All About Braces
Dental braces are devices placed on the teeth to align crooked or crowded teeth, as well as bridge dental gaps. They are ideal for treating dental issues such as open bites, underbites, and overbites. Wearing braces for an extended period of time can help gently make your teeth shift, resulting in a straighter smile.
At we often recommend braces to our patients who may have serious dental concerns. Our team will gladly talk you through what braces are, the types of braces, how they work, their benefits, who should wear them, and how to take care of them.
How Do Braces Work?
Braces work by exerting pressure on the teeth and gradually directing them to a specific position. As pressure is exerted on your teeth, the periodontal membrane compresses on one side and stretches on the other. This action makes your teeth gradually shift.
Types of Braces
There are a number of treatment options available to patients, ranging from “invisible” (or lingual braces) to clear plastic aligners. For instance, lingual braces are not seen, because they are placed behind teeth. Conventional braces, or metal wire braces, are made of stainless steel. They are the most common type of braces.
Clear plastic aligners are also used to move the teeth. They are an option for patients with less severe malocclusion. Some patients are allergic to nickel, which is used to make stainless steel. In these cases, gold-plated stainless-steel braces are a good option. Finally, titanium braces look like stainless braces but are quite durable and may be ideal for patients allergic to nickel.
Benefits of Braces
Braces align your teeth by gradually moving them into a specific position. This improves how they look. Cleaning them is easier, and the teeth fit together better, making chewing and talking less of a challenge.
Patients with protruding teeth can have them positioned to their correct alignment. It can be a challenge to take care of crowded and crooked teeth, but properly aligned teeth are easier to clean. Furthermore, spaces between your teeth can make them wear out over time, but braces can change how they look and function.
Another complication that can arise from a malocclusion is jawbone erosion. This can be caused by awkward bites, but straighter teeth allow you to chew food with ease. By getting braces, you can help prevent your jawbone from eroding. Other benefits of braces are that they improve your oral health, enhance your speech, and improve digestion.
Who Might Need Braces
You might need braces if your front teeth protrude, you have crooked or overcrowded teeth, or if you have wide or not enough spacing between your teeth. Another reason why you should wear braces is when you have an overbite, underbite, or if you simply want to have a more attractive smile.
Taking Care of Braces
It is important to have braces checked by our team at routine checkups. You should also thoroughly clean your teeth daily. You should be careful when cleaning your braces, as the material they are made of is delicate and can easily break. Our dental team is happy to show how to clean them properly, depending on the type of braces you wear.
Moreover, you should cut the intake of sugary drinks and food, as they may affect both your teeth and braces. Other foods to avoid and can be harmful to your teeth are hard and sticky foods. Lastly, brush your teeth immediately before you go to bed, when you wake up in the morning, and after meals.
If you have any questions about braces, please visit or give us a call at (503) 228-1945. Our friendly team will be happy to help you and give you any answers to your questions about braces.
Types of Braces