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Clear & Metal Braces

Dental brackets, commonly known as braces, are small devices that attach to either the front or back of your teeth and will work as a handle to move your teeth to a more ideal position.

Tooth movement

This is a process that requires constant pressure. Teeth will move once they receive light pressure over a long period of time. That is why your orthodontist bonds braces to your teeth for the life of your treatment or wants you to wear your Invisalign trays at all times. 

If you are wearing braces, your orthodontist moves your teeth by the wire not the braces. It’s with the help of wire that we can apply constant pressure on your teeth. These wires are made of different material, thicknesses, and with different specifications. Please refer to archwires to read more about them.

Depending on the stage of your treatment we might need to use different wire. As you might guess, even though it will work, it can become extremely difficult and time consuming if we glue the archwires directly to your teeth. Therefore instead of bonding the wire, we bond the braces directly to the teeth and leave them on for the course of your treatment and use them to hold the wire. This way, braces work as handles to hold the wire and to transfer the force from the wire to the teeth.

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Facts

  • According to some historians, braces date back to around 400-300 BC.
  • Numerous mummified individuals have been found with what appears to be orthodontic bands around their teeth.
  • Some ancient tribes used to put appliances in the mouth to prevent the movement and collapse of the teeth in the afterlife.
  • The word bracket was first introduced by Edward Angle in 1916.
  • In the beginning, the orthodontist used to put bands (metal rings) around all of the teeth which was esthetically unpleasant and was very time consuming. Who wants to sit in a dental chair for 4-5 hours!
  • The invention of tooth bonding material revolutionized orthodontics in the early 1980s and made it possible to glue the braces directly to the tooth structure. 
  • Over times the braces have become smaller and a more advanced design which has significantly reduced appointment time. That means more time for you to spend with your family and friends!

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Classification

Braces are categorized by different features; among those are overall size of the braces, size of the area that the wire fits in, type of material they are made of and how they hold the wires. These classifications are independent from each other. Each kind of braces can fall into different categories. Think of movies. One can be a comedy, action and adventure all at the same time.

Material
1. Metal: Stainless Steel, titanium or gold.
2. Clear: Ceramic, porcelain or ceramic reinforced plastic.

Ligation
1. Traditional: Need color to hold the wire. 
2. Self-ligating: Does not need color.

Overall Size
1. Profile: Ultra mini, Mini and Large
2. Width: Narrow, Medium, Wide

Slot Size
It is the designated area on the braces to receive the archwire.
1. 18 slot: The biggest wire that can fit is 0.0018 inch
2. 22 slot: The biggest wire that can fit is 0.0022 inch 

Below is a detailed description of the most commonly known braces.

Video: Traditional Metal, Traditional Clear and Hidden braces

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Traditional metal Braces

  • Most commonly used. 
  • Usually made of Stainless Steel.
  • Need colors to hold the wires.

Traditional Clear Braces

  • More esthetic.
  • Usually made of ceramic or ceramic reinforced plastic.
  • Need colors or clear elastics to hold wire. 
  • They bond better to the teeth.

Hidden Braces

Also known as lingual braces: these are the kind of braces that attach behind your teeth so no one can see them. 
For more information about hidden braces please check our page about Hidden Braces.

Self-Ligating Braces

  • They don’t need colors to hold the wire, they have a door instead. 
  • They were introduced in early 1970.
  • Can be made out of metal or clear material.
  • There are two kinds of self-ligating braces:
  • Active: Door actively pushes the wire inside the braces. 
  • Passive: Door is passive. 
  • Some of the more common systems are: Damon system, Speed system, In-Ovation R, In-Ovation C

Video: Clear Self-Ligating Braces

Damon Braces are one of the many passive self-ligating braces available in the market. The myth about them is that teeth move faster, patient experiences less pain using this system or there is no need for pulling teeth! None of these claims are correct.

We look forward to being a part of your wonderful, life-changing experience.

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