There comes a time in most people’s lives where they will have to undergo orthodontic treatment for the sake of smile correction. It’s basically something that almost everyone lives through, and for many kids, wearing braces becomes the right of passage from childhood into their teen years, where they start to think about the way they look to others. When people have straight teeth, we interpret them to be cleaner and smarter. For some adults, however, they have completely missed the opportunity to wear braces during their younger years, leaving them very often with a lot of anxiety over their appearance in their social lives and their workplace.
Some people get a referral from the dentist in order to see an orthodontist for the first time – this is usually when the case is bad enough to affect the health of your teeth. But when you want questions answered about cosmetic braces, a dentist will actually not be able to help you, but they will refer you to an orthodontist (it is important, of course, that you keep a healthy smile in order to keep it beautiful). The orthodontist will determine whether or not you will need braces for your smile correction, first of all. If your case is not severe, then you will be possibly be given retainers to help your case. Retainers will be used to manipulate your teeth together by holding them in place through a wire that is custom fitted to fit your mouth. If this type of method is not effective, or if the orthodontist thinks that you are not eligible for this treatment, then he or she will seek the alternative of using braces for treatment.
Traditional metal braces – we all know what these look like. These are the kinds of braces that you see children and teens wear. Made out of steel, the braces are made of brackets that are applied to the teeth that need correcting, and then the wires that are attached to the brackets are tightened to manipulate the teeth into proper alignment. This is the option that may have you wary of getting braces in the first place – they look very gaudy and unprofessional, but luckily there are other options available for people who really want to seek discretion.
For those that need more discreet options in order to upkeep a professional appearance, there are a few other options to consider. Of the discreet options, the most affordable option would be clear braces. Mechanically speaking, they work the same way as standard braces do, except they are made of ceramic materials, which makes them look clear. It certainly can be noticeable to someone else if they were paying particular attention to your mouth, but otherwise, it’s a lot more discreet than the attention-grabbing metal braces. Considering that they work much like normal braces do, they are very effective for all types of cases.
If you were hoping for something a lot more subtle and silent, there are lingual braces, which are applied to the back of the teeth instead of in the front. It makes it so that no one can notice at all, unless you point it out to them, of course. These kinds of braces are not for everyone – first of all, your case needs to be eligible for this type of treatment, or else they may not be able to work for you at all, since these are not appropriate for severe cases. Secondly, this method can be pretty uncomfortable, with the application of it generally complex and the wear slightly painful or bothersome, so it’s best if you discuss this option thoroughly with your orthodontist first to see if this is the right method for you.
Another option available is Invisalign. Many of us have seen the commercials that feature them. They are clear plastic aligners that are measured and designed by a computer program and are individualized based on the person they are for as the orthodontist makes adjustments for them. They are printed by a 3-D printer. They wear like a mouth guard and look very clear and you can also eat what you want to eat, so this is essentially the ideal option. Every two weeks as your smile is corrected and improved, you will just need to visit the orthodontist again and have a new one made. This is the most expensive option for orthodontic treatment, however, and with a price of $3,500 for the most traditional braces (which are the cheapest option), you may want to think a lot about your budget before making the go ahead on this option. Whatever your choice, you will soon find a better smile on your face.