Orthodontic braces can help straighten and align teeth to reveal the smile of your dreams, but there is one drawback that can be a considerable deterrent for many people: the aesthetics. For those who wish to align their teeth with braces without compromising the look of their smile, lingual braces are an excellent option. Continue reading to learn more.
What are Lingual Braces?
Lingual braces are basically the same as traditional braces, but rather than being fixed on the outside (buccal) surface of the teeth, they are fixed on the inside (lingual) surface, making them almost impossible to detect.
Lingual braces function just like buccal braces; custom-made brackets are placed on each of the teeth and fastened together with a wire. The system works slowly over time by applying continuous pressure to correct the spacing and alignment of the teeth.
For many people, the physical appearance of traditional braces can be a source of embarrassment. This can lead to immense stress for the patient, especially when social situations or special life events are concerned.
Because lingual braces are fixed to the inside of the teeth, no one will be able to tell that you have braces unless you make a point to show them. This can be a huge breath of relief for many people who would otherwise experience considerable stress and embarrassment from the look of their smile. Lingual braces can be especially beneficial for self-conscious teenagers, athletes, musicians who play wind instruments, and career-focused adults.
Things to Consider
While there are many incredible advantages to lingual braces, there are some things to consider before pursuing this method of orthodontic treatment:
- Speech: Though we may not realize it, our tongue makes contact with the back of our teeth while we speak. The placement of lingual braces may cause a bit of obstruction, which has the potential to cause a lisp or whistling sound. To combat this, many patients read aloud or practice their speech to help their tongue adjust to the changes in the mouth.
- Price: Because of the convenience and aesthetic benefits of lingual braces, this method of treatment tends to be a bit pricier than traditional braces. The exact price of your treatment will depend upon the correction that is needed, your dental insurance coverage, and where you live.
- Adjustment Period: Your tongue is accustomed to the smooth texture of the back of your teeth. When your lingual braces are first placed, you may experience some soreness on your tongue until the lingual tissues toughen up and become accustomed to the new addition inside the mouth. During this adjustment period, it is recommended to do warm salt water rinses to keep the area clean and free of infection. In some cases, your orthodontist may advise placing a bit of dental wax over the brackets to help avoid painful contact.
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Am I a Candidate for Lingual Braces?
The best way to determine your candidacy for lingual braces is to undergo a professional consultation with your trusted orthodontist.
He or she will examine your teeth and create a plan for aligning your smile. In most cases, most alignment issues that are corrected with traditional braces can be corrected with lingual braces, as well, though there are a few exceptions.
Patients with a deep overbite may not be ideal candidates for lingual braces; a severe overbite may place too much pressure on the brackets, which can cause them to become loose or fall off quite easily. This can be counter-productive for your orthodontic treatment. If your orthodontist conducts your evaluation and determines that you may not be an ideal candidate for lingual braces, he or she will work with you to determine the best treatment method for you.
CaliSmile Orthodontics: Best Orthodontist in Encino and West Hills, CA
For the best orthodontic treatment in Los Angeles County, trust in CaliSmile Orthodontics.
Dr. Amir Dehghan has over 17 years of experience practicing both cosmetic and orthodontic dentistry. He will work with you to achieve the smile of your dreams.
CaliSmile Orthodontics has locations in both Encino and West Hills, California. We offer both traditional fixed orthodontic treatment and Invisalign.
For a free orthodontic consultation in one of our Los Angeles County dental offices, give us a call anytime at 310-710-6527 or fill out our online appointment request form.