When many patients visit their cosmetic dentist to talk about improving their smile, one of the first things they mention is that they'd like to straighten their teeth. However, they just don't want to get metal braces because they really mar the smile. Fortunately, there are several different options for patients who want to get a straighter smile without that "metal mouth" look. Here's what you need to know about three options for straightening your teeth without anyone knowing about it.
Clear Aligner Systems
There are several different clear aligner systems that can straighten teeth without metal. Options include Invisalign and Clear Correct. This type of teeth straightening is usually recommended for overbite, underbite, and other mild to moderate alignment problems.
These clear aligners are custom made especially for your mouth, and they'll fit perfectly as a result. Every two weeks, you'll dispose of your current set of aligners and begin wearing a new set. With each progressive set, your teeth are moved a bit more until they eventually arrive at their optimal positions. Most patients wear clear aligner systems for around 12-18 months.
Ceramic braces are very similar to metal braces, but the brackets and wires are clear. This type of teeth straightening can be well suited for anyone who needs correction of mild to severe teeth alignment issues. In terms of care, ceramic braces require the same type of maintenance that metal braces do. This includes tightening every six weeks or so.
On average, most patients wear ceramic braces for around the same amount of time that they wear clear aligners -- anywhere from 12 to 18 months. Ceramic braces, whilst clear, aren't quite as unobtrusive as clear aligners.
Lingual braces are made of metal—but the metal is actually on the back side of your teeth. The front of your teeth is completely unmarred whilst the correction is going on. Lingual braces can be well suited for patients who have nearly any type of alignment problems, even more severe teeth misalignment. However, teeth straightening with lingual braces does take longer than straightening with clear aligners or ceramic braces.
On average, treatment with lingual braces may be around two years, but you will often be able to see a noticeable difference in teeth straightness within only a few months since your teeth aren't covered at all. The main potential drawback with lingual braces is that you'll need to floss in a very precise way, so you'll have to devote more time to oral hygiene.
If you think one of these invisible teeth straightening methods might be right for you, contact your cosmetic dentist today to arrange a consultation appointment!