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If you’re considering straightening your teeth, there’s really nothing more daunting than selecting the right braces for you. With what seems like hundreds of options out there with varying price points, understanding what is best for you is exceptionally challenging.
In this article, we aim to give you the most valuable information, so you can make a smart, informed decision. Let’s get started.
Treatment with an orthodontist or one that ships your braces to your home?
It takes no less than 8 years of education and practice for someone to become an orthodontist. And although technology has advanced quite a lot, it is still unable to replace the creative thinking of a human being, and most importantly – a doctor’s ability to identify issues before they even arise. So, as much as we’d like to say that you can have your treatment prepared by a computer without you ever having to step foot in a clinic, this is not realistic. The results which are achieved by such treatments are minimal – they cannot address even moderate in complexity cases, let alone the truly difficult ones. And, if we have to be 100% blunt, no one can truly predict the issues you can cause to your dental health when you’re straightening your teeth without the supervision of an orthodontist.
Removable or fixed braces?
The next important decision you need to make is whether you want your braces to be removable or fixed. What’s the difference?
With removable braces, you are the person who’s most responsible for your treatment. You need to take them off every time when you want to eat or drink something, clean your teeth after eating or drinking, and put them back in. If you’re the type of person that may forget to pop back the braces, or could lose them easily, you may want to consider fixed braces. Every time you wear your braces for less than the time which your dentist told you to wear them for, you’re prolonging your treatment. We’ve seen hundreds of patients going from a predicted 12-month treatment to 24months and sometimes even more. On the positive side, if you often attend events and wouldn’t be seen wearing braces, then perhaps the removable ones will be right for you.
As the name implies, fixed braces are attached to your teeth, so there isn’t the possibility that you’ll lose them. When you choose to have your treatment with fixed braces, you can be more confident that the estimated time will be the actual treatment duration. Nonetheless, regardless of your brace’s choice, you still have to take into account genetic predisposition, or in simple words – your teeth’s desire to move as directed.
Which fixed braces are the best?
There’s no such thing as “the best braces”. All brace systems have their pros and cons and will be optimal for different scenarios. Let’s review a few examples.
The luxurious option
Fixed braces can be 100% invisible. If you’re a person who cannot afford to have braces show, you can still benefit from a teeth-straightening treatment. Choose Incognito (lingual braces attached at the back of your teeth) and you’ll have your teeth straightened without anyone ever knowing that you’re wearing braces.
The more complex cases
If you know (or have been told) that your case requires a bite correction, we’d always urge you to opt for self-ligating braces. With a clip which holds the wire, self-ligating braces cause less pressure to the teeth during treatment and are the optimal solution for complex scenarios. If you’re adamant to choose Invisalign there’s a high likelihood that no one would stop you because you’d still achieve some results, but it won’t be medically sufficient and realistically speaking, you may find yourself needing another treatment a few years later.
Moderate and easy cases
If you have seen an orthodontist and know that your case is either moderate or easy, then you can choose whichever option suits you. You’ll like to pay the lowest cost if you opt for Invisalign or traditional metal or ceramic braces. With ceramic braces you’ll benefit from clear attachments which are barely noticeable, and with traditional metal braces you are sure to benefit from the experience of the orthodontist. Being perhaps the most used method, metal braces are what absolutely every orthodontist is trained to do from the 1st day of uni.
And a few words about how long braces take
We know from experience that advertising has taught people that orthodontic treatments take 12 months or less. Can we be frank with you? That’s highly unlikely for nearly 85% of the people. We’d recommend that you prepare your mind for at least 24 months – this is what an average treatment really takes. And quite frankly, you shouldn’t want it to last less than that. Your teeth need time to move in a healthy manner and to properly calcify in the new position, so the results are temporary. This isn’t a process you want to rush.
We hope this helps and look forward to receiving your questions!