There are several types of braces and orthodontic appliances that Dr. Brown may use to help you straighten your teeth and achieve a healthy, beautiful smile. When you visit Brown Orthodontics, our orthodontist and team will carefully evaluate your teeth and bite to determine which type of braces or appliance will best meet your needs. Call us at 360-256-7220 to learn more about types of braces and appliances and make your appointment at one of our offices in Vancouver, Washington.
Types of Braces
The types of braces available at Brown Orthodontics include:
Traditional metal braces are the most common type of braces and are more comfortable today than ever before. Made of high-grade stainless steel, metal braces straighten your teeth using metal brackets and arch wires. With metal braces, you have the option of adding colored elastics (rubber bands) for a more unique and colorful smile.
Gold braces are similar to traditional metal braces in many ways. They are made of stainless steel, but are uniquely coated in gold. The gold coating may be considered a more cosmetic option than traditional metal braces. The cost of gold braces is surprisingly comparable to most clear braces.
Ceramic braces are made of clear materials and are therefore less visible on your teeth than metal braces. For this reason, ceramic braces are used mainly on older teenagers and adult patients who have cosmetic concerns. While they are visually less prominent, they do require more attention to oral hygiene as ceramic braces are larger and are more brittle than their metal counterparts. For these reasons, ceramic braces tend to be used more on upper front teeth than on lower teeth.
Invisalign® clear aligners are a series of invisible, removable, and comfortable acrylic trays that straighten your teeth like braces. Not only are the aligners invisible, they are removable, so you can eat and drink what you want while in treatment. Plus, brushing and flossing are less of a hassle. The aligners are comfortable and have no metal to cause mouth abrasions during treatment.
Wild Smiles® designer braces give patients a way to express their personality by designing their smile. Patients can choose from Starts, Hearts, Flowers, Footballs, Super-Diamonds, and Sports Balls to customize their orthodontic treatment.
Types of Appliances
The types of appliances Dr. Brown may use as part of your treatment include:
Wearing elastics (or rubber bands) improves the fit of your upper and lower teeth. Wear rubber bands as instructed, and remember that the rubber bands work far more efficiently if they’re worn as prescribed.
The Herbst® appliance reduces overbite by encouraging the lower jaw forward and the upper molars backward. This fixed appliance is used mostly for younger, growing children and is worn for about 12-15 months.
The lower lingual holding arch is designed to hold the permanent back molars in place while the larger primary teeth exchange with the smaller adult premolars. This will help save more space for the erupting permanent teeth and could also perhaps provide for a future non-extraction treatment plan.
The palatal expander “expands” (or widens) your upper jaw by putting gentle pressure on your upper molars each time an adjustment is made. Dr. Brown will instruct you about when and how to adjust your expander. When you achieve the desired expansion, you will wear the appliance for several months to solidify the expansion and to prevent regression.
Retainers may be removable or fixed. They hold your teeth in their new, correct positions after your teeth have been straightened. Dr. Brown will instruct you on how to care for your retainer and about the duration of the wear. Wearing your retainer as directed is crucial to prevent regression of your treatment.
Separators are little rubber doughnuts that may be placed between your teeth to push them apart so that orthodontic bands may be placed during your next appointment. The separators will be removed before we place the bands. Separators do not mix well with sticky foods, toothpicks, or floss.
For more information about the types of braces and orthodontic appliances available for your treatment, contact our practice today.