Having braces is an effective way of straightening out misaligned teeth. There are two different types of braces you can have: metal and Invisalign. Metal braces are the conventional and most common brace out there. They consist of metal brackets and studs that work together to pull the teeth into alignment. 

Invisalign are braces that take the form of transparent plastic moulding that fits snuggly around the teeth. They can be removed, unlike metal braces. However, they need to be worn as regularly as possible. Although you will need to keep having new moulds taken throughout the process. 

Both types of orthodontic treatment are as effective as the other. So it really depends on the budget you have. No matter which type of brace you choose, however, there are multiple things that you should think about before committing to orthodontic treatment. Here are 8 things you should consider before having braces:

1. It could give you a temporary lisp

It is not uncommon for metal braces to give the wearer a minor lisp. Metal braces can be bulky. So it is not surprising that it affects the way people speak as a result of wearing them. Where there is not anything you can do to stop that from happening, you may find that you simply get used to it.

2. You will need to use lip balm on a more regular basis

Braces can cause the lips to protrude slightly, which can make the lips feel sore and dry. You might find that metal braces rub on the lips, making them even more cracked and damaged. As a result, most people who have braces will rely heavily on lip balms to keep the lips hydrated and protected. However, you can purchase wax to apply to the areas of the metal braces that are causing discomfort.

3. Application of braces could be uncomfortable

This is not always the case with Invisalign braces. The only discomfort you may feel with Invisalign braces would be having the moulds made of your teeth (it can cause gagging). However, with metal braces, the process is far more involved. This is because the metal studs need to be applied to the surface of each tooth. In addition, metal brackets also need to be added. 

Depending on your teeth, these brackets and studs may need to be fitted quite far back into the mouth. You could find yourself in the dentist chair for a while, although it is not for any significant amount of time. There are some cases where you might need to go to the dentist twice to have braces fitted: the first time for the top of the mouth and the second time for the bottom of the mouth. Discuss your treatment with your dentist if you have any concerns or questions.

4. Your teeth may ache for the first few weeks

After having your braces fitted, whether you opt for metal braces or Invisalign braces, you should expect your teeth to ache for a few weeks after application. This is because your teeth are starting to be pulled into alignment. It is often uncomfortable when you first have them fitted to your teeth. 

Going forward, having braces tightened can have the same effect. But you will be better equipped to deal with that initial discomfort. The same goes for when you are given new moulds for Invisalign braces. Some things you can do to relieve the pain is to drink smoothies and slushies and eat ice cream and frozen yoghurt, in moderation. 

5. Flossing can be challenging

Flossing can be a more challenging part of your dental hygiene routine when you have metal braces in particular. This is because there is an obstacle in the way of your natural teeth. But you also need to be careful so as not to damage the braces in the process. However, there are specialist tools that have been designed with braces in mind. 

They are made in such a way that they can reach up through the gaps in your braces without the possibility of damaging your braces. You might need to set more time aside for flossing your teeth when you have braces. In addition, you also need to ensure your teeth are clean before putting your Invisalign braces back in.

6. Food will become stuck in your braces

If you thought it was time consuming to floss your teeth without braces, the process becomes even more lengthy when you consider metal braces. It is easier if you choose Invisalign braces over the more conventional type of braces. However, food will get caught in your metal braces, more so than with your natural teeth. 

You need to make sure that you are paying particular attention to food that becomes trapped in your braces, as well as in your natural teeth. It might take more time to rid your mouth of food debris with metal braces, but it is paramount to ensure their cleanliness and integrity.

7. Braces can make your mouth look different

This is more the case with metal braces, simply because of the metal studs that are attached to the teeth and then the metal brackets that connect them. The contraption can protrude slightly, causing them to come into contact with the lips. This can push them outwards and away from the teeth. 

This is what can cause the lips to look slightly different when you have braces fitted. Where this can make the lips look more pronounced, it can also cause some discomfort when the metal braces rub against the lips. In these cases, it is recommended that you use wax on them to protect your lips from any friction.

8. They can be costly

Unless you can acquire orthodontic treatment on the NHS, or subsidised by the NHS, having braces can be expensive. However, you have to compare the cost of having braces with the benefits that are to be had as a result. Orthodontic treatment will last a lifetime. Whether you have braces at 12 or at 50-years-old, you can expect the results to last for many, many decades to come. As well as this, straight teeth can minimise the likelihood of tooth decay, as there are less places for food to hide in. 

It also makes cleaning far easier, including brushing and flossing. You will need to make sure that you are still maintaining excellent oral hygiene both throughout your orthodontic treatment and afterwards. This means brushing and flossing your teeth at least twice a day and after every meal. As well as restoring excellent functionality, braces will transform your smile, ensuring the appearance of your teeth is improved. It is often argued that orthodontic treatment is considered to be cosmetic dental treatment. 

Quorn Dental Practice and Implant Clinic are pleased to provide orthodontic treatment to our patients throughout Loughborough and the surrounding areas. In addition to braces, we can also offer treatment for gum disease and we can also perform root canals and other specialist dental treatments. In addition, we can also offer: veneers, dental crowns, dentures, dental bridges, general check-ups, emergency appointments and more. For further information about how we can help you today, get in touch with a member of our professional team – we are always happy to hear from you.