The Different Types of Braces

Deciding to get braces comes with a lot of questions, and one of the most important ones is, “What are the different types of braces?” If you’re getting a head start on your orthodontic research, you’re on the right track, and the Stacy Wolf Orthodontics team is here to tell you everything to know about all the treatment options available to you or your child. Keep reading to learn more!

Benefits for All Ages

At Stacy Wolf Orthodontics, we believe everyone deserves the confidence of a beautiful smile, no matter their age. Our braces treatments are available to kids, teens, and adults alike. Whether you’re seven or seventy-two, we’ll do our best to pair you with the right treatment for your unique needs when you visit our office. 

Teens: The majority of orthodontic patients start treatment in their teens. During a patient’s teen years, most of their adult teeth have grown in, but their mouths are still adaptable, making this the perfect time for treatment. After Dr. Wolf assesses their smile and decides they need orthodontic treatment, we’ll move forward. Depending on their orthodontic need, they may choose a fixed or removable appliance to straighten their smile. 

Kids: The American Association of Orthodontists recommends that children make their first orthodontic appointment by age seven. During this time, we’ll assess their smile to determine if they need early intervention treatment to give them a jump start on a straight smile. Not everyone needs early intervention, but monitoring your child’s growth from an early age will help Dr. Wolf determine the best time for them to start treatment later in their life. 

Adults: You may be surprised to learn that as many as one in four of Dr. Wolf’s patients is over eighteen! Some adult patients wore braces years ago and forgot to wear their retainers. Some have wanted to get braces for a while but waited for more modern treatments to become available. No matter your story, it’s never too late to get the smile you deserve. 

The Different Types of Braces

Metal Braces

In the past, metal braces may have been awkward and obvious, but modern metal braces are much smaller, more discreet, and more comfortable than ever before. Using a system of brackets and wires, Dr. Wolf straightens your teeth by adjusting the connective wire over time.  These adjustments typically occur every eight weeks and help shift your teeth in line for the perfect smile. 

They’re a cost-effective option because they don’t require some of the more complex technology or expensive equipment that newer treatments do. The strength, durability, and affordability of traditional metal braces make them one of our most popular treatment options year after year. 

Metal braces are great at fixing complex tooth issues. They work faster at closing gaps and aligning teeth than other treatments, potentially shortening treatment time. Treatment time depends on the severity of your condition but typically ranges from 18-30 months. 

Clear Braces

Clear braces are also called ceramic braces or aesthetic braces, and they work in the same way as metal braces. Designed to provide patients with a more subtle treatment option, clear braces use white brackets that blend in with your teeth for a less noticeable effect. 

Many of our patients choose clear braces over traditional metal braces because they provide the best of both worlds. Clear braces are both a durable treatment plan that works for all orthodontic conditions and a more aesthetic option that keeps treatment discrete. Clear braces are an excellent choice for older teens or adults. 

Clear Aligners

Straightening your teeth with clear aligners can be a great option if you want the least noticeable treatment. Using a series of customized clear aligner trays, our clear aligners straighten your smile without the bulky brackets and wires of traditional metal or clear braces. 

As our most flexible treatment option, clear aligners allow you to straighten your teeth without changing your diet or oral hygiene routine like you would have to with metal braces. We offer this treatment plan for children, teens, and adults alike. 

Fixed or Removable: What’s the difference? 

Two types of orthodontic appliances are available to you: fixed and removable. Each type comes with its pros and cons, and you’ll work with Dr. Wolf to determine which appliance is best for your smile goals. 

Fixed appliances, like clear and metal braces, are attached to your teeth and cannot be removed until your treatment is complete. Removable appliances like clear aligners are worn for 20-22 hours daily and can be removed easily for meals, sports, or brushing your teeth. 

Aside from the obvious differences, clear, removable aligners are best for treating mild to moderate orthodontic problems. Dr. Wolf usually recommends fixed appliances for more severe and comprehensive issues.

The Different Types of Braces

Get the Treatment You Deserve at Stacy Wolf Orthodontics

At Stacy Wolf Orthodontics, your smile is our passion. With a wide range of available treatment plans for every need, you’ll find your confidence in Dr. Wolf’s Bayside office in no time. Schedule your free consultation today to get started!