braces makes for a more pleasant experience and a shorter amount of time wearing the braces.

When should I get braces?

It is recommended that everyone visit the orthodontist around the age of seven, but there is no age restriction for undergoing orthodontic treatment. As many as 20% of patients visit the orthodontist after the age of 21. We recommend treatment for children and adults, but many adults and teens prefer a more discreet solution than children. Self-ligating or invisible braces are common treatments for adults and teens.

Do self-ligating braces need tightening?

The braces still require tightening to gently guide the teeth into alignment, but patients will enjoy greater freedom of movement and less friction with this choice. Traditional braces require a greater number of appointments due to the elastic bands. Those with self-ligating style braces should still visit the office for tightening and progress updates based on their orthodontist’s recommendation.

Are self-ligating braces comfortable?

These braces tend to be more comfortable than other types of braces due to the reduced friction. Braces using elastic bands to hold the wire tend to have less freedom of movement and cause more friction. Self-ligating brackets offer greater freedom of movement, resulting in faster and more comfortable treatment. Patients will also enjoy fewer visits for maintenance

Will I need to change my lifestyle for braces?

Most patients with braces will need to make minimal changes to their lifestyle. Patients will have to visit the orthodontist for check-ups on their progress. Keeping your teeth and gums clean should also be prioritized for orthodontic patients, to prevent infection.

One great benefit for patients with self-ligating solutions is that they tend to have a lower risk of bacterial infection. Brushing three times per day, flossing, and using a fluoride mouthwash may be recommended for those wearing braces.

Patients should avoid sugar which can increase bacteria and plaque. Patients should avoid hard or chewy foods such as taffy, nuts, and bagels. If you participate in a contact sport, it is recommended that you wear a mouth guard to protect the braces. Those who play instruments or participate in sports will not need to make significant changes.

What is the difference between passive and active brackets?

Passive brackets are commonly used during the first stages of treatment. These brackets produce gentle movement over time and allow a great range of movement. Active brackets produce significant results with greater pressure and movement. The archwire used in these brackets is thicker and used to move the teeth into place quickly. Both types of brackets can be used in self-ligating orthodontics based on a specialist’s recommendation.

Book a free consultation

If you have teeth that could be straighter, book a free consultation at Petty & Bielik Orthodontics in Oak Lawn, IL. We offer a variety of treatments that are easy to use and take less time to treat your teeth than traditional options. Find out if self-ligating orthodontics is the right choice for you today.