Different Types of Braces for Teeth

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The two most common types of braces for teeth are traditional metal braces and Invisalign clear braces. Traditional braces use metal brackets connected to the teeth with wire threaded through the brackets that adjust the teeth. Invisalign uses clear plastic retainers to adjust the teeth. Find out why Invisalign has become more and more popular with information from a general dentist in this free video on dentistry and braces.

Part of the Video Series: Dental Health & Information
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Video Transcript

There are several different variations of braces that we see today. I'm only going to talk about two of them. But there are many different variations that can be obtained by seeing an orthodontist. The two that we'll talk about today, are the traditional ones, as well as the clear ones. Which are also known as Invisalign. The first set we'll talk about are the traditional braces. That's what most people typically associate with when they think braces. What is done is, depending on what sort of types of movements, and corrections you're providing to the alignments of the teeth, small little metal brackets will be chemically bonded onto the teeth. Typically each tooth has an individual bracket, that's chemically bonded onto it, and then a wire is fed through those brackets. What happens is the wire helps move, pull on the brackets, and in turn, corrects the teeth. And as the teeth are progressing, the wires are constantly changed out. There are other apparatuses that are typically placed along with the wire, and brackets, but that's the basics of the traditional braces. Again, the brackets are essentially, chemically bonded to the teeth, and there's a wire, that's kind of fed through the brackets, to kind of help facilitate the movements of the teeth. It's the most common one, and it's also the most effective one that we see. And it's still to most orthodontists, is still the standard of choice. However, one of the problems we deal with, with regular braces, is obviously the cosmetics, and most people have a great difficulty dealing with a lot of metal in their mouth. And that's certainly a lot of hardware to carry around to move teeth. The other option that's becoming more, and more popular, is Invisalign. Invisalign, is what's known as invisible braces. While they're not really braces, when compared to the traditional kind, they do represent another method of moving teeth. In Invisalign, what's done is special molds are taken of a patients teeth. Then what happens, is there's these special clear retainers that are made. It's through these clear retainers that a patient will wear, that will help slowly move the teeth. It's different from traditional braces in the fact that they can be taken in, and out of the mouth, at your leisure. Where as the traditional ones, are fixed onto the teeth, and requires an orthodontist to go back and remove them. But with Invisalign, there's clear sets of retainers that are made, that you swap out every two, to three weeks. And the patient just snaps them over the teeth, just like a bleaching tray. And these retainers actually have different positions in them every couple of weeks, to help facilitate the movements of teeth. While it is a lot slower, and a lot less dramatic in the tooth movements that it can produce, it is a very effective way for fixing minor things. Such as a small amount of crowding, or a little bit of space, or just little cosmetic enhancements to the front teeth. But the traditional braces with the brackets, and wires, and the Invisalign clear braces, are the two most common ways that we use braces today.


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