How do braces work?
Braces achieve your desired result by placing consistent pressure on your teeth. Slowly and painlessly, the connective tissue in your gums shifts, allowing your bone to grow into place while holding your teeth in their new, desired position. This process is called bone remodeling.
At SmileLife Orthodontics, located in El Paso (Southeast and Far East), Corpus Christi, and Las Cruces, we are dedicated to helping our patients with their orthodontic needs. We understand that choosing braces is a big commitment and we want to help make the treatment process easy, painless, and rewarding. The most common reasons for braces are:
Common Treatments / Braces
- Crowding of the teeth
- Open bite: front teeth don’t touch
- Deep overbite: lower front teeth bite into palate
- Missing lateral incisors
- Underbite: lower front teeth in front of upper teeth
- Spacing of teeth
- Overjet: protruding front teeth
How do braces work? They have three main components:
Brackets – made from metal or (tooth-colored) ceramic, brackets are attached to each tooth, either by bonding (like glue or cement) or with a band.
Arch Wire – a thin metal wire that runs over each bracket and provides the force and pressure used to move teeth.
Elastic – known as “ligature” or “O-ring,” elastics come in many colors and are used to hold the arch wires in place. Elastics are usually changed at each adjustment visit.
About Orthodontic Treatment (Braces)
What is the treatment like with braces?
Each patient is unique with their treatment plan, goals, and timeline. However, the process and stages share a commonality.
Active Treatment Phase
Teeth movement and bone remodeling happen when the archwire puts pressure on the teeth. Sometimes appliances such as headgear are needed to stop the movement of particular teeth so others can align appropriately around them, or springs or rubber bands may be used to put pressure on a tooth at a specific angle so that it moves into alignment in harmony with the rest of the teeth.
Once teeth movement is complete in the active part of orthodontic treatment, your teeth may look perfect, but the full treatment is not finished. The retention phase of braces treatment is essential to ensure that your teeth stay in their proper place. It takes a while to get your teeth moving, and whether or not you can see it, it takes time for that movement to stop and for the bone to grow around the teeth. This is especially true for younger patients, whose jaw bones are often still growing and developing during and after their active treatment phase. This is why it is essential to wear your retainers as advised by your orthodontist – so you can enjoy the results of your time and effort – for life!
Treatment Options (Your Choice)
Are clear or ceramic braces the right choice?
By talking to your orthodontist and our treatment coordinator, you can decide if clear or ceramic braces are the right treatment for you. Our office can provide answers to your questions and extra information explaining the benefits of each treatment. If you would like to learn more about clear braces, ceramic braces, and all of the options available to you, please contact our practice and schedule an appointment today.
Our orthodontists specialize in correcting your bite and the straightness of your teeth. At SmileLife, we are devoted to fixing your dental and facial issues to give you a smile you’ve always wanted. If you are struggling to speak, chewing, or closing your jaw, you may need to see an orthodontist.