Conventional metal braces are often associated with treatment procedures for irregular and uneven teeth. While they are incredibly economical and effective, these braces often result in many feeling self-conscious during the treatment period. Hence, ceramic braces are an ideal alternative for those who have to wear braces in Singapore but are self-conscious about doing so.
Although they are generally similar to their metallic counterparts, ceramic braces utilise transparent or tooth-coloured brackets instead of the metallic silver or grey brackets employed in metallic braces. This makes the ceramic braces more aesthetically pleasing and less visible, as they blend in with the colour of the surrounding teeth. Other than that, they follow the same general design structure as conventional metal braces. They consist of ceramic brackets that are bonded to individual teeth and connected by arch wires and elastic modules. Each bracket then gently pushes the teeth to their desired position.
Advantages of ceramic braces
- They are less noticeable than conventional metal braces. Ceramic brackets are made of transparent or tooth-coloured ceramic material.
- They adjust teeth fast compared to Invisalign. Typically, ceramic braces treatment can take from 6 months to three years for your teeth to straighten, whereas Invisalign treatment can take more time to correct your teeth, even if it is not severe. This is because Invisalign does not have such a secure grip on your teeth as ceramic braces, and the end result after a series of aligners may not have achieved the intended target position and angulation.
- Highly customisable. The colour of each component of the ceramic braces can be customised to an individual’s liking. The brackets are usually available in tooth-colour or clear. The arch wires come in white or silver. The elastic modules come in varying colours, allowing you to mix and match however you like, whether subdued or flashy.
- No interference with X-rays or other imaging tests. Compared to metal braces, the ceramic braces do not interfere with X-rays or other imaging tests.
Disadvantages of ceramic braces
- Compared to metal braces, they can be more costly. A set of ceramic braces costs up to S$1200 more than its metallic counterpart.
- They may result in gum sensitivity. The ceramic brackets are generally more prominent than metal ones. This often results in it being harder to keep clean as the toothbrush is not able to reach the gumline or enamel, possibly leading to receding or swollen gums.
- They are not as durable. As ceramic braces are brittle, they are more likely to fracture or break off with torsional and impact forces, when compared with metal braces.
- They stain easily. Transparent elastic modules that hold the wire and brackets together stain easily and will remain stained unless replaced. This can be circumvented somewhat by choosing opaque modules of various colours.
Cost of ceramic braces in Singapore
Typically, from the time of application to when they are removed, a set of ceramic braces costs about S$6,000 to S$7,000. This is significantly more expensive when compared to metal braces which can cost anywhere between S$5,000 to S$5,900, but way cheaper when compared to lingual braces, which can cost around S$8,000 to S$11,000.
Maintenance of ceramic braces
Ceramic brackets themselves do not stain easily. However, debris and teeth stains surrounding the brackets will show up in contrasting tones and colours. Hence, dentists and orthodontists recommend some measures to maintain the braces better:
- Floss and brush the teeth after every meal
- Avoid drinks and foods that are known to result in staining such as tea, coffee, and red wine
- Do not smoke
- Do not use whitening toothpaste
- Schedule regular orthodontic visits for maintenance and follow-up
Ceramic braces are perfect for those who need correction of severe dental problems, but prefer to keep their treatment low-key. Not sure if ceramic braces are the preferred orthodontic treatment for you? Contact us at 6734 0007 to speak with our dedicated team of dental professionals, or make an appointment with our resident orthodontist today! We are more than happy to answer all your queries.
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What are ceramic braces?
Ceramic braces are a popular orthodontic treatment in Singapore designed to straighten teeth. They even have the same archwires and ligatures (elastic bands) as traditional braces.
The major difference from traditional braces is the material that makes up the brackets. For ceramic braces, these brackets are made of ceramic materials that are harder and stiffer. It usually looks like clear or camouflaged brackets with the same colour as your teeth.
How long do ceramic braces take to straighten teeth?
The straightening process for ceramic braces usually takes around eighteen to twenty-four months for most people. Simple cases may only take a year. Consult a professional dentist in Singapore to get a better idea of how long you will need to see results.
Why do some people choose ceramic braces?
The main reason why people choose ceramic braces is because the brackets are camouflaged and transparent. Hence, they’re not as noticeable on your teeth when compared to traditional metal braces. This will be a huge advantage if you feel self-conscious in social situations with braces on.
How do ceramic braces differ from metal braces?
Besides the aforementioned difference of the materials that are used in the braces, another difference is that ceramic braces are more aesthetic because of the high-quality materials that do not tarnish. Well-designed ceramic braces would not irritate your gums or the side of your mouth when wearing them.
However, brackets that are made with ceramic could be bulkier than metal brackets, so it may pose more discomfort for some people.
With ceramic braces, it is not enough to just brush them at night time and in the morning; you should do so after every meal as ceramic braces tend to stain more easily. Ceramic braces are also less durable than their metal counterparts, so extra care has to be taken to prevent them from breaking or chipping.