When it comes to choosing the right orthodontic treatment for you, there are many different options! We want you to be as informed as possible when you are making your choice. While everyone’s situation is different, and your orthodontist will speak to you directly about your own individual needs during your consultation, we wanted to answer some of our most frequently asked questions about ceramic braces to help you prepare.
WHAT ARE CERAMIC BRACES MADE OUT OF?
Structurally speaking, ceramic braces are very similar to traditional metal braces. Both types of braces consist of a system of brackets and archwires that work to move teeth into place, they are just made out of different materials. While metal braces are made of steel, clear braces are made out of a transparent ceramic material that blends in to the natural color of your teeth more than metal braces do. The wires and rubber bands required in ceramic braces are usually made of clear or tooth colored materials for maximum invisibility.
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF CERAMIC BRACES?
The biggest appeal that ceramic braces offer is their minimal visibility. Because they are tooth-colored, they are much less visually obvious than metal braces would be. Many adults who are concerned about their appearance in the workplace or dating scene choose ceramic braces for this reason.
WHAT ARE THE DOWNSIDES OF CERAMIC BRACES?
Just like every orthodontic option, there are some things to be cautious about if you choose ceramic braces. Because they are not made out of steel, ceramic braces are much more fragile than traditional metal braces. You’ll need to be extra careful about what you eat, as well as wearing protective mouth gear while playing sports. Some patients have to visit their orthodontist more often than they would with traditional metal braces because their ceramic braces get damaged. Another common challenge that patients experience is staining. Because ceramic braces are very light in color, it is much easier for them to become discolored from food or poor oral hygiene. However, your orthodontist will help you understand your braces, and make a plan to combat these challenges.
HOW LONG WILL I NEED TO WEAR MY CERAMIC BRACES?
While every patient’s needs and treatment plan will be different, ceramic braces generally take a little bit longer than traditional metal braces would. This is because their fragility often means that the teeth need to be adjusted at a slower pace than metal braces. When you meet with your orthodontist for your consultation, they will discuss your different treatment options with you, including estimated timelines.
WHAT ISSUES CAN CERAMIC BRACES ADDRESS?
Different alignment issues call for different treatment plans. Ceramic braces cannot efficiently address some issues, such as severe overcrowding, as well as other options like traditional metal braces can. If your orthodontist can see that ceramic braces may not be the best option for addressing your concerns, they will advise against ceramic braces for your specific treatment plan. It is important to trust your orthodontist’s evaluation, as they are a highly trained professional who will prioritize your health, safety, and treatment success. Your orthodontist wants to help you make the best decision for your own journey to the perfect smile!
WILL I NEED TO CHANGE MY DIET WHILE I HAVE CERAMIC BRACES?
Every orthodontic treatment option requires some dietary adjustments to keep your braces or aligners in good, clean, condition and minimize damage. Ceramic braces come with many of the same dietary restrictions as metal braces, but even more care is encouraged because ceramic braces are more delicate. This means that you’ll need to be very careful about what you eat. You’ll want to avoid biting and tearing actions by cutting your food into small, bite sized pieces. This applies to foods like pizza, sandwiches, burgers, and other foods that you would typically eat with your hands. You should also avoid chewy and crunchy foods that may cause damage to your braces.
HOW CAN I TAKE CARE OF MY CERAMIC BRACES?
Just as with metal braces, orthodontists recommend that patients brush and floss their teeth after every meal. If you have clear ceramic braces, you will want to brush your teeth as soon as possible after eating in order to minimize the risk of staining, which can be caused by food particles that have been left in your braces for too long. You will want to clean your braces after smaller snacks too, even if all you have time for is a quick rinse. Anything you can do to reduce the risk of your ceramic braces becoming stained or discolored is worth the effort!
We sincerely hope that this guide will help you make an informed decision about your orthodontic care. If you’re ready to start your treatment, schedule a free consultation with us today!