Do you want to avoid feeling self-conscious about wearing braces? As an adult, you might prefer ceramic over traditional metal braces because they’re more discreet. However, ceramic braces may take longer and require more care and maintenance. At The Happy Tooth in Chapel Hill, NC, we can help you find ways to speed up your orthodontic treatment and care for your braces so that you can get them off sooner.
Why Do Ceramic Braces Take Longer?
Ceramic braces, also known as clear braces, can require up to three years to straighten teeth, compared to less than a year or two for metal braces. The actual treatment time may also be affected by your specific condition, adherence to the treatment, and care for your braces. Ceramic materials are not as sturdy as metal. They may need to be replaced more often to prevent them from breaking down under pressure while your teeth are moving.
The use of ceramic brackets can result in an extended treatment period. Since they tend to tear faster, it might take longer to straighten your teeth between the orthodontic visits. Damages to your brackets can also cause delays. However, there’s no reason not to choose clear braces because of this issue. By taking care of your braces, you can reduce the duration of your treatment. We are also here to give you the support and advice that you need while wearing them.
How Ceramic Braces Work
The material of your braces does not affect how they are attached to your teeth and how they function during the treatment. First, brackets are bonded to the teeth, similar to the traditional metal braces. An archwire is put in the brackets with the use of elastics. These devices work to shift the position of the teeth and tighten the archwires over time.
Without much difference in how they function, clear braces are a suitable alternative to metal braces and clear aligners. While both are excellent choices, ceramic or clear braces may be a better choice for people who want to enjoy a more subtle and shorter treatment cycle.
Why Choose Ceramic Over Metal Braces?
Traditionally, there was only one choice for you if you wanted to have your teeth straightened, and that was with the use of metallic braces. Nowadays, if you need to undergo orthodontic treatment, you can select from various options, including ceramic and metal braces, as well as transparent aligners. Do you think you’d instead choose clear braces? There are many reasons why you’d prefer them over others.
Ceramics Look Better
Adults mostly favor clear braces because they’re a less visible alternative to metal braces. They are assembled using transparent materials. There are also ways to make them more discreet, such as using colored archwires. If you are self-conscious about how your teeth look, it’s not surprising that you’ll prefer to choose nearly invisible braces.
With clear braces, you won’t have to think about how they make you appear in photographs. You can smile as much as you want! Adding a colored archwire to fit your teeth means that your braces will become almost invisible in pictures.
They’re More Comfortable
Wearing clear braces can be more convenient than metal braces. The high-quality materials are not abrasive, so your gums or the sides of your mouth will not be scratched (a common problem for those who have metal braces). After a few weeks of wearing clear braces, you shouldn’t feel any pressure in your mouth anymore.
The Archwire Color Can Match Your Teeth
If you have braces bonded to your teeth, the wire that runs through the center is called the archwire. With traditional braces, the archwire can only be metal. If you choose to wear clear braces, you’ll have the option to select from colored archwires. Having color choices can make your braces look even more discreet since the archwire and the teeth can be designed to have almost the same color.
Regardless of your teeth color, you can find a matching archwire. You can confidently smile with discreet braces without thinking about how your braces would look to other people.
Minimizes Risks of Teeth Demineralization
Your teeth’s sturdy, outer surface layer is known as enamel. It protects your teeth from decaying due to the food you eat and other chemicals your mouth may come into contact with. The tooth enamel is one of the strongest materials in your body. Still, acids and other substances in some foods and substances can penetrate and weaken the tooth’s surface. These chemicals can compromise your teeth’s defenses and encourage decay.
You can rest assured knowing that the bonding agent used to adhere your braces to your teeth would be effective and gentle to your tooth enamel. Previously, braces have been responsible for chemical changes and demineralization of the enamel. However, new materials and techniques have now been developed to resolve the issues faced by previous generations.
Less Gum Irritation
Metal braces tend to irritate the gums because of the wiring used. The ceramic alternative has fewer chances of causing discomfort to your gums. It is made from less painful materials, making it less abrasive.
They Work Faster Than Clear Aligners
Invisalign is another common alternative for people who are worried about the appearance of braces on their teeth. Some people consider Invisalign to be the ideal solution since they can be removed for a few hours if needed. But what makes it perfect for some makes it less than desirable for other people.
Clear braces are bonded to your teeth all of the time and work continuously to fix your orthodontic issues. Invisalign trays may be too frequently misplaced or forgotten, leading to slower treatment.
What’s the Best Way to Speed Up Your Treatment?
Braces are the safest and most effective way to get your teeth aligned, but it doesn’t mean that you don’t want them removed as soon as possible. Braces usually take years to straighten your teeth. However, it’s possible to make the process go faster. You may hope to have a shorter treatment time by following our guidelines and taking care of your braces.
Changing Your Diet
Clear braces can be stained by dark-colored food and beverages like coffee, soda, and even fruit juices. The dark pigments of these foods may stain the material of the braces. The best way to prevent staining is, first and foremost, to avoid certain foods and beverages.
With braces, what should you eat? We advise you to stick to soft foods for the first day or two. You will be able to bite and chew on raw vegetables again, not before long. But when you eat, you will need to be careful as long as you wear braces. The first thing you need to remember is to cut your food and use your back teeth to chew.
Here are the following foods you might need to avoid during your orthodontic treatment:
- Chewy foods
- Crunchy foods
- Sticky foods
- Hard foods
- Sugary food
- Foods you have to bite into
Maintaining Good Oral Hygiene
In addition to tracking your diet, it will also help speed up treatment if you keep your braces clean after eating or drinking. If you cannot brush your teeth instantly, try at least rinsing your mouth with a glass of water. Keeping your teeth and gums clean will minimize the time that your braces are exposed to foods that are heavily colored or acidic.
Brushing and Flossing
Keep your mouth clean while wearing braces so that your teeth and gums stay healthy during the treatment. You will need additional appointments with the dentist for professional cleaning if your teeth are not clean.
Using Prescribed Appliances
To complete your treatment, we’ll ask for your cooperation and adherence. Your teeth and jaws will only move to the correct place if you wear prescribed rubber bands or other devices consistently. A lack of compliance can prolong the treatment period, so you’ll need to remind yourself of what you need to do daily.
Continuing Dental Examinations
It would be great if you practice good oral hygiene at home, including thorough brushing and flossing. You can continue to visit our dental office for dental exams at least every six months.
Wearing Retainers After Braces
After removing your braces, we will provide you with retainers designed to stabilize the orthodontic correction. Since your bone and gums around the teeth may still be loose after the treatment, retainers must be worn as guided. Unwanted shifting of the teeth will lead to re-treatment if you do not use retainers as prescribed.
Your teeth will indeed keep on gradually shifting for a lifetime. For this reason, it’s a good idea to keep wearing your retainers indefinitely. Simply wearing them only at night can make a big difference.
Who’s a Good Candidate for Ceramic Braces?
For people interested in wearing less visible braces, choosing clear braces is a good option. This kind of braces is beneficial to most adults and is often used for orthodontic treatments in the upper teeth. Nevertheless, they require careful attention. You’ll need to maintain your oral health to avoid damage to the braces and reduce treatment time.
It is also recommended that you acquire braces when all of your permanent teeth have emerged, including any wisdom teeth. Having permanent teeth ensures a shorter treatment time and a reduced risk of breaking brackets due to tooth tension. Clear braces are perfect if you work full-time or study and don’t want to attract unwanted attention to your teeth.
Are You Physically Active?
Metal braces are renowned for their reliability. Although clear braces are also strong, they’re made from another material. This material can chip or crack, as opposed to metal. Do you play extreme sports or participate in other activities where your jaw or mouth is in touch? You may want to consider using conventional braces instead if you want to prevent expensive repairs or frequent visits to the orthodontist.
Do You Have Sensitivities?
Some people note that ceramic materials tend to irritate the soft mouth tissues. This irritation may be due to the material coming into contact with their inner lips or because ceramic brackets appear larger than conventional ones. If you think you have a particularly sensitive mouth, you may need to keep this in consideration.
Will You Require Intensive Treatments?
Traditional braces can withstand more pressure than modern ceramic braces. Thus, for a more severe correction, metal braces are advised. Ceramic braces will also take longer to straighten the teeth because the changes would be slightly smaller.
Discover the Right Orthodontic Treatment for You
Ceramic braces are practical, durable, and can give you straight teeth without making you feel self-conscious. Do you need braces, or are you wondering if ceramic braces are a good option for you? Feel free to call The Happy Tooth in Chapel Hill, NC. We’re here to answer any questions you have about braces or any other dental treatment. We will be happy to help!