Having perfectly aligned teeth is a blessing. Not everyone is blessed with picture-perfect pearly whites that don’t need teeth straightening. Nearly 4 million Americans wish that they had perfect teeth. Crooked, gapped, and misaligned teeth have been a source of embarrassment for most people.
But thank heavens, there are various teeth straightening options ranging from metal braces to Invisalign®. Even though most patients associate orthodontic treatments with aesthetics, it is also worth noting that your oral health will benefit from these treatments.
Nonetheless, the variety of teeth straightening options can be good and bad. On the one hand, you will be spoiled for choice, meaning that you will get the treatment that suits you. On the other hand, it will be challenging trying to find the best option for you.
Without further ado, let’s check out the various teeth straightening options:
Traditional Metal Braces
Conventional metal braces also referred to as traditional metal braces, have come a long way since their conception. They have been the orthodontic giant for decades since there were no other teeth straightening options.
But they have evolved so much even though they have maintained their original concept. They are crafted from high-grade stainless steel and are lighter in weight than their predecessors.
Traditional metal braces are made up of metal brackets that are usually attached to the teeth using special cement. Then, they have a thin archwire that connects the brackets. The brackets and the archwires are designed to move teeth by applying pressure on them.
The braces usually have tiny elastics known as ligatures or o-rings that tighten the braces. These are the ones our dentist adjusts during every visit.
Traditional metal braces are very effective when correcting moderate to severe orthodontic issues such as gapped teeth, a diastema, overbites, underbite, cross bite, crooked teeth, etc.
Even though they do so much, they are less expensive compared to the other options. So, if you wish to save a buck, you can go for metal braces.
But you have to remember that they are not the top choice when it comes to aesthetics.
Ceramic braces are no different from traditional braces. They also have brackets and bands, but the main difference is that the brackets are made of ceramic. These braces could sometimes have clear or tooth-colored brackets instead of metallic or gray brackets and wires.
For most people who don’t fancy how metallic braces look and are looking for a less noticeable option, then ceramic braces will be a good alternative. Ceramic braces are also available in almost any color imaginable. Ceramic braces will blow your mind if you want to add color to your smile.
But, you will part with some more money to get them and the elastic ties that hold the archwire stain easily and might need replacement.
Lingual braces are slightly different from other braces since they are placed against the teeth’s inner surfaces. They are versatile and can be used depending on your specific needs. For instance, you can use them to straighten only your front six teeth.
They are also excellent if you value discretion since they cannot be seen when you open your mouth.
Self-ligating braces are slightly different from traditional braces. Traditional braces have elastics or o-rings that attach the archwire to the brackets. However, in self-ligating braces, there are no elastics or o-rings. These braces use a tiny spring-loaded door to attach the archwire to the bracket.
These braces are more comfortable since they lack o-rings or ligatures. They are also easier to clean because they don’t have latex, which traps food. Even though they are aesthetically more pleasing than traditional braces, the metal wire is still visible. Moreover, you will need to part with more money to get them.
Clear aligners are in a class of their own since they are extremely different from metal braces. Clear aligners are still designed to straighten teeth, but they achieve this goal differently. Braces have brackets, arch wires, and ligatures to aid them in moving teeth. However, clear aligners are trays made of plastic or resin that resemble mouth guards.
The widely used clear aligner is Invisalign®. These aligners are known for their aesthetics and discretion. When you wear them, they are virtually invisible, a trait that is appealing to adults.
Invisalign is equally as good as metal braces. The only thing is that they are not as effective as metal braces when dealing with severe orthodontic issues.