Braces are dental appliances used by orthodontists to improve the function and aesthetic nature of a person’s smile. Although they can vary in type and duration, braces use the same physiological process to gradually move teeth and bone over time into the desired position using gentle pressure.
At Castle Dental, we believe everyone–kids and adults alike–deserve a straight, beautiful, and healthy smile they can be proud of. That’s why, in addition to comprehensive dental care services, we also offer orthodontic treatment for patients of all ages at many of our convenient locations.
Only an orthodontist or dentist trained in orthodontics can determine if you are a good candidate for braces. Braces can resolve a variety of alignment issues, from minor to moderate and severe, in patients of various ages.
There are several different types of braces but the most common are traditional metal braces, clear braces, and lingual. Although they look slightly different, they all work the same way.
All braces consist of brackets adhered to each tooth with a metal wire threaded through each bracket. The braces are tightened and adjusted using this wire, called an archwire. Brackets can be made of clear ceramic or silver metal. Clear and metal braces are attached to the front of the teeth, while lingual braces are attached to the back of the teeth.
Before you have any braces placed, you’ll have an initial consultation with an orthodontist, who can be referred by your general dentist. During this first appointment, the orthodontist will take x-rays of your mouth and examine your teeth to determine the best treatment option for your particular needs. Then you’ll be scheduled for an appointment to have the braces put on.
Once you have your braces, they will need to be adjusted every 6-8 weeks by your orthodontist.
At the end of your treatment, you’ll be fitted for a retainer. Some retainers are permanently installed on the back of the teeth while others are removable.
Most patients will wear braces anywhere from 1-2 years depending on their particular orthodontic needs. However, braces are unique to every individual, so some people with severe malocclusions may need to wear them longer and may also require additional therapies or treatment, such as oral surgery, extractions, spacers, expanders, positioners or retainers.
Braces aren’t necessarily painful, but they will likely cause some discomfort when they are initially placed and immediately after any adjustments. This could include soreness or tenderness in your gums and teeth that can be treated with remedies like:
Braces can also cause sores or irritation on your tongue, gums or cheeks, especially as you get used to them in the beginning. You can use dental wax to cover sharp areas of your braces and wear a mouthguard during contact sports to help prevent injury.
You’ll take care of your braces much like you take care of your teeth normally. However, braces do make teeth more susceptible to decay because bacteria and plaque can build up around the brackets, so you’ll need to spend a little extra time cleaning around them and removing any food particles or debris.
You can also take care of your braces by being cautious of what you eat.
If your braces do break or become damaged, be sure to call your orthodontist immediately. While a broken bracket or wire isn’t an emergency, it can cause sores or irritation in your mouth and it can affect your treatment if it’s not fixed as soon as possible.
Some dental insurances will cover at least part of the cost of orthodontic care for pediatric patients, but not all, and adult braces may not be covered at all. However, it’s always worth checking with your insurance provider and the office at Castle Dental to find out what coverage you may have.
Braces are a great way to boost confidence and may be necessary to improve the overall health of your teeth and mouth. If the financial burden of braces is keeping you or your child from orthodontic treatment like braces, call Castle Dental to discuss your payment options. We offer low-interest financing options as well as flexible payment plans and will do our best to accommodate all your dental needs and financial concerns.
Castle Dental is committed to helping you smile with confidence, offering a variety of services such as cleanings, fillings, braces, and implants. Schedule your appointment today at the Castle Dental nearest you and take care of your oral health for tomorrow!