If you are suffering due to moderate to severe dental misalignment, orthodontic specialist Richard D. Hulme in San Antonio, TX, is uniquely qualified to help you. He provides both metal and clear ceramic dental braces designed for greater comfort and faster results.
Braces are a common orthodontic treatment method that relies on brackets and wires to apply force to the teeth, aligning them over time. The hardware is periodically adjusted to exert the right amount of pressure needed to straighten teeth and properly align the patient's bite.
Ceramic braces offer a discreet option for treating more serious cases of malocclusion.
Metal vs. Ceramic Braces
Traditional metal braces consist of stainless steel components. We typically recommend metal braces for those with the most severe alignment issues. Clear ceramic braces are more discreet than metal braces and help many patients who are not candidates for Invisalign® to undergo orthodontic treatment without feeling self-conscious. However, it is important to understand that clear hardware can become stained. During your free consultation, Dr. Hulme can help decide which option is right for you.
Dr. Hulme provides both metal and clear ceramic dental braces designed for greater comfort and faster results.
When deciding which treatment to prescribe for your treatment, Dr. Hulme will consider several factors, including:
- Tooth and jaw alignment
- Treatment goals
Braces are typically recommended for patients who have serious misalignment that Invisalign may not be able to adequately address. Other patients may have difficulties with compliance. For instance, teens may lose their trays or senior patients may struggle with removing and replacing them throughout the day.
Maximum Results through Minimal Pressure
Normally, braces treatment requires patients to attend appointments about every four weeks to replace rubber bands and tighten the wire. However, Dr. Hulme uses an advanced wire with greater elasticity. It often only requires adjustments every six weeks. Meanwhile, this wire is more comfortable and can require a shorter overall treatment timeline. It is important to note that your treatment timeline will ultimately depend on the complexity of your dental issues.
Treatment Compliance Requirements
To prevent damage to your braces, it is important to avoid sticky and hard foods such as:
- Sweets (licorice, toffee, caramels, hard candies)
- Certain bread products such as pizza crust, bagels, or french bread
- Apples and carrots (whole or in large pieces)
Additionally, patients should minimize sugar intake. Brushing and flossing are more difficult during orthodontic treatment, and sugary foods could increase the risk of tooth decay and other issues.
Patients must follow a strict daily brushing and flossing routine. You should brush your teeth and clean your braces after every meal because food and bacteria can easily become caught between brackets and wires. To properly clean your teeth, you will need an interdental brush. If at any point your braces become damaged, you should contact us immediately.
Maintaining Your Results
Once you have completed your treatment, you will need to wear a retainer for a prescribed amount of time in order to maintain your results. Dr. Hulme will provide detailed instructions on how to use your retainer properly.