The Most Commonly Asked Questions About Tooth Braces

There are lots of questions about tooth braces and their usage. You can find the answer to the most commonly asked questions below:

Q: Are Braces just for Children?

A: This is no longer the case. The American Association of Orthodontics says that roughly 20% of people who wear braces are over the age of 21. Not wearing braces to straighten your teeth as a kid does no rule you out of doing so when you reach your adult years.

Q: Why are Braces Needed?

A: The simple answer is that they will straighten your teeth, which will make them more aesthetically pleasing and easier to clean. It can be particularly tough to keep crooked teeth properly cleaned, and when that happens, gum and dental diseases become more common. Wearing braces can allow you to have healthier teeth and gums in the long term.

Q: Will the Braces Create a Mouth Full of Metal?

A: Your dentist will examine your teeth and make a decision that works best for your specific situation. Sometimes that will mean using metal braces, although some are smaller and less obtrusive than the older versions. There are also braces that are clear or tooth-colored, although you can get a little flashy by getting the rubber connectors in a variety of different colors.

Q: How do Metal Braces Actually Work?

A: The braces apply pressure to the teeth to move them. The braces are comprised of a series of small brackets that are cemented to the teeth. They are all connected by rubber bands or wire, the latter of which can be tightened to help the dentist achieve the desired goal. Brackets are usually metal or tooth colored.

Q: What are “Invisible” Braces, and How do They Work?

A: These types of braces are also referred to as aligners, and are made from a clear plastic material that you wear over your teeth. Invisible braces work to straighten the teeth, and are usually worn for a month or less at a time. The braces are replaced with a new set to create a gradual change that fits your personal treatment plan.

Q: How Long are Braces Kept in Place?

A: There is no set amount of time, as it depends on the condition of your teeth. Your orthodontist will discuss the length of time with you, but on average, you can expect to have braces for 2 years.

While this may seem like a long time, there really is no quicker way to straighten teeth. The movement needs to be done gradually, as going too fast could lead to teeth becoming broken or the bones breaking down.

Q: Is it Difficult to Clean your Teeth when Wearing Braces?

A: Food can very easily get stuck in your braces, so you really need to go to great lengths to keep your teeth clean. If you don’t commit to a regular cleaning schedule, you run the risk of getting cavities, which could affect the effectiveness of the braces. Making a couple of extra visits to the dentist’s office for check-ups should help ensure that your teeth stay clean.