Ceramic braces offer an upgrade on the traditional metal braces while still doing a great job at moving your teeth. At Central Texas Orthodontics in Austin, TX, we can help you decide if these braces are the right choice for you.
Ceramic Braces: What Are the Advantages?
It’s no secret that people often avoid braces because of the look, and particularly if they are already adults. Despite the obvious advantages of having a perfect smile, it’s hard to face the idea of carrying around a “metal mouth” for a year or even 18 months in order to get there. If this has been a concern for you, then it’s important to know the advantages of ceramics.
1. They Are Discreet
Ceramics are the same shape as metal braces, and they work in the same way. But where metal braces are obtrusive and impossible to miss on the teeth, ceramic brackets are smaller and nearly invisible. The brackets themselves are clear, white, or colored to match your teeth, meaning they are far less noticeable than metal brackets.
Meanwhile, the archwires can be colors to blend in with your teeth, making them even more discreet. Most people find them an attractive alternative to having metal in their mouths.
2. They Are Tough
The early ceramic braces were a little fragile. They weren’t a good choice for teens, athletes, or anyone else with a really active lifestyle. The modern braces we use at Central Texas Orthodontics are refined and capable of holding up under a lot more activity than the old ones.
Although we should still discuss your lifestyle before you make the final choice, when you get quality ceramic braces from an experienced practitioner, you generally have nothing to worry about.
3. They Are a Snap to Take Off
Because so much has gone into developing these braces and ensuring their quality, one of their advantages is how easy they are to remove. It’s much easier to take these off than some of their earlier counterparts, and you won’t experience tooth demineralization in the process. That’s because the bonding agents used to put on the clear brackets are strong yet easily dissolved with the right agents.
4. They Work More Quickly Than Invisalign
If you think about discrete orthodontic treatments, you probably think right away of Invisalign. These clear aligners are almost completely undetectable, and there’s no denying that even ceramic braces are a bit more visible than these aligners. However, ceramics work more quickly. Ceramics offer a level of discretion that almost matches Invisalign, but you can be done with treatment that much faster.
5. They Work In More Cases Than Invisalign
Again, Invisalign is great, and for some people, they are a perfect choice. If you’re interested in these clear aligners, come talk to us at Central Texas Orthodontics. We can provide them, and we can help you discover whether they are the right choice for you. The truth is, however, that there are some cases where Invisalign simply isn’t the right choice. In those cases, ceramics offer a discreet option that can work much more effectively.
6. They Are More Comfortable Then Metal
Because the brackets are rounded and made of ceramic, most people find them less irritating than their metal counterparts. They are simply less likely to cut the mouth or tongue or get in the way of life.
7. They Don’t Stain Easily
You may have heard people say to avoid ceramics because they stain. While that was true of the earliest models made in the 80s, it’s no longer such a worry. With modern technology, these braces are now comfortable, clear, and unlikely to discolor if you follow a few simple steps.
8. They Are Still Customizable
One thing that our younger patients often enjoy about braces is the chance to add colored bands that reflect their personality. Many children enjoy changing the color of their bands at every visit. With ceramic braces, kids (and adults!) have a choice to add some flair to their braces with colored bands while still enjoying all the other benefits of this option.
Are Ceramic Braces Right for Me?
The best way to make a choice for ceramics is to come to speak with us. We can consider your orthodontic issues and lifestyle as well as your goals and budget. We’ll help you make the right choice. However, there are a few things that might make you a good candidate:
You Want a Discreet Option
This is perhaps the biggest draw of these braces and a good sign you should consider them. If you’ve been putting off braces because of the way they look, ceramics could allow you to fix your orthodontic issues without treatment being so noticeable. This is an especially good option for adults in general, teens who are more sensitive about teasing from their peers, and anyone in a job where they are frequently facing the public.
You Can Follow Directions
There are a few changes to your lifestyle that you’ll need to make to ensure you get the best experience with ceramics. For example, while modern ceramics are resistant to staining, if you drink enough heavily staining foods and beverages, like red wine, coffee, or tomatoes, you can still potentially discolor your braces. However, if you can remember to clean your mouth after consuming these items, you won’t have anything to worry about.
Likewise, though modern ceramics are far more durable than earlier versions, if you play a sport where you are very likely to be hit in the mouth or head, it might be wise to seek another treatment unless you’re able to give up the sport for a time.
You Aren’t a Candidate for Invisalign
As stated above, Invisalign is a great choice for some people, but if you’re not a good candidate for these clear aligners because of the severity of your orthodontic issues, then ceramics give you a way to treat even more severe problems without having to resort to obtrusive and unsightly metal braces.
Living With Braces
Whenever you have braces, whether they are metal or ceramic, there are a few things you’ll need to know about how they affect everyday life. Knowing about all this in advance allows you to make an informed decision about the right time to pursue orthodontic treatment.
Changing the Way You Eat
Whether you have metal or ceramic, your braces are susceptible to breakage with the wrong foods. It’s important to also avoid foods that can get too deeply stuck around the brackets and provide a breeding ground for bacteria. This means avoiding things that are too hard or that require a lot of biting to get into, such as hard candies or apples, and food that can be crunched up into very small pieces.
Changing the Way You Feel
It’s normal for your braces to cause your mouth to feel a little different. This is nothing to worry about and is a sign the braces are doing what they should. When you first have your braces put on, and occasionally when you have an adjustment, you may feel a bit sore. This typically goes away quickly and is easily resolved by taking over-the-counter painkillers.
You might also be surprised to find your teeth feeling a little loose, and that’s a great sign. It means your braces are doing their work and repositioning their teeth. Once they reach their final position, they’ll feel strong and perfect.
Changing the Way You Clean
It requires a bit of care and practice to carefully clean your mouth when you have braces. You’ll still brush your teeth twice a day morning and evening for two minutes at a time, as normal, but you’ll also need to brush after every meal. It’s important to use a soft brush and to reach the base of the gums and all around the brackets. We’ll help you understand how to brush and floss effectively to care for your braces.
The Benefits of Orthodontics
It’s not uncommon for people to skip orthodontic treatment, sometimes because of a fear of expense, but more often because it just seems like too much trouble or inconvenience. But there are some important reasons to get your orthodontic issues addressed sooner rather than later.
Improve Your Health
You might not be aware of how important your mouth is to your overall health, but your teeth affect that health in many ways. For one thing, straight teeth are easier to clean, meaning you’re less likely to suffer gum problems or get an infection. Cavities are less likely when you’re able to maintain good oral hygiene, too.
Another way braces can help your health is through improving digestion. Misaligned teeth don’t chew food efficiently, leaving more work for your stomach. This makes things easier on your whole digestive system.
Protect Your Jawbone
When your teeth aren’t properly aligned, your jawbone can actually degrade over time. Bone loss takes place because the misalignment allows bacteria to eat away at the bones. While the full effects of this problem don’t manifest right away, eventually you will notice it in the shape of your face.
If you’ve been living with a less-than-perfect smile, it’s possible you haven’t even realized how much it affects you. When your teeth are crooked, you know, and you don’t want to show that off. This can lead you to constantly hide your smile, causing people to think you’re not happy or that you don’t enjoy being with them.
A crooked smile can also interfere with your career opportunities, especially if you let it keep you from pursuing job interviews out of worry about what people will think of your teeth. You’ll be amazed at how much lighter and more confident you’ll feel when you know your teeth and smile are perfect.
Improve Your Speech
For some people, misaligned teeth are such a significant issue that they actually cause chronic speech problems. This can make it hard to pronounce certain words or cause you to make whistling noises when speaking certain sounds. Orthodontic treatment can address this issue and correct the problem.
This is more of an issue for children than for adults, but if your child has crooked teeth or a pronounced overbite, it could make them a target for bullying. By addressing the orthodontic issues, you not only give your child the gift of a lifetime of better oral health, but you also make it easier for them to positively interact with their peers.
Consider Ceramic Braces
Ceramics are just one great choice you have when it comes to orthodontic treatment. To learn more, reach out to us at Central Texas Orthodontics in Austin, TX today. We’re committed to helping you achieve a perfect smile.