If there’s one thing most, if not all dental patients have in common, it’s that we’ve never once met someone who was genuinely happy to get braces. Luckily, however, we here at Sawrie Orthodontics make sure you have nothing to fear when it comes to straightening your teeth.
Today, we’ll be answering some of the most frequently asked questions about standard braces as well as stating some of their benefits. If you or a loved one believe you may need braces and have any questions not covered here, please give us a call today at (423) 624-8217.
What Are Traditional Braces?
Also known as silver braces, these are the most common type. Constructed from high-grade stainless steel, they are designed to correct your teeth into proper alignment using a framework of metal straightening wires and brackets. Despite their nickname “silver”, patients do generally have the option to make their smile more colorful with colored elastics (rubber bands).
Why Should I Get Braces?
The most important reason to get braces is for the benefit of a healthier, straighter, more beautiful smile. Straight teeth are also easier to brush and floss, which lowers risk of decay, periodontal (gum) disease such as gingivitis and premature tooth loss. Lastly, aligning your bite can remedy various structural problems like advanced malocclusion, jaw pain and chewing difficulties, which can cause headaches.
What Is The Best Age To Get Braces?
There is no “perfect age” to receive braces. On average, the optimal age-range is between 10-14, when a child’s head and mouth are still developing and adult teeth are coming in. The chief determining factor is when the permanent teeth erupt, but the exact timeline for this differs to some degree with everybody.
Even for adults, while this is up to personal choice, braces can make a positive difference. More often than you’d think, people wait until adulthood to get braces because they or their families couldn’t afford them when he/she was younger. It might also be because their teeth only just now moved out of alignment. Don’t be afraid to consider it just because you’re over 18, as braces can still provide you decades of improved quality of dental health and, by extension life.
Are Braces Painful?
Braces are generally much better made and less uncomfortable compared to a few years ago. Patients on rare occasions may experience minimal discomfort for the first couple days after treatment, as their teeth, gums, cheeks, and mouth adapt to the introduction of this new device. Braces being removed can cause some discomfort as well, though not pain. Standard braces typically utilize “shape memory” wires now, which gently align your teeth over time.
Are Braces Still As Bad As When I Was A Kid?
Thankfully, no. While most certainly not fun to wear, braces are more advanced, inconspicuous, painless, and effective than ever before. Even the standard metal brackets are no longer as bulky. New models often use heat-activated wires to help reposition your teeth with continuous small amounts of pressure, making the process of adjustment quicker but less uncomfortable.
Orthodontics has also leaped forward with assistance from computers, creating “smart” wires and brackets to further streamline realignment. We also offer several alternative treatments to traditional braces, including self-ligating Damon braces and clear aligner therapy with Invisalign,
How Long Do Braces Take To Apply?
Again, this varies from patient to patient. Normally, treatment takes one & a half to two & a half hours.
How Long Must Braces Be Worn?
This can similarly vary from case to case, based on several factors (rate of maturity, severity of misalignment, patients following instructions and keeping up with appointments, oral hygiene, etc). Generally, children wear braces for 1-3 years.
Remember, if your or a loved one are considering braces and wish to schedule a consultation to discuss which kind may be right for you, call Sawrie Orthodontics today at (423) 624-8217.