What if there was a solution for straightening teeth that went beyond traditional braces. 4.5 million people currently wear braces (or some other appliance) in the United States with the goal of straightening a smile. There are now many different options available in the pursuit of a straight smile. Lingual braces, or braces placed behind the teeth, are a more recent form of orthodontic work that is popular among people who are self conscious about the look of braces.
What are Lingual Braces?
Traditional and lingual braces are similar in many ways but have some key differences. While traditional braces are placed on the front of the teeth, lingual braces are placed on the back, behind the tongue and palate. The main advantage of lingual braces is their discreet appearance. Because the brackets and wires are hidden behind the teeth, so they are not visible when you smile or speak. This can be especially appealing for individuals concerned about the appearance of traditional braces, such as adults or professionals.
How do Lingual Braces work?
The lingual braces process is simple. We will take impressions of your teeth after a complimentary consultation, which are then sent to a dental laboratory to create custom brackets. Six weeks is the duration between sending the impressions and receiving the custom brackets. A special method is used for your cosmetic orthodontist to cement the braces to the backs of the teeth. Lingual braces work in the same manner as traditional braces in that they apply gentle yet continuous pressure to help the teeth shift into the proper position. Depending on the severity of the existing dental situation, treatment can take anywhere from 18-36 months.
Are Lingual Braces right for you?
There are many reasons why someone might want to pursue lingual braces. The most common reasons include people wanting to maintain a professional look while still straightening their teeth. If you are concerned about the appearance of braces, Lingual Braces could be a perfect option for you. Traditional braces can occasionally interfere with the ability to play certain wind instruments, so some musicians may opt for Lingual Braces. Athletes, as well, will find that lingual braces are a safer choice in sports.
Lingual braces, with many upsides, still are not suitable for everyone. People with normal sized teeth, both teens and adults, and the best candidates. During a complimentary consultation we can determine the best course of action for your specific dental situation. Because they have smaller teeth, children usually cannot accommodate the braces and so are not good candidates for lingual braces. Bite problems, also, are better fixed with traditional braces.
What makes Lingual Braces Different from Traditional Braces?
Lingual braces are different from traditional braces in many ways beyond appearance. Because the brackets are custom made, they can often end up costing more than traditional braces. During our complimentary consultation we can walk through the difference in price for you.
Lingual braces are placed close to the tongue, so you may experience some difficulty with some daily habits and speaking the first few weeks after having the lingual device applied. After the initial month of lingual braces, your eating and speech patterns should return to baseline.
Cleaning your teeth with Lingual Braces
No matter what type of braces you choose, keeping your teeth clean is important. Tooth decay can come from food getting stuck in the brackets and wires of your lingual braces which can cause plaque to form. Brushing your teeth after every meal is essential. Brushing above and below the brackets of your braces and at the gumline will ensure a healthy smile. Lingua braces are attached to the backs of the teeth, so special care should be taken to always clean that area well. One tip that can make brushing easier is using a toothbrush with a narrow tip to gain easier access to the backs of the teeth.
The advantage of lingual braces is aesthetic. If your teeth need minimal straightening as a teen or adult, and you are reluctant to embrace the look of traditional braces, Lingual Braces could be for you. You can have a gorgeous straight smile and go about your daily business without anyone realizing you have braces!