Ceramic Braces

COSTS OF CERAMIC-BRACES AND HOW TO KNOW THEY ARE RIGHT FOR YOU

Having a straighter set of teeth is the dream of everyone, but not everyone is comfortable with using braces especially the very obvious ones made of metal. Ceramic-braces have become a very common choice because of its discreetness and effectiveness. Clear aligners are also a great choice for those who want their teeth straightening process to be less noticeable.

Here, we will be explaining the difference between the fixed ceramic-braces and the other types of braces, the available options in the UK and their possible costs. We strongly believe you will find all the information you have been searching for to choose the right type of brace.

WHAT ARE CERAMIC BRACES?

Ceramic-braces are the transparent version of the traditional metal braces. They are made from clear or white materials;hence, they are less noticed when worn.

Fixed ceramic-braces have brackets made to connect with each tooth and an archwire attached to help the brackets stay on the teeth. These brackets are clear or white, and sometimes, the archwireis also made to be tooth-coloured. Using elastic bands, the wire is held in place,and they are also called ligatures - they are usually made with the colour of the brackets.

Orthodontic treatments usually require check-ups every 6-8 weeks. This regular visit is what helps the orthodontist to check for the progress of the treatment and to make necessary adjustments to the wire in order for the teeth to move to the desired direction. The treatment usually takes about 18-24 months to be completed. The exact duration depends on the type of misalignment being treated.

The use of these braces usually causes a little sore on the teeth for a few days after they have been installed or tightened. Aside these two periods, there is usually very little or no discomfort attached toits use.

There are ceramic-braces that are designed to adjust and tighten the wire on their own. These braces use self-ligating technology. The self-ligating technology allows the process of treatment to go smoothly and the frequency of check-ups to be reduced. Braces of this kind do not need ligatures since the wire is clasped by the brackets themselves.

There are many benefits of fixed ceramic-braces. Some of them are:

  • They are suitable for both the adults and teenagers.
  • They are a discreet option for teeth straightening.
  • They can be used to treat a wide range of orthodontic problems even severe malocclusion.
  • The ceramic material used are of great strength hence, they do not break or chip easily.

The major reason people undergo orthodontic treatment is because they are self-conscious of their misaligned teeth. Apart from this reason, people can also opt for orthodontic treatment because well-arranged teeth can be easily cleaned. We advise people to invest in getting their teeth well aligned with braces as an investment in braces is an investment in your teeth for a better future.

DIFFERENCES BETWEEN CERAMIC-BRACES AND METAL BRACES

Most ceramic-braces are designed the same way as the metal braces. This means that their functionality and results are most likely the same. The major difference between the ceramic-braces and the metal braces is the material used in their production. The ceramic-braces are made from clear or tooth-coloured ceramics. This makes the braces blend evenly with the teeth making it less possible for them to be noticed from a distance.

In the UK, about 75% of the orthodontic centres offer patients a choice of ceramic or metal braces.

Though the ceramic-braces can be noticed when a closer look is taken, people still feel more confident wearing them than wearing the very conspicuous metal braces. The ceramic-braces have been widely chosen by adults because of their ability to fit into the official system and by kids and teenagers who have always been so concerned about avoiding the “metal mouth” taunts while playing.

The cost of the ceramic-braces is virtually higher than the metal counterpart —this is majorly because of the advanced materials used in making them.

The users of ceramic-braces usually face a little restriction on their choices of food and drinks so that their braces and ligatures may not get stained. Apart from this, there are usually no disadvantages attached to the use of ceramic-braces.

COMBING THE CERAMIC AND METAL BRACES

The ceramic and metal braces can be used together for treatment because of reasons of finance. The metal braces are not as expensive as the ceramic-braces hence patients who cannot afford the ceramic-braces for both their upper and lower teeth can choose to use the ceramic-braces on the upper teeth and the metal braces on the lower teeth (because the lower teeth are usually less noticed when we smile).

If you have a deep bite, your orthodontist may decide not to fix a ceramic brace on your bottom jaw for some reasons. The metal braces usually work better because the ceramic materials are stronger than the teeth and they can make the teeth chip if knocked against the brackets attached to the lower jaw.

It is important to note that braces of all types usually demand special attention when cleaning is concerned. The best tools and techniques for cleaning will be given to you by your dentist so that you can remove the leftover particles of food and bacteria from the trickiest places.

OTHER CHOICES AVAILABLE APART FROM CERAMIC-BRACES

INVISALIGN BRACES

There are people who still need a more discreet means of aligning their teeth. This brings us to the Invisalign braces which are more invisible than the usual ceramic-braces. The Invisalign uses a distinct system which consists of a set of clear transparent aligners made from plastics which fit firmly over the teeth.

These braces are usually a great alternative to the ceramic-braces because compared to the ceramic-braces, they are almost invisible to the casual observer; again, it can be easily removed. However, for the desired result to be obtained from Invisalign, they must be worn for at least 22 hours a day.

The Invisalign clear aligners can be used for the treatment of up to 90% of orthodontic problems. They can be used by people of all classes as their price is usually the same or lesser than those of the ceramic-braces.

LINGUAL BRACES

Aside from the Invisalign, you can also go for the lingual braces which are designed to be used at the back part of the teeth, thereby making them very hard to be detected. They are also customised to suit the need of each patient so that accurate results can always be obtained.

The lingual braces are very effective, but they have a little disadvantage. This is that they are expensive and cannot be afforded many.

TYPES OF CERAMIC-BRACES

CLEAR CERAMIC-BRACES

The clear braces are made from two materials: the polycarbonate (plastic) or ceramic. The clear ceramic-braces are usually stain-resistant and durable than the polycarbonate because of the compound of aluminium being used in producing it.

The clear ceramic-braces are suitable for people with naturally white teeth. This is because the transparent material becomes almost impossible to notice when placed on the surface of the teeth.

The clear ceramic-braces usually stay clear for long and cannot be easily stained though the ligatures may be. The ligatures are usually changed during check-ups, so this should not be a challenge. These stains can be prevented if you monitor the types of food and drink you take.

Read on to find out how you can avoid stains from your clear ceramic braces.

WHITE CERAMIC-BRACES

These braces, though called white are usually designed to suit the colour of your teeth — pure white braces will attract more attention thereby making the aim of discretion to be defeated because the natural teeth are usually a bit yellow. This type of braces fits perfectly for teeth that have a darker shade.

The whitish colour of the brackets of these braces is made from a different aluminium compound. There are various brands of these braces, and they are also customised to fit the shade of an individual patient.

The brackets of these braces do not easily get stained but their elastic bands might. This is just similar to that of the clear braces.

COLOURED CERAMIC-BRACES

Ceramic-braces are mostly chosen by people so they can go through their treatment without having many people noticing and asking questions, but this does not mean that there are others who would not want to spice up their looks with braces which have coloured ligatures. Like the coloured metal braces, one can choose the colour of their elastic band and get their braces personalised.

There are a lot of chances to change the colours of your ligatures as the ligatures are usually changed during every check-up.

THE BRANDS OF CERAMIC-BRACES AVAILABLE IN THE UK

There are different brands of ceramic-braces in the UK, and different dentists work with different brands for some reasons, which may include price, quality, comfort, availability, etc.

The following are the brands of clear braces you can find in the UK.

  • Damon Clear
  • Radiance Plus
  • Clarity (ADVANCED and SL)
  • InVu

Some orthodontists may offer either one or two of these brands, so if your orthodontist does not provide the brand you are set on choosing, try another dental clinic.

Here is a summarised information on the different types of ceramic-braces in the UK.

DAMON CLEAR

The Damon clear braces are a very special type of braces because they use the self-ligating system thereby taking away the need for an elastic band - this means that there will be no ligatures to be stained. These braces are found to be more comfortable by patients as their teeth are always under constant pressure moving to the desired direction. They say they do not need to wait to undergo any form of soreness that occurs when the other braces get tightened in stages.

This system reduces the number of check-ups needed for a patient. This has made it a very popular choice for patients whorequire a faster result without having their schedules altered.

RADIANCE PLUS

The Radiance braces originated from the American orthodontists. They are made from sapphire, the second strongest thing after diamond hence, they are very strong. They have a glass-like appearance, and according to many dentists, they are the clearest type of braces available. Because of the materials used in producing it, they are one of the most expensive braces in the market.

CLARITY

These braces have tooth-coloured brackets which are translucent and specially designed to be removed easily after the completion of treatment. They are of the standard type and the self-ligating type.

InVu

These braces are tooth-coloured and are also produced to match the colour of the patient's teeth. Their wires are metals coated with Teflon to look like the colour of the teeth. This coating can be chipped or scratched, thereby showing the metal underneath.

THE COST OF CERAMIC-BRACES

Ceramic-braces in the UK usually require payment, whether as a teen or an adult. If you feel you cannot afford the ceramic-braces, you can always go for the metal braces which are provided on the NHS for adults with clinical needs and those under 18 years of age.

The cost of these braces usually depends on the orthodontist and the duration of the treatment because every orthodontist has the freedom to charge at the rate theyare comfortable with. The following is an estimate of the price of the ceramic-braces in the UK:

Type of braces

Cost per arch

Self-ligating

Material

Damon Clear

£1,500-2,750

Yes

Clear

Radiance plus

£1,800-4,000

No

Clear

Clarity ADVANCED

£1,700-3,500

No

Translucent tooth-colour

Clarity SL

£1,900-3,700

Yes

Translucent tooth-colour

InVu

1,800-3,200

No

Matches the colour of the patient’s teeth

The prices above are just estimates. You should speak to more than two dentists before making your final decision on the appliance to use for your treatment.

COPING WITH CERAMIC-BRACES

Most ceramic-braces users report that they are generally less self-aware about the use of clear braces.

Though these braces are still visible to some extent, people still do not notice them easily when worn except they take a longer look at the wearer’s mouth. This makes it a better option than the metal braces which can be spotted from a distance.

CAN THE CERAMIC BRACES BE STAINED?

Some ceramic-braces can stain depending on the materials they are made from though they are some that are designed to be stain-resistant. Despite the stain-resistant materials used in the production of some of these braces, their ligatures still stand a chance of being stained if the wrong kind of food or drink is taken.

To avoid getting your braces stained, you may need to avoid the following kind of foods and drinks.

  • Tea and coffee.
  • Cola and dark fizzy drinks.
  • Red wine.
  • Tomatoes and sauces made from them.
  • Sweets with bright colours.
  • Soy sauce.
  • Balsamic vinegar.
  • Berries like raspberries, blackberries and blueberries.

Other foods may be added to the list by your orthodontist to enable you complete your treatment without having to go about with stained brackets or ligatures.

Smoking can also cause braces to get stained alongside the other issues with oral health it causes. If you are a smoker, it is strongly advised that you quit this habit.

In case you notice discolouration on your ligatures, you do not have to worry as the longest time you can carry a ligature is for a few weeks after which it will be changed.

If you prefer the use of the self-ligating braces, you do not have to worry about the stains as your orthodontist will give you all the advice you need on cleaning and the prevention of stains.

WHITENING THE TEETH

If you are straightening your teeth and you have been dreaming of a more beautiful smile, whitening the teeth may be your next option. However, it is very important for you to wait for your treatment with braces to be completed before moving on to use any whitening agent as you may end up with spots due to the inability of the bleaching agents to reach the areas bonded to the brackets.

Also, we advise that you do not use any whitening toothpaste until you have completed your treatment with braces.

MAKING A CHOICE

Choosing between the metal and ceramic-braces will be highly dependent on your aesthetics and budget because they all work the same way and produce the same results. The Invisalign braces are still available in case you want to try them out. They provide great results with the most invisible aligners. Despite the invisibility of these aligners, the cost is still comparable or lesser than those of the ceramic-braces.

For more information on suitable teeth straightening options, you can reach out to our dentists and orthodontists today.