You’ve just learned from the orthodontist that your teenager needs braces. There are many types of braces to choose from, and this can be both a benefit and a drawback. Which type is best for your teens? Should they be traditional metal braces, Invisalign, tooth-colored, or lingual braces? Here is an explanation of each type of braces.
Traditional Metal Braces
Traditional metal braces are made of metal brackets and wire and rubber bands, but nowadays they are lighter and less onerous to wear than they were back in the day. If you are on a budget, traditional braces are often less costly than other types and have the added benefit of bringing the teeth into alignment faster. But they do have other drawbacks in addition to generally being considered unsightly. The patient needs to practice strict dental hygiene and forgo foods that are crunchy and sticky while being treated with these braces. For some teens, those might be some of their favorite foods.
Ceramic or tooth-colored braces have the advantage of being the same color as your teenager’s teeth. Indeed, they can even mimic the texture of their teeth. Tooth-colored braces are a good option if your teen is self-conscious about wearing braces, but you both need to know that these braces, which are made of ceramic, can stain just the way teeth do. They’re also more expensive than traditional braces. This kind could be just what your teen is looking for, so be sure to let them know about this option as soon as possible.
With lingual braces, the brackets are applied to the inside of the teeth. As such, they require a lot of skill to install and are pricey. Like tooth-colored braces, they’re hard to see, but along with their price, they need even more care and maintenance than traditional braces. Your teen will need to pay special attention to the backs as well as the fronts of their teeth. Some teens aren’t quite ready for that kind of dedication.
Invisalign braces aren’t technically braces at all but a series of trays that align the teeth. These trays are made of clear plastic, so they are very hard to see. What makes Invisalign even more attractive for many patients is that the trays can be taken out by the wearer in order for them to eat and brush their teeth. The only downside is that you teen will need to be conscientious enough to put the tray back in when eating and dental hygiene are over. These are very popular with all sorts of people. Teens might find them particularly attractive because they are completely invisible.
Though braces may be burdensome for the amount of time they need to be worn, you should remind your teen that in the end they will have a beautiful smile full of straight teeth. Straight teeth are not only pleasing to look at; they also help people eat and speak correctly as well. How they achieve this is up to you and your teen.
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