3 Things You Should Know About Metal Braces

Are your teeth slightly crooked and full of gaps in between them? You might be the ideal candidate for placement of metal braces. However, the overall condition of your oral health will play a major role in if getting metal braces is the best way to fix your teeth. In this article, you will gain more insight on metal braces to decide if you want to move forward with making an appointment with an orthodontist.

How Gaps Are Closed Up

The purpose of metal braces is to slowly move gapped teeth closer together and to straighten crooked teeth. Basically, an orthodontist will place metal brackets on your teeth that are customized for your mouth, and then arch wires will be attached to the brackets that will constantly place pressure on your teeth. The reason arch wires are able to create constant pressure is because they will naturally try to return to their original shape after being bent around the bracket slots. During the process of your teeth moving closer together, old bones will dissolve and new bones will develop, which is known as bone remodeling.

Determining If Your Oral Health is Good Enough

An orthodontist will examine your teeth, gums and jawbones before deciding that you are a good candidate for wearing metal braces. Your mouth will be X-rayed so the orthodontist can evaluate the condition of your jawbones. Weak jawbones might not make you a good candidate for metal braces because your teeth can fall out during the process of them being moved closer together. If you have gum disease, it can interfere with you being able to get metal braces. However, an orthodontist can likely treat gum disease and prepare you for metal braces if there are no other underlying issues.

The Possible Complications

Although wearing metal braces is typically a safe thing to do, it is important for you to know about the possible complications that can occur. One of the possible complications is called root absorption, which occurs when the metal braces are moving your teeth faster than they should. The fast movement leaves no time for new bones to grow, which can harm the tissues surrounding your teeth and cause tooth roots to erode. Another possible complication is tooth decay if you don't practice good oral hygiene habits after the braces are installed, as plaque can get stuck on the braces. Consult with an orthodontist like Thomas H. Seal DDS about wearing metal braces as soon as you can.