If you feel like your smile is less than stellar due to crooked teeth, you probably would want to look into getting the necessary orthodontic treatment to straighten them. After all, misaligned teeth are not just aesthetically unpleasant; they can also be troublesome to clean, especially when brushing your teeth. Moreover, they may also affect your eating.
Many treatment options can help rectify various dental issues, but traditional metal braces or ceramic braces are the most common ones for tooth alignment problems. However, there are debates as to which type of braces is better. To help you, here are the overviews:
What are traditional metal braces?
Traditional braces are the ones you often see out in the general population. They are primarily made of metal and consist of three main components – the individual brackets, archwire, and rubber elastic modules.
The brackets are glued directly onto your teeth, while the U-shaped archwire goes across them, sitting in a groove on the front-facing surface of each bracket. Rubber elastic modules are then tied around the corners of the brackets to hold the archwire in place.
Combining these individual parts means that the braces will gradually help pull the teeth into their ideal positions.
What are ceramic braces?
Unlike metal braces, you probably don’t see ceramic braces as much. Why is that so? It’s not just because they aren’t as popular, but also because they are created to be a more discreet camouflaged alternative to metal braces.
They still consist of the same components, but the brackets are made of ceramic instead of metal to blend in nicely with the enamel colour of your teeth. Due to their subtle appearance, you can theoretically compare them to Invisalign braces in Singapore, but with basically the same mechanical functions as the metal braces.
What are the main differences?
Aside from the material that they are made of, there are a lot of differences between traditional metal and ceramic braces:
1. Strength and durability
If you have to compare the strength and durability between metal and ceramic brackets, the apparent winner would have to be the former.
Braces made of metal are great because they are very durable and can speed up the treatment process. With less breakage, there is less disruption to treatment.
On the other hand, while ceramic braces are more prone to breaking, their delicate nature makes them more bulky compared to metal braces, as manufacturers would try to strengthen them by making them thicker.
Since metal braces are made of materials that are darker in tone and have highly polished surfaces, they are less likely to show any discolouration on your teeth. However, they inevitably give you a metal-mouth look, since the metal braces themselves contrast with the white teeth you would normally have. Hence, they are considered less aesthetically pleasing than ceramic braces.
Because of its translucent alumina material, ceramic braces are less likely to give you that metal-mouth look. You can even choose bright coloured modules if you want to make them look more lively and fashionable, or pick tooth–coloured elastic modules to blend in with your teeth for a more subdued look. Clear transparent modules, however, can easily make teeth discolouration stand out when they pick up stains from red wine, coffee or curry.
Getting braces means having to take extra steps in oral hygiene. This is where the differences between metal and ceramic braces are noticeable – after all, the braces are challenging to maintain, but for different reasons. The brackets of metal braces are usually smaller, making it easier for the toothbrush bristles to brush through and clean the teeth.
On the other hand, ceramic braces have bigger brackets, making it more difficult to clean around your brackets as your access becomes somewhat restricted. Hence, it may lead to swollen or receding gums if your toothbrush cannot clean the enamel or the gumline.
Due to their material differences, there will be a difference in how they are priced. In most cases, ceramic braces are more expensive than traditional metal braces because the former is made of a material that is more difficult to manufacture. On the other hand, they are considered more aesthetically pleasing, with their ability to camouflage in the mouth.
If your budget plays a huge role in your decision making, you might want to go with metal braces. However, if you can afford to splurge a little, you can opt for ceramic braces.
Choosing the right approach to orthodontic treatment can be a daunting task. After all, there are many factors you have to take into account in choosing the ideal type of braces for your needs. Furthermore, there is also a need to prioritise the more important factors to narrow down your choices.
Should you need help in choosing the suitable braces, look no further than BigSmile Dental. Not only do we provide affordable metal and ceramic braces in Singapore, we also provide alternative solutions, such as Invisalign.
Moreover, we also have other services, such as teeth whitening, to help you achieve your best smile. Consult our expert dentists today for more information.