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Types of Braces

Smiling women with braces

Dental braces are a fixed orthodontic appliance that uses a series of brackets and wires to gradually align the teeth. There are two variations of dental braces that can be used. The first is traditional metal braces, which use brackets and wire made from metal. Traditional metal braces are the most commonly used and people are the most familiar with them. However, ceramic braces can also be used. Ceramic braces are similar in structure to traditional metal braces, however instead of metal they are made of ceramic brackets and tooth-colored wire. The coloring of ceramic braces allows them to blend with the teeth, making them less noticeable than traditional metal braces. 


Did You Know?

Although many people associate dental braces with correcting crooked teeth, orthodontic treatment can actually treat a range of problems including incorrect spacing, crowding, and malocclusion. 


Frequently Asked Questions: 

Am I a candidate for dental braces?

Candidates for dental braces are individuals who have teeth that are improperly spaced, overcrowded, crooked, overlapping, or that protrude from their mouth. Additionally, people who have an overbite, under bite, or cross bite are also candidates for dental braces. However, only an experienced orthodontist can determine if dental braces are the best orthodontic treatment. To find out if dental braces are right for you, schedule a consultation with your Glendale Orthodontist, Dr. Massih today. 


What can I expect when undergoing orthodontic treatment with dental braces at Massih Orthodontics?

When undergoing orthodontic treatment with dental braces at Massih Orthodontics, you can expect to begin with a consultation discussing your individual case and proposed treatment plan. After your consultation, the metal or ceramic brackets will be adhered to the front surface of your teeth. An archwire will then be placed over the brackets and elastic bands will be used to hold it in place. In some cases, small plastic discs called spacers may be placed between your molars about a week before the braces are applied. 

Once the braces have been placed, you will return to Massih Orthodontics about every 6-8 weeks at first and then 4-6 weeks towards the end of treatment to have adjustments made. After first having the braces placed or after adjustments, you may experience some minor discomfort or soreness. If needed, over the counter pain medications can be used to alleviate this. 


How do I care for dental braces?

To care for your dental braces, you will need to practice good oral hygiene like brushing twice a day for two minutes at a time and flossing with a water flosser. You will also want to brush after meals to prevent food from becoming stuck in the brackets. 

To prevent damaging your braces, you will also need to temporarily avoid foods that are excessively hard, sticky, or chewy. A list of these foods will be provided to you when your braces are applied. 


How long does orthodontic treatment with dental braces take?

The length of your orthodontic treatment will depend upon your individual case and the proposed treatment length will be discussed during your consultation. On average, orthodontic treatment with dental braces lasts about 18-36 months. 


What happens after completing orthodontic treatment with dental braces?

After your orthodontic treatment is complete, your dental braces will be removed and any remaining adhesive will be scraped off your teeth. You will be provided with a clear retainer to maintain the new position of the teeth. Immediately after having your braces removed, the retainer will need to be worn for 12 hours at night for the first two years. After that, you can transition to wearing the retainer only when you sleep.