Did you know orthodontic treatment for ensuring straight teeth dates back to the ancient Greeks? Now, about four million people in North America younger than age 18 wear braces. More adults are wearing braces now, too.

Whether you’re a child, teen, or adult, there are different types of metal braces you should consider before beginning treatment. Not sure which option suits your needs? Read on to learn more about metal braces today!

Braces Options

Metal braces are also called metallic braces, metal brackets, or traditional braces. When people imagine orthodontic treatment, they often imagine traditional metal braces. These braces involve using metal wires and brackets to move your teeth into a desired location.

Traditional metal braces are created using stainless steel. They can correct alignment issues that are affecting your bite or the appearance of your smile.

The braces will adhere to the surface of your teeth using a special glue. The brackets are connected by an arching wire. The wire will apply pressure to your teeth to guide their movement over time.

During treatment, your braces will use biomechanical principles to apply pressure onto your teeth. Treatment remodels the bone tissue around your teeth. As your teeth shift, the wire will exert force to guide them into place.

The process is gradual and controlled, minimizing damage to your teeth or discomfort. You’ll need to visit your orthodontist regularly during treatment. They’ll ensure the treatment is progressing as planned and make adjustments to the wire as needed.

There are two main types of metal braces. Read on to learn more about conventional and self-ligating orthodontic treatments.

Conventional Metal Braces

Conventional metal braces are the most traditional type of orthodontic treatment. They feature three main components:

  • Elastic rubber bands (ligatures)
  • The archwire (placed through the braces)
  • The metal brackets (placed on your teeth)

The elastic rubber bands will keep the archwire secure to your brackets. During treatment, they’ll apply pressure to move your teeth into the desired position.

Self-Ligating Metal Braces

Self-ligating metal braces are a modern take on traditional metal braces. Self-ligating metal braces don’t require elastic rubber bands to secure the archwire in place. Instead, these braces feature brackets that use a locking mechanism to secure the wire.

The locking mechanism will create less friction during treatment. It can ensure your teeth move more efficiently.

These braces are usually made of metal. However, some orthodontists offer plastic and ceramic options. Using a non-metal option can make it less obvious you’re receiving treatment.

How Orthodontic Treatment Works

Schedule a consultation appointment at your orthodontist’s office if you’re interested in wearing braces. They’ll assess your teeth and jaws to determine if you’re an ideal candidate for treatment.

Orthodontic treatment can help if you have a(n):

  • Overbite
  • Underbite
  • Crossbite
  • Gaps between your teeth

Before placing your braces, your orthodontist will clean and dry the surface of your teeth. They’ll apply a special adhesive or glue to the surface of each tooth. Your dentist will attach your metal braces over the adhesive.

During the bracket placement stage, your orthodontist will individually bond a metal bracket to each tooth using this adhesive. Once they’re secure, your orthodontist will insert a wire through the brackets.

They’ll secure the wire and brackets using elastic rubber bands or ligatures, depending on the type of metal braces you choose. Once your braces are secure, they’ll make adjustments.

These adjustments will ensure the braces are applying enough pressure on the desired place. Remember, you may need future adjustments after your initial appointment.

Before leaving your orthodontist’s office, talk to them about caring for your metal braces and teeth. Their tips can help you avoid damaging the braces or neglecting your oral health.

The Benefits

Metal braces are effective at treating a range of orthodontic issues, including mild crowding and severe malocclusions. Other treatments aren’t always ideal for treating more severe concerns.

Metal braces are more durable than other options. They can withstand pressure and chewing forces. They’re also resistant to wear.

Talk to your orthodontist before beginning treatment. Reviewing the pros and cons of your braces options will help you make an informed choice.

Wearing Braces

Caring for your braces will help you maintain good oral health during treatment. Make sure to brush and floss your teeth after each meal. Use a soft toothbrush and toothpaste that includes fluoride.

Avoid foods that could damage your metal braces. These include fibrous, sticky, or hard foods. Otherwise, you could damage the brackets. Avoid chewing on pencils, biting your nails, or opening objects with your teeth.

If you play sports, consider wearing a mouthguard to avoid injuries. Otherwise, certain activities can put your metal braces at risk.

Schedule follow-up appointments at your orthodontist’s regularly. They can replace your elastic bands, make adjustments, and monitor your progress. If you damage your braces, schedule an appointment as soon as possible.

Neglecting to visit your orthodontist’s office could delay your treatment plan. Damage to the brackets or wires could cause damage to the inside of your mouth. Seeking immediate treatment can help you avoid complications.

Paying for Braces

Visit your orthodontist’s office to determine the cost of your metal braces. The cost will vary based on your:

  • Location
  • Type of braces
  • Duration of treatment

Orthodontic treatment typically costs between $5,000 and $6,000. By comparison, Invisalign treatment can cost as much as $8,000.

Dental insurance often covers a portion of the cost. Make sure to check with your provider for more information.

Discuss the Types of Metal Braces Today

If you need orthodontic treatment, don’t hesitate to discuss your options with an orthodontist. They’ll help you determine which types of metal braces suit your needs. After wearing braces, you can show off your stunning straight teeth with renewed confidence!

Ready to begin orthodontic treatment? At Owl Orthodontics, we deliver modern orthodontic treatment for kids, teens, and adults. Treatment does more than straighten teeth; it can also improve your quality of life.

We’ve straightened smiles since 1955. Discover a precise, efficient experience that aligns with your busy life. Schedule your consultation for a personalized approach to orthodontic treatment today!