This guide outlines the differences between clear braces vs metal ones, the alternatives and their proper care and maintenance.
It is never too late for braces in adulthood : misaligned teeth (orthodontic clinical pictures ) can be corrected for a lifetime. Most patients want improved aesthetics, but there are often medical reasons for this.
Teeth are not rigid structures that sit immovably in the jaw at the end of the growth phase. They can go hiking for as long as they live. On the one hand, this is bad because it can result in unfavorable dental situations in later years of life. On the other hand, the flexibility of the teeth is also a positive: unwanted tooth positions can be corrected at any age with orthodontic treatment .
Braces for adults are now anything but unusual and have established themselves as a trend. The proportion of the more mature generation in orthodontic practices now makes up more than 20 percent. The average age today is between 35 and 50 years.
Even people over 70 can be found among them, even if they are rather the exception. The adult patients come most frequently because crooked, gapped or protruding teeth disturb the aesthetic appearance – sometimes so much that it is difficult to smile. Also read how to choose the right teeth straightening method for your age group.
Clear braces vs metal braces
Fixed metal braces are the most common treatment device. Fixed braces are usually required to correct misaligned teeth in adults. With it, a tooth — including the tooth root — can be moved relatively specifically and effectively in all directions. Fixed braces work in principle using arches of wire that exert pressure and tensile forces and move the teeth in the desired direction.T
The wires are firmly attached to the tooth via holding plates — the brackets . They ultimately transfer the force to the teeth. In adults, the wires are generally finer than in adolescents, as the treatment is more careful and less effort is required.
Various types of brackets are available for adjusting the position, which differ in terms of material, size and fastening system. The classics among them are metal brackets made of stainless steel. With the mini brackets, the fastening elements are significantly smaller and they are more inconspicuous than the conventional variant.
They are also flatter and therefore more comfortable to wear, and teeth cleaning is easier. There are also differences in the wires. The highly elastic ones exert a gentler pressure and minimize the risk of damage to tooth roots and fibers.The “invisible” ones take aesthetics into account
All metal brackets have the disadvantage that they flash out in the mouth when you speak and laugh. For those who like things more subtle, inconspicuous tooth-colored ceramic brackets are a good alternative. Plastic brackets appear practically transparent, but due to their low hardness they are not suitable for more complex tooth movements.
Another treatment alternative are thin, almost invisible clear braces. Before the start of treatment, the clear braces are made individually for the patient and exchanged for a new set approximately every two weeks.
The most elegant method is probably to let the brackets disappear completely on the inside of the tooth. Initial difficulties getting used to it, for example due to tongue irritation, are much milder today. The lingual technique (lingual = towards the tongue) has developed further, the clear braces have become more delicate and flatter. You will also find that there are many excellent brands that are clear braces alternatives.
Medical reasons for an orthodontic treatment
Orthodontic treatments are also becoming increasingly important for maintaining or restoring the chewing function. The number of adults receiving treatment for malfunctions is increasing significantly. The knowledge about the connections between incorrect jaw loads and a wrong bite, which can lead to disturbances in the whole body, has also grown.
Pretreatment for dentures
Orthodontic treatment is recommended, for example, in the case of problems with the temporomandibular joint , for example due to an incorrect clenching of the upper and lower jaw ( see functional diagnostics ). Orthodontics can also help as a pretreatment for the provision of dentures , for example before placing implants.
Teeth can also be pushed in or out of the tooth socket in order to stimulate the growth of bone tissue — this gives an implant more hold. Cell biology is used here, because the bone cells grow behind the displaced tooth. Overall, the possibilities of orthodontic correction for adults are great and the treatment takes only a little longer than for adolescents.
How to care for clear braces
Many patients should have worn braces in their childhood and adolescence. But for various reasons there was never any orthodontic treatment that would have been necessary in view of the misaligned teeth. Even if you missed orthodontics in childhood, there is nothing to prevent you from having the necessary tooth correction done in adulthood.
With the option of wearing clear braces , you can be treated without worrying about your aesthetic appearance. The advantages of clear braces are versatile and are based, for example, on the fact that you do not have to answer any unpleasant questions at work or in your private life. You should know that the desired effect comes from wearing the clear braces between 20 and 22 hours a day.
In the orthodontic treatment of adolescents and adults, invisible braces offer several advantages. Would you like a radiant smile, straight teeth and a treatment that remains hidden from those around you? Then invisible aligners are an aesthetic and extremely practical solution. The cleaning and care are not time-consuming, provided you observe the following points.
Cleaning and storage
Invisible braces are removable corrective solutions for misaligned teeth. You can take the braces out when eating, but also at important appointments, and feel comfortable and secure in all situations. It is important that you clean your clear braces and your teeth optimally. For daily care, use a soft toothbrush and mild toothpaste.
Once a week, place your invisible braces in a cleaning solution that you get from your orthodontistrecommended for the special care of the plastic. Do not insert the aligner until after you have taken care of your teeth. Even if the perfect dental care is very complex, it serves as the basis for ensuring that your oral cavity is hygienically clean even when wearing the aligner.
What you should absolutely avoid
We advise you to remove your braces when eating or drinking colored drinks. Even if it is a transparent aligner, the colorlessness is not retained if the plastic comes into contact with food and liquids that stain. When enjoying coffee or red wine, a visible layer could form on the clear braces and lead to an embarrassing moment. As a smoker, you should be especially careful.
Nicotine coatings adhere to your clear braces and cannot be removed with special cleaners. The result is a discoloration of the aligner, which counteracts invisible wear and thus has a negative influence on the actual advantages of the transparent braces. Remember that the invisible clips are plastic splints. Plastic can discolour and should therefore never come into contact with staining liquids or food.
If you have opted for clear braces, you will have a dental correction that is invisible to your fellow human beings. If you care for the aligner properly and avoid contact with food and drinks that stain it, you can look forward to straight teeth without visible braces.
The easy-to-use and easily removable clear braces are completely transparent and therefore cannot be seen, even when you are talking or laughing heartily. To ensure that it stays that way, follow the care instructions.