Overview of dental braces: what you need to know
If you have crooked teeth, misaligned bite like overbite, crossbite due to uneven teeth, there is still hope.
Many treatments can help improve these problems, bringing you straight, even teeth and a confident, bright smile. One of these is dental braces.
The dentist will use specialized dental tools to realign your teeth and produce an even bite. So what are the steps of braces and what you need to know before receiving them? The East Rose Dental (Old Rose Dental Clinic) will show you!
How it is done
The functioning mechanism of braces is placing a constant force on teeth over a certain period of time. The aim is to move teeth in a certain direction. When teeth move, the jaw bones will change their shape, too.
Braces consist of the following components:
1. Brackets: small squares that are attached directly to the front of each tooth using a dental bonding agent. They can also be bonded to orthodontic bands. Brackets serve as a handle that holds the archwires used to move the teeth. Brackets are typically made of stainless steel or tooth-colored hard plastic. They are sometimes bonded to the back of teeth to not be seen.
2. Orthodontic bands: are made of stainless steel, clear, or tooth-colored materials. They are bonded to teeth using a dental bonding agent. The dentist will wrap the bands around each tooth to secure them and give the brackets and anchors to move teeth to the new position.
3. Spacers: separators that fit between teeth to produce a small space before orthodontic bands are placed. You have to wear spacers 1 week prior to receiving braces
4. Archwires: are attached to the brackets and used to create tracks to direct the movement of teeth.
5. Ties: small rubber rings or thin wires used to fasten the archwire to the brackets
6. A buccal tube is placed on the band of the last tooth to keep the end of the archwire fixed in place
7. Springs: placed on the archwires between the brackets to push, pull, open, or close the spaces between teeth
8. Rubber or elastic bands are attached to the hooks on brackets and worn between the upper and lower in a variety of ways
9. Retainers can replace braces once the procedure has been successful. Retainers are created to fit with your teeth after removing the braces to keep your teeth securely in place so they won’t shift back to their original position.
Besides the common fixed braces, many people opt for removable braces, too. With these, you will wear clear aligners instead of fixed aligners. This is the ideal choice for those who need minor orthodontic corrections but don’t want to go with fixed braces that are visible to others.
What you need to know about dental braces
The ideal time for braces
The period of 10-14 years old is considered the “golden time” for braces. This is when the bones are still developing and teeth can be easily moved. However, it is still possible for you to receive braces when you are no longer in this age range. In fact, plenty of adults choose this treatment for healthy, nice-looking teeth. However, it may take longer and there will be a bit more pain.
How long will you have to wear braces?
The required time for braces varies individually, depending on the state and health of the teeth, gums, and jawbones and whether the patient follows the instructions from the dentist. Normally it will take you from 1 to 3 years for the treatment to complete.
After the braces are removed, most patients will have to wear a retainer for the first 6 months and then during sleep for many years after.
How often you need to see the orthodontist during the treatment?
You need to see the orthodontist once every month to ensure that the braces are creating steady pressure on your teeth. The orthodontist will also adjust the wires, springs, or rubber bands based on the state of your teeth at the time.
Are braces painful?
Unfortunately, the tension created by your braces may result in some pain although there is no damage done to your teeth. Moreover, you may develop some ulcers on the gums and lips. Washing your mouth with salt water can help relieve the pressure and pain. All of the side effects will gradually resolve themselves after a few weeks.
Other things you need to keep in mind are your diet and oral hygiene. Use dental floss after every meal and brush teeth twice a day. Although this will take more of your time and it may be harder for you to pronounce, keep reminding yourself of your target of having nice teeth. You will become more motivated that way.
Does age affect the success of braces?
The mechanical process for moving teeth in braces is the same at any age. Therefore, the benefits of this treatment are the same for everyone at any age. The main difference between treatments for adults and children is the treatment time for adults takes more time as their bones are no longer developing like these of children.
Can you continue to play sports when wearing braces?
You can continue to engage in any sport while wearing braces. However, when you play sports with a risk of getting hit in your mouth, you need to wear a specially designed mouthguard. This mouthguard which is made of soft plastic and designed to fit your braces will protect the soft tissues inside your mouth.
Is there any food to avoid during the treatment?
Cut down on sweets, fried chips, and sodas in your diet as sugary and starchy foods can lead to plaque buildup that can result in tooth decay and gingivitis. Also, cut hard foods (such as apples and carrots) into smaller pieces as biting on hard foods can affect your braces.
What is the aftercare of braces like?
After your braces are removed, your teeth will be cleaned thoroughly. The dentist may take X-rays to see if your teeth are straight as expected and whether there is the development of any wisdom tooth. If there is, that wisdom tooth is required to be extracted to prevent newly straightened teeth from shifting back.
What is the cost of braces?
The cost of braces varies for different cases. Treatment of braces may cost from 50-100 million VND on average.
Where to receive braces?
To achieve the best outcomes out of your brace treatment you need to “place your trust” in a reliable dental clinic.