The classic choice keeps getting better
Traditional metal braces are one of the most commonly-chosen braces for adults, young adults, and children who need to straighten their smile. In years past, metal braces were regarded with angst and fear, but that’s no longer the case. Modern metal braces are more comfortable today than ever before, with sleeker profiles, smaller fittings, and more customizations.
If you’re looking to correct overcrowded teeth, uneven spacing, wide gaps between teeth, a misaligned bite, or jaw problems, then metal braces are a great choice. How does it work? A specially-trained orthodontist will place metal brackets on your teeth with an adhesive and then connect them with a wire, which is periodically tightened to pull the teeth into alignment. This slow, steady pressure is key to lasting results and a healthy smile.
Five things to know about metal braces
When it comes to lower cost and higher effectiveness, metal braces remain one of the most popular choices (especially in children, whose teeth are constantly growing and moving), but there are a few things to consider before choosing metal braces to correct your smile:
- Metal braces are most often made of stainless steel or titanium alloys, so they’re safe to use inside the mouth for a long duration of time without corroding or losing strength. Because metal braces are so durable, they are most effective in correcting extreme overcrowding or alignment issues.
- Fitting braces to your teeth isn’t “one and done.” The process to adjust the alignment of your smile is incremental and takes time. Every two or three weeks, you’ll have an appointment with the orthodontist to tighten and reset your fittings. The entire process could last a year or more.
- You can customize your metal braces and show your personality by choosing different colors of elastic bands. Select a subdued hue, a wild color, or mix and match to rep your alma mater or favorite sports team.
- You won’t be able to eat certain foods when you have metal braces, including chewy foods like caramels and gum, or hard candies. Rather than biting down directly onto fruits and vegetables, it’s recommended these are first cut into small pieces.
- With metal braces, it’s even more important to brush and floss correctly and regularly. This will help limit any tooth discoloration or staining while also preventing cavities. It takes a bit of practice to learn to brush effectively when wearing metal braces, but it will get easier in time.
Not sure if metal braces are right for you?
Ask Dr. Tisseront! We are a leading orthodontist in Northern Virginia. We’ll discuss with you the pros and cons of choosing traditional metal braces over other braces and realignment options, including lingual braces, ceramic braces, and Invisalign. No two smiles are ever the same. We want to make sure we find the best treatment for you and your overall orthodontic health.