The dental brace or orthodontic bracket is principally used in the correction of misaligned jaws, crooked teeth and jagged or irregular bites such as underbites and overbites. Braces come in many varieties. There are the regular metallic braces, the clear braces, and lingual braces. All three of them will correct severe, moderate and mild crowding. Before braces are placed into the mouth, the dentition needs to be healthy first. Once the dentition is in good health, and oral hygiene is good, the process of applying braces can commence.
The first stage of braces is the measuring process. This involves taking of several X-rays, the OPG, Lateral Ceph, and sometimes the hand wrist X-ray. Impressions are taken of the mouth and many measurements are recorded. Once all these measurements are done, a treatment plan is devised to correct the misaligned teeth jaws. Each case is different and requires careful planning.
In young children, growth modifying appliances are sometimes used first before braces are put in to correct bone related issues. In adults, growth has completed and we cannot modify the growth of the jaws as much.
Treatment times for braces can vary from 6 months to 2 years.
The clear ceramic braces are tooth coloured, but have a tendency to break off. As a result of them breaking off, there are more visits to place new brackets in, which can extend the treatment time and cost.
The alternative to braces is invisalign. Invisalign is can correct only mild cases of crowding and can only tip teeth, whereas braces have the full range of tooth movement allowing it to correct severe cases.
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