What Are The Most Discreet Orthodontic Options for Adults?

In an ideal situation, every orthodontic treatment would be discreet. Thankfully, there are alternatives to traditional braces that prioritize subtly. Today, Clauss Orthodontics is prepared to tackle this frequently asked question: What are the most discreet orthodontic options for adults?

Exploring Your Options

In orthodontics, in general, there are three primary alignment methods (and an additional one that we offer). 

  1. Metal braces are the most traditional and, arguably, the most noticeable option commonly provided in orthodontic offices.
  2. Ceramic braces offer an appealing compromise for many patients. 
  3. Invisalign is frequently considered the premier choice for those desiring a discreet option. These clear aligners snugly conform to your teeth, rendering them nearly invisible, and they progressively guide tooth movement as you transition through various sets.

About Metal Braces

This classic option has been reliable for many patients—let’s break the elements down. Of the three, they are the most visible but shouldn’t be ruled out as an excellent choice.

  1. Brackets: The brackets are made of metal that is adhered to the front of the teeth for the duration of treatment. 
  2. Wires: The wires connect the brackets and help apply the necessary force for straighter teeth.
  3. Elastics: These elastic bands apply an additional force as needed to complete treatment and can be colored or clear.  

About Clear Braces

Here are some of the main features of ceramic braces, many of which are similar to metal ones but have some distinct differences:

  1. Material: Braces of this type can be crafted from ceramic, porcelain, or a combination of materials.
  2. Translucency: Engineered with a slight transparency, these braces allow some light to pass through, facilitating the assimilation of the natural color of the teeth.
  3. Bracket Design: The brackets themselves are typically smaller and feature a more inconspicuous profile compared to their traditional metal counterparts, contributing to an overall reduction in visibility.

Maintaining proper oral hygiene practices and attending regular dental check-ups are essential to having any type of alignment treatment. Clear braces are no exception! Keep them free of food and debris for successful treatment.

What Are The Most Discreet Orthodontic Options for Adults?

About Invisalign 

Invisalign has a unique approach to alignment that eliminates some of the traditional elements you find in braces. It boasts both subtlety and effectiveness, making it the premier option for a lot of our adult patients. Here’s how the process looks:

  1. Consultation and Treatment Plan: Our initial meeting with Dr. Clauss serves to evaluate the condition of the patient’s teeth, comprehend their goals, and assess the suitability of Invisalign as a treatment option.
  2. Digital Impressions and Treatment Simulation: Instead of using traditional molds, we employ advanced 3D digital impressions to scan the teeth. These scans generate a virtual model of the patient’s teeth through specialized software, enabling us to simulate the movement process throughout the treatment.
  3. Custom Aligner Fabrication: In a laboratory, clear plastic aligners are custom-made with meticulous attention. Each aligner in the series is uniquely crafted to gradually reposition the teeth into their desired locations.
  4. Wearing the Aligners: The patient wears each set of aligners for 1-2 weeks, following our planned schedule. It is crucial to keep them on for 22 hours per day, with removal permitted only for eating, drinking, brushing, and flossing.
  5. Regular Check-Ups: Periodic check-ups are scheduled every 6-8 weeks to monitor progress and provide the subsequent set of aligners. Attendance at these visits is absolutely essential for the success of the treatment.
  6. Progressive Tooth Movement: Upon completing the entire series of aligners, the active phase of treatment concludes. Retainers are then introduced to maintain the achieved results over the long term.

FAQs About Adult Treatment

Navigating adult braces can be an unfamiliar journey for many patients, so to provide additional guidance, we’re addressing some extra questions you may have.

Q: Can braces only be for cosmetic reasons?
Braces often address multiple dental issues, not limited to cosmetic concerns. While cosmetic improvements are a common motivation for adult patients, braces can also correct issues such as misalignment, bite problems, and overall oral health.

Q: Will braces or clear aligners hurt?

It’s typical to experience some discomfort, especially initially, but this is usually temporary. Periodical adjustments, whether with metal or clear braces, may require some adjustment, but the discomfort is manageable.

Q: Are there any age-related challenges to braces?
The duration of treatment may be slightly longer for adults due to higher bone density. However, there are advantages to getting braces at an adult age, including increased discipline and commitment to the treatment process.

What Are The Most Discreet Orthodontic Options for Adults?

Making a Difference

We take great pride in meeting each of our patients where they are and determining the most effective routes for their treatment. All concerns are valid, and our team is more than happy to discuss them with you. If you’re considering starting orthodontic treatment, our Watertown and Middlebury offices are reachable by phone or text at 860.274.6625.