Dental Care for Kids: Finding the Right Dentist

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What Are Clear Braces?

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Orthodontics have always been about improving your smile, and now there are more ways to provide that. One type of braces has taken the interest of many adult orthodontia patients--clear braces. Clear braces are also referred to as ceramic braces, and they have changed the way patients use orthodontic treatments. Instead of a mouthful of stainless steel, ceramic braces cut down on the amount of metal in your mouth. The effect is a less obvious way to wear braces.

How will they look?

The positive aspects of clear braces lay in the fact that they are mostly clear. Don't expect them to be invisible, however. They can blend quite well, but it will be apparent that there is something on your teeth. In addition, the metal arch wire worn through each bracket won't be clear. The elastics placed on each bracket that keep the arch wire in place are clear.

If you are a smoker, tea or coffee drinker or enjoy red wine with great regularity, you may want to speak with your orthodontist before deciding on ceramic braces. They can pick up stains without great difficulty, and you may be left with a yellowish look. The clear elastics can pick up stains even quicker. Your orthodontist can help you decide how much of those beverages may cause staining.

Are there any drawbacks?

There are a few drawbacks to getting clear, ceramic braces. Ceramic brackets will be somewhat larger than their stainless steel counterparts. They are less durable, so they can't be used in cases that will receive more forces. Also due to their lessened durability, the process of wearing clear braces may be slower. This is because breakage occurs more often, slowing down the process, and also because they aren't strong enough to be pushed and pulled as quickly.

As noted above, they may stain. And because they are a higher cost to manufacture and a somewhat longer treatment process, the price is higher. Ceramic or clear braces can be a great choice. If the thought of grinning through a mouthful of metal puts you off of the idea of getting braces, definitely inquire about clear braces. They are often a better choice for adult patients, as patient compliance is higher with adults in regards to staying away from foods and activities that will break the adhesive of the brackets to the teeth. Ask your orthodontist if you would be a good candidate for clear braces.

For more information, contact a business such as Robert Tartaglione DDS.