How Do Braces and Aligners Work?

Article by Dr Raha Sepehrara

Your smile says so much about you. But when you’ve got crooked, gappy, or overcrowded teeth the last thing you probably want to do is show them off to the world. 

Fortunately, there are ways to address misalignments. In fact, there has never been so much choice when it comes to orthodontic treatments. You can choose from a range of different brace and aligner options. 

So, what are the differences between the different options? And, how do braces and aligners work?

Here’s a quick rundown of the different teeth straightening options here at Dental Suite. 

What Causes Misaligned Teeth?

Several factors could affect the position of your teeth. One of the most common reasons is the size of your teeth and jaw. Alignment issues relating to jaw development become noticeable while you’re still young. 

If your jaw is too small, your teeth will develop close together. This causes overcrowding. Some of your teeth may twist their position to make way for their neighbours. Conversely, if your jaw is larger, your teeth may be spread out with gaps between them. 

Other causes include thumb sucking while you’re first teeth are developing and beyond, gum disease, and physical trauma. 

How Do Braces and Aligners Work?

Braces and aligners work similarly to correct the position of your teeth. By applying gentle pressure for a prolonged period, the brace or aligner will gradually move your teeth into a more favourable position. 

Typically, treatment times range from six months to over two years, depending on the method used and the severity of the case. 

What Are the Benefits of Teeth Straightening?

One of the main reasons people get their teeth straightened is to have a smile they feel good about. Having misaligned teeth can cause you to feel self-conscious when smiling, laughing, and even talking. Well-aligned teeth help you rebuild that missing confidence. 

But there are more benefits than just aesthetics. Crooked, gappy, and overcrowded teeth are hard to clean. This means bacteria can build up on the hard-to-reach parts of your teeth. Over time, this leads to tooth decay and gum disease. 

The position of your teeth can cause tension across your jaw too. There are several types of bite issues, many of which lead to referred pain in your neck, shoulder, and even your head. Braces and aligners can remedy this and prevent complications in later life. 

What’s the Difference Between Teeth Straightening Treatments?

Essentially, when straightening your teeth, you have the option to have a fixed brace system such as Six Month Smiles, Damon Braces, and Lingual braces, or a removable aligner system like Invisalign, Smilelign, or Inman Aligners. 

With fixed braces, small brackets are attached to the teeth being straightened. A wire is fed through the brackets. Tension across the wire gently moves your teeth over time. With fixed systems, the wire is adjusted throughout treatment to help in the correction process. 

Custom-made aligners are worn on your teeth. They can be plastic or metal. Throughout your treatment, you’ll swap to new different aligners that move your teeth slightly further than the last. Inman Aligners are adjusted frequently. 

Which Treatment Is Right for Me?

Each treatment type has its benefits. Many people like the subtlty and convenience of clear aligners like Invisalign which are removable making it easier to eat and clean your teeth. 

Six Month Smiles provides quick treatment for mild cases. With this option, the brackets and wires are only used on the front teeth. Similarly, Inman Aligners provide a quick removable option. 

Lingual braces sit behind the teeth and are not visible, meaning you get all the benefit with added discretion. The Damon system offers an alternative bracket system that makes adjustments easier. 

Teeth Straightening at Dental Suite

At Dental Suite in Leicester and Loughborough, our highly-skilled dentists will help you decide which orthodontic treatment is right for you based on your lifestyle and needs. 

Call us today to arrange your initial consultation.



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The Dental Suite clinics in Leicester, Loughborough and Nottingham have proudly served the East Midlands for over 20 years and counting. Find your nearest Dental Suite and get in touch to arrange an appointment.

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LE11 2ED