Unlocking the Secrets of Self-Ligating Braces: The Modern Solution for a Straighter Smile

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Braces serve to adjust the positioning of your teeth and jaw, often recommended by dental professionals for aligning crooked teeth, modifying spacing, or correcting a bad bite.

The importance of brackets:

Brackets, attached to teeth, support a thin archwire gradually adjusted to apply force, moving teeth into the desired position. The archwire’s effective placement in the brackets is crucial for braces to work efficiently. Orthodontists spend years studying which location each bracket needs to be on each tooth to achieve the perfect smile. Your face actually has 14 bones that make it up and 43 muscles, so knowing how the facial and jaw anatomy is vital when moving teeth around.

The difference between traditional braces and self-ligating braces:

Traditional braces employ elastic bands or metal ties for this purpose while self-ligating braces feature a system integrated into the bracket itself, eliminating the need for elastic ties. This article explores self-ligating braces and discusses their potential pros and cons.

Unlike traditional braces with elastic ties, self-ligating braces utilize brackets to secure wires, ensuring constant activity and quicker tooth movement. Traditional braces require tightening with elastic ties every 4 to 6 weeks, whereas self-ligating braces don’t require elastic ties at all. Your orthodontist will change the wire around every 6-8 weeks.

Are self-litigating braces better than traditional braces? 

In the self-ligating vs. traditional braces debate, self-ligating braces use a built-in system referred to as self-ligating brackets, different from traditional braces using tiny elastic bands or metal ties called ligatures. These brackets are much more modern and utilize modern technology that can apply more torque on each tooth, allowing for better results. Many orthodontists are noticing that they can treat much more complex cases with self-litigating brackets, while also seeing better final outcomes.

Two types of self-ligating brackets exist: active and passive, each employing a door-like mechanism to close over the bracket. Active brackets use a sliding spring clip mechanism for active force, while passive brackets use a simple sliding mechanism without pressing on the archwire. Because these brackets can slide on the wire, it allows more space to be applied and some doctors have found that they can move the teeth quicker since they have less resistance.

Periodic adjustments remain necessary for self-ligating braces, similar to traditional braces, where the orthodontist assesses progress and adjusts or replaces the archwire to modify force for gradual teeth movement.

Do self-ligating braces or traditional braces hurt more?

Discomfort, common with both types of braces, may be less with self-ligating braces if proper oral hygiene is maintained. Studies suggest less reported pain in people with self-ligating braces compared to traditional braces.

Potential benefits of self-ligating braces include shorter orthodontist visits, easier cleaning due to the absence of ligatures, and oftentimes less discomfort. If a patient invests in a Sonicare toothbrush and a water pick, cleaning their braces has never been easier.

Cost-wise, self-ligating braces are generally more expensive due to advanced technology. Factors like correction needed and treatment length contribute to costs, varying between orthodontists. Payment plans and dental insurance may offer affordability options. Give us a call today to discuss our treatment options! We only use the newest best quality braces, so rest assured you will be in good hands. Our team at All Kids Dental Pediatrics and Orthodontics offers free consultations, so even if you just want some more questions answered don’t hesitate to make an appointment!

Other treatment options: 

At All Kids Dental, we offer Invisalign® treatment as well, which might be a better solution to your needs! Click the link below to learn more.

Invisalign Home Page

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Rifle, Colorado, 81650


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Eagle, Colorado, 81631


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Aspen, Colorado, 81611


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