Types of Braces in Apple Valley, MN
Orthodontic treatment can take many forms. At Carousel Pediatric Dentistry & Orthodontics, our goal is to provide the best option for your child's unique needs. To accomplish this goal, we offer metal braces, clear braces, and Invisalign® clear aligners, and our team can supply the answers you need to make an informed decision.
Conventional Metal Braces
This option is what most people picture when they think of braces, though modern metal orthodontics are lighter and less bulky than their traditional relatives. They work through a system of stainless-steel brackets which your orthodontist attaches to each tooth and then links together with thin wires. By manipulating these wires, Dr. Katie can shift your teeth into their new positions.
Metal braces sometimes require small elastic bands called o-rings which adjust the connection between the brackets and wires. For families who children with more complex orthodontic needs, metal braces have a wider range of effectiveness. However, most people agree that this is the least attractive option. Some patients will also benefit from an extra appliance, such as an expander and braces.
Similar to conventional braces, this option replaces the stainless steel with high-grade ceramic brackets, the most visible part of the system. This ceramic material is tooth-colored, so the only visible parts are the wires.
At-home care is more complicated with metal and ceramic braces because you need to brush and floss around the wires and brackets, ensuring you dislodge stubborn food particles stuck in between the pieces. In addition, ceramic braces may use larger brackets which are less durable than metal. This means you should take extra care with ceramic braces to avoid damage.
Invisalign® Clear Aligners
Clear aligners represent a different approach to teeth alignment where the course of treatment is digitally planned so that you wear a series of custom aligner trays, each one designed to gently manipulate your teeth into the smile you and Dr. Katie envisioned during planning. While this approach is most appropriate for mild to medium levels of complexity, it has improved significantly year over year, offering numerous advantages:
- Discretion – Clear aligners fit so well that they virtually disappear when you're wearing them. This means few people will notice them, which are much more popular with teens and adolescents.
- Removability – Unlike conventional braces, aligners can come out for you to eat, drink, brush and floss. You can keep your teeth and gums cleaner when not having to work around brackets and wires.
- Comfort – Your Invisalign aligners are made from special polymers with a precise fit that prevents rubbing and irritation. As a result, the trays will never cut the inside of your lips and cheeks the way metal brackets can, especially when something impacts your child's mouth.
Which Option Is the Best Choice for Your Child?
Dr. Katie will consider every aspect of your child's needs, personality, and oral health before recommending any orthodontic treatment option. We can treat particular bite or alignment problems better with braces rather than Invisalign treatment, and vice versa! Dr. Katie will create a customized plan specific to your child's unique needs. Since no two patients are alike, no two orthodontic plans should be the same! Our goal at Carousel Pediatric Dentistry & Orthodontics is to provide your child with a beautiful smile and functional bite to last a lifetime.
Orthodontic appliances will also vary depending on your child's readiness for a certain phase of treatment. Young patients who require interceptive orthodontic treatment may also need an expander and partial braces, whereas teenage patients undergoing comprehensive treatment typically have braces on each of their permanent teeth.
Call us today to schedule your child's complimentary orthodontic exam and discuss which treatment option is best for your child!