What Are Metal Braces?
As a proven way to straighten the smile and align teeth, traditional metal braces have been used for many decades to help patients enjoy improved jaw function and appearance. Modern braces, however, are lighter, smaller, and more comfortable than those that patients wore in the past. Traditional braces use a system of brackets, wires, and bands to apply gentle force to the teeth and accomplish orthodontic movement into proper positioning in the jaw. While advancements in technology have brought about a wide range of other solutions, traditional braces still offer an excellent approach to helping children, teens, and adults enjoy straight and comfortable smiles.
Choosing Made Ya Smile Dental for your family's orthodontic treatment can make the process highly convenient and even more affordable. Our skilled team uses traditional metal braces to correct a range of orthodontic and bite issues, including tooth and jaw misalignment, spacing, overcrowding, and crooked teeth. From colorful elastic ties to phased orthodontic care, your family's orthodontic experience can truly be personalized. Plus, as your general dental practice, we already know a lot about your smile and can offer a compressive approach to care before, during, and well after your treatment with braces. To learn if you or your family member are a candidate for traditional metal braces, schedule a consultation with general dentist Dr. Peter Nishino in our Friendswood, TX dental center.
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Who Is a Candidate for Traditional Metal Braces?
Wearing traditional metal braces is now more affordable and comfortable than ever. Modern solutions feature brackets and other hardware that is smaller and lighter yet still deliver the best possible outcomes for your smile. Braces gently guide your teeth over a period of time until they reach the desired position in your jaw. While orthodontic treatment is often performed on children and teens, when teeth are easier to move, many adults are still turning to braces to enhance their appearance and improve their oral function, comfort, and speaking abilities. Made Ya Smile Dental uses the highest-grade metal wires, brackets, and bands to strategically create your own beautiful, healthy, and straight smile. Our team can help you determine the best treatment approach for your family's needs, whether this involves a short time in braces or phased orthodontic care.
Traditional metal braces may be ideal for correcting:
• Gapped teeth
• Crooked or rotated teeth
• Tipped or protruding teeth
• Crossbite and openbite
• Underbite and overbite
How Are Braces Applied?
As a comprehensive dental practice, Made Ya Smile Dental uses the latest in technology to plan for and perform the procedures your family needs for a healthy, happy smile. Advanced 3D cone beam scans and digital x-rays will be used to give Dr. Nishino and our team a clear understanding of how your teeth and jaws fit together and to plan for the best approach to strengthening your smile. Impressions for your teeth will also be taken so that our team can study your mouth and determine your treatment needs.
When you are ready to begin orthodontic treatment, your brackets will be bonded to your teeth and an archwire will be threaded through the brackets and held in place by elastic ties. You will have the option to choose your color choice for your ties and can show offer your school spirit or personality by selecting one or more colors. Receiving braces is typically a simple and easy visit. Our team will let you know how often you need to return to have your wires changed, but appointments are usually scheduled on a monthly basis.
What Can I Expect During the Braces Treatment Process?
Most patients do experience minor discomfort in the teeth or jaw for the first few days after having their archwires changed. Nonprescription medications and eating a diet of soft foods can provide relief in this short time period. An important part of wearing braces is keeping them clean and free of plaque and food accumulation. The nature of brackets and wires provides numerous places where bacteria can hide and cause damage to the teeth and gums. Our Friendswood, TX team will show you the proper way to brush and floss around your braces and may recommend adjunctive tools to use at home for helping improve your home-care results. Dr. Nishino recommends that patients who wear braces have their teeth cleaned at least twice a year but may suggest more frequently, depending on their individual needs.
The time spent wearing braces over the course of orthodontic treatment may last from 1 – 3 years but does vary among patients. Our team will give you a general idea of how long your orthodontic treatment may last. Once your teeth reach their final destination, your brackets and wires will be removed and a retainer will be made. To help maintain your results, it is very important to wear your retainer as recommended, which will be all the time at first. The retention phase of care helps keep your teeth in place while the rest of your jaw stabilizes. Maintaining routine dental visits throughout the entire process can help keep your teeth and gums in top shape and assist you in protecting the investment you are making in your smile.
When wearing traditional braces, minor emergencies are common. You may find over the course of your treatment that brackets come off or wires come loose. To lessen the risk, we do encourage you to avoid eating sticky or hard foods or chewing on ice. We will work to get you in as quickly as possible when this occurs, but there are a few things you can do at home to minimize any discomfort until you can get in to see our Made Ya Smile Dental team. Here is what to do if you experience the following minor orthodontic emergencies:
• Sharp or Broken Wire: Wires may commonly break and poke you in the gums, lips, or cheeks. Try covering the sharp or broken end with orthodontic wax or sugar-free gum. You can also clip the broken wire just behind the tooth to which it is attached with wire cutters or nail clippers that have been cleaned with rubbing alcohol.
• Tooth or Jaw Tenderness: Most patients notice tenderness in the teeth or jaw for the first few days after having braces placed or their wires changed. Eating soft foods and taking anti-inflammatory medications can relieve soreness until the discomfort goes away. Warm saltwater rinses can also help reduce any gum inflammation.
• Loose Bracket or Band: A loose bracket or band that is still attached to the archwire can simply be left in place until you arrive at our office. Please bring any pieces of hardware that come completely unattached with you to your next visit. Orthodontic wax or sugarless gum can be used to cover any part of your braces that are irritating your soft tissues.
• Loose Wire: If you can, try to gently reposition a loose wire back into its proper place with a Q-tip, tweezers, or pencil eraser. When this cannot be accomplished, you can use nail clippers or wire cutters (disinfected with rubbing alcohol) to cut the wire just beyond the tooth to which it is attached. Covering any uncomfortable part of the wire with sugar-free gum or orthodontic wax may also provide some relief until you can have it repaired by our team.
• Loose Appliance: Orthodontic appliances, such as palatal expanders and space patients, should be reattached as early as possible if they happen to come loose. Orthodontic wax can be used to keep it in place until you can get in to have it repaired.
* Please seek emergency medical care if a serious injury occurs to the mouth or face.
Are Traditional Braces Covered by Insurance?
Made Ya Smile Dental works with most major PPO dental insurance plans and will learn more about your plan to help you maximize your benefits. We will let you know of any personal costs upfront and work with you to find a solution to help your family get the care needed for a healthy smile while fitting within your budget. To help make orthodontic care more accessible, we offer several easy payment solutions and partner with CareCredit® to bring low-cost financing plans to Friendswood, TX patients.
Traditional Braces FAQ
How long will I have to wear braces?
Generally speaking, most of our patients have had braces on their teeth for about 1 – 2 years. The duration of your orthodontic treatment will vary on your unique needs, however. We always aim to ensure your braces treatment is as quick as can be.
What foods should I avoid when wearing braces?
There are limitations when it comes to eating with braces. We'll go over in detail what you shouldn't eat with braces; however, you should generally try to avoid hard and sticky foods, including:
- Hard candy
Do traditional braces work the same as clear teeth aligners?
Dental braces and clear aligners, such as Invisalign® clear aligners, both work by putting pressure on your teeth in order to guide them into position. You may have the option to have traditional metal braces or clear aligners; if this is the case, we'll help you understand the pros and cons of both so you can decide which will help you reach your oral goals best.
Traditional Orthodontic Care
A rite of passage for many individuals, traditional metal braces are an effective way to gain a straight, functional smile for patients of all ages. Modern braces are now smaller, lighter, more comfortable, and more affordable than ever and may be an important part of your family's path to dental wellness. Learn more about your options for correcting orthodontic issues, like bite misaligned, crooked teeth, and crowding, by scheduling a visit with Dr. Nishino. He and our team are proud to offer comprehensive solutions Friendswood, TX patients need to enjoy exceptional oral health results. Get in touch with Made Ya Smile Dental and schedule your consultation today.