Planning to Get Braces? Here Are a Few Things You Should Know

If crooked teeth and an awkward bite are making you insecure about your smile, braces can improve both the aesthetics of your grin and your overall oral health. Today’s braces are nothing like the large, obtrusive brackets and wires of the past, and orthodontists can create a treatment plan that can work for anyone. If you’re planning to visit an orthodontist in Park Ridge to see if braces are right for you, here are a few things you should know before your appointment.

Getting braces doesn’t have to mean getting brackets and wires.

If you decide you want orthodontic treatment, traditional braces with brackets and wires aren’t your only choice. Invisalign provides the same results as braces for many patients but relies on clear, removable aligner trays to shift the teeth. They’re virtually invisible, so most people won’t even know you’re getting orthodontic care. If you do get more traditional braces, today’s brackets and wires are much smaller and less noticeable than in the past. Self-ligating braces are similar to traditional braces, but they don’t require elastics and require less frequent tightening. Orthodontists work closely with patients to choose the treatment method that will help them reach their goals the best.

You may need to learn a new way to care for your teeth.

If you get Invisalign, you’ll remove your aligners to brush and floss your teeth as normal. However, if you have brackets and wires, your orthodontist will teach you a new way to maintain your oral hygiene. You may need to use a proxabrush to get underneath the wires and a floss threader to clean between your teeth. The extra effort will be worth it, so you aren’t left with discoloration and decay on your newly straightened teeth when your braces are removed.

Treatment times can vary.

Generally, orthodontic treatment can be completed much faster than in the past, but the length of each treatment plan depends on the patient. Your orthodontist will map out a plan for you on your first visit, so you can see how long you will need braces and how often you will need checkups during your treatment, so you know exactly what to expect.

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