Braces are used by Orthodontists to straighten people’s teeth. They can also be used to correct other problems, such as a person’s under bite or to fix any teeth that are irregular. There are three primary components that make up the traditional metal version. These parts are the bracket, archwire and elastics.
A special bonding compound is used to attach the brackets to the teeth. Then, a wire is run through them. The wire is secured with tiny rubber bands. The arch wires and brackets work together to move the teeth from one position to another. This process can straighten and level teeth, close and open gaps and correct a person’s bite. It is important to note that there are other kinds available including ceramic (which are sometimes referred to as clear braces) and self-tightening Damon braces. Lingual (invisible) braces are a popular choice among adults.
The archwire puts pressure on the bracket. This pressure is distributed to each tooth. The archwire aims the teeth to their new destination in the mouth. The material used to construct the archwire actually gets more rigid when exposed to an individual’s natural body heat. Prior to using elastics, ligature wire was used to hold the arch wire in place. When teeth have pressure applied to them, the membrane surrounding the tooth’s root expands on one side and squeezes shut on the other. This assists with loosening the tooth in the gums. Once the tooth is done moving the gums adjust to keep the tooth at its new location.
Moving teeth slowly is very important. If teeth are moved too quickly and are loosened from the gums too much, the patient could completely lose one or more teeth. That is why the majority of people keep them on for no less than two years and have to get adjustments on a regular basis. An Orthodontist may make use of elastics to increase the pressure the wire places on the brackets. This helps pull the teeth in the right direction. Elastics can be clear or colored. They are sometimes referred to as ligature ties.
Many teenagers cannot wait until they get to choose the colors of their braces. They can change them every time they go to the orthodontist to get their braces tightened, which allows them to change things up and try different patterns and styles. Those who are very active in their schools may use their school colors for their braces. People sometimes use the colors of an organization or sports team that they are a part of. Holidays provide another popular reason to get certain colors. Around Halloween, black and orange are popular choices and around Christmas, red and green.
Some individuals need what is called a power chain to move their teeth. The chain looks much different than the ligature tie method. Basically, it looks like a long continuous band that wraps around each of the braces. One of the benefits of the power chain is that its color is really noticeable.
There are numerous choices available. Here are some of the many different colors that orthodontists typically have: Screaming Pink, Extreme Green, Radical Red, Orange Blast, Mediterranean, Midnight Glow, Plum Crazy, Kelly Green, Light Blue, Deep Black, Lavender, Dusky Blue, Teal and Hot Red.
Good Color Combinations
Some choose to alternate between two colors – one on the odd numbered teeth and the other on the even. This makes for a nice looking pattern. Also, some choose to get the full rainbow and others get a different color for every tooth. Many teens enjoy the process of coming up with their own combination and pattern ideas.
Here are some of the more popular choices:
Pink with red, rainbow, purple with blue or pink and purple are nice for girls.
Orange and red, yellow with orange, green and blue or blue with black are popular with boys.
Whether one chooses a single color or several for a specific scheme, the end result is always interesting to see.
Not Everyone Wears Colored Braces
There are several kinds of braces, but not all of them can have colors added. Another kind of braces, called self-litigating braces, has a metal door that locks in the wire. Those with the self-ligating braces do not have the option to choose colored bands. That said, if an individual really wants to have colors on their braces, it can be done on the self-litigating kind. However, it lengthens treatment time and can cause extra (unnecessary) discomfort.
Combinations & Colors to Avoid
These troublesome colors apply to both girls and boys. While the following colors can be a problem by themselves, they may not be as big of an issue when used alongside another color.
Some say that the darker green is a mistake because it looks like there is spinach stuck in the teeth. White can also be considered a mistake, because even if your teeth are quite white, they typically look yellow and stained next to white bands. Pink can sometimes resemble bubble gum caught in the braces. Some recommend avoiding colors altogether and just wearing gray or silver. This is because gray/silver are the best to use if you want to make your braces less noticeable. However, it eliminates a lot of the fun. Dark or light blue looks good on almost everyone. Clear bands usually make bits of food and other dirt more noticeable. It can also be very difficult to keep them as clean and clear as when you first got them. If you want to look more mature, pick more conservative colors (darker) and get the same color for all your teeth. Whether one chooses clear braces, ceramic braces, or regular braces that offer a color selector wheel each visit, braces can make an enormous difference in one’s smile.