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Lingual Braces: effective and discreet straightening with braces behind the teeth. There has come a time where you can straighten your smile and correct minor jaw alignment issues without anyone ever knowing. Certainly, there is a multitude of orthodontic treatments that you can use to achieve the desired result. That result is a smile worthy of your life. A smile you can be proud of and one to show off, instead of hiding your happiness behind your lips. The cherry on the cake is pictures of you without you hiding your teeth. Well…the time is indeed here for you to change your smile and do it without causing anyone to notice.
Lingual Braces Explained
What are lingual braces? The word lingual refers to ‘behind the teeth’ or ‘where the tongue rests.’ You may be surprised to know that the lingual braces fit in a bespoke fashion to the inside of your teeth. You would have to open real wide for anyone to see them. The inside brace is now a thing. As a result, there are many instances of brand names becoming synonymous with the device. ‘Incognito’ is just one of these, just like ‘invisible’ is to Invisalign.
Whatever brand your local lingual orthodontist uses in treatment for you, know that lingual braces are made to fit your teeth, therefore invisible. The word incog is making a come back with the youngsters too, a word formed from Latin, just like the words lingual and orthodontic.
Brands associated with this technique are:
- Incognito® and iBraces® (by 3M)
- SureSmile® L (by OraMetrix)
- Harmony® (by American Orthodontics)
- eBraces by Riton Biomaterial Co.
Lingual Braces vs Invisalign
Both lingual and aligner treatment exist to go unnoticed. And they do this remarkably well. But how to choose from two orthodontic styles that result in the same ending – a straight smile allowing for maximum oral health while realizing the full potential of the jaw structure. How to choose? Both treatments have a fair share of pro and con. Let us investigate.
Con – Orthodontists that can undertake this procedure is far lower than that of all other types. The overall length of treatment varies. It is also more expensive but not by much. A restricted diet is in effect during treatment. Your tongue will succumb to injury.
Pro – The lingual aspect gives invisibility to everyone you come in contact with. Therefore, less discomfort from attachments on the tooth. Can be made of gold alloy for protection against allergic reactions. Precision.
Con – One needs the discipline to see this through. The discoloration of the aligners happens easily if not cared for. The teeth and gums must be spotless otherwise an irritable build up of plaque occurs not to mention you get bad breath.
Pro – They are invisible to the glancing eye. There is no need to completely restrict your diet. They are popular with teenagers. The discomfort from the sore teeth is about as painful as it gets.
Are Lingual Braces Painful?
Are lingual braces painful? In a word NO! Any pain gained from lingual treatment is on the tongue. As the tongue now needs to share its space with metal and wires. Discomfort is a more fitting word for what you will experience. Over the counter medications are handy to stem the annoyance. As with all other bracing the most uncomfortable time comes after tightening and renewal of wires. Above all, just remember…NO PAIN NO GAIN.
Do Lingual Braces Cost More?
Do lingual braces cost more? In a word YES. There is a difference in cost across the board on lingual treatment. The extra cost is from the installation time needed; the bespoke factor of the devices and some are even made from gold alloy. All of these and others serve to bump up the cost of treatment. The extra cost is more than covered by the precision and end result.
Am I a Good Candidate for Lingual Braces?
Am I a good candidate for lingual braces? Firstly, it would depend upon your bite and the level of malocclusion. If there is too much overbite, the lingual aspect plays against you. There is possible damage from the brackets falling off due to the pressure. Overly crowded teeth also hinder the operation and installation of the brackets. Your local lingual orthodontist will determine the go ahead or not. You may need to start with aligners or another method to bring the condition to that of workable in the lingual sense.
There is the extra cost of treatment to consider when approaching what treatment you will undertake. The aligner method is as good as lingual in terms of results; its whether you want complete invisibility and discomfort vs near invisibility and slightly more discomfort.
Do you have time for the extra effort toward hygiene? Good candidacy starts with the dedication toward picking, washing, poking, inspecting and repeating. All with tiny mirrors if it pleases you. There is also using oddly shaped things to clean oddly shaped places. You will have to get to know the inside of your teeth well. There is also, the long time needed for an appointment. Dealing with the back side of a person’s teeth takes time and patience. Patience you will have learned from your hygiene schedule.
Can I Have Veneers at the Same Time?
This is not recommended. As the teeth move around while undergoing orthodontic treatment gaps will appear and contours of the teeth will misalign. You may be able to try temporary bonding during treatment, but it is advised across the board to wait until you have a finished and settled tooth and jawline before engaging in additional dental work like veneers.
How Do I take Care of My Lingual Braces?
Good brace keeping starts with dedication. As with all bracing treatment the user will have to give a little slack and time to the upkeep of good oral health. It is advised to brush and floss after every meal to dislodge any leftovers trapped by the brackets and wire. Swirling mouthwash around your mouth helps this process. Keeping regular appointments with your hygienist and dentist is also highly recommended.
Lingual dental braces – Advantages, Disadvantages..
- The brackets fit inside your tooth line. They can be custom fitted to the very tooth they are attached to and some brands are made from gold alloy to avoid infection and allergy reactions.
- System sophistication. The precision of this type of method allows for an extremely accurate finished product. This is from many factors. To start you will have 3d optical impressions taken. This avoids the messy gloop that you may have had years back or you have seen for sure. Your treatment is planned digitally allowing for the orthodontist to foresee movement more accurately leading to a finished result that exceeds all other treatments.
- Archwire technology means tooth movement can be pinpointed exactly.
- Did we mention ‘Invisibility?’
- There is research showing that when done correctly, overall lingual treatment times can be shorter than that of similar methods.
- The position of the brackets inside the teeth will affect the way you speak. This will be more pronounced than other methods of orthodontics as the brackets take up room which your tongue used to rule over. With lingual bracing installed your tongue has to find new resting places and it will find itself blocked when trying to position for word pronunciation.
- Your tongue will also take the brunt of injurious contact. As your tongue is soft and teeth and orthodontic brackets are hard, as a result, the tongue will be scraped, cut and sometimes may end up with outright sores, mainly the end and sides.
- Your diet will be affected. Hard crunchy foods, raw vegetables, toffee and bubblegum. These are just a few of the foods to avoid. They damage the brackets and make your life a misery.
- You will also have numerous complaints about food collection within the brackets and chewing will be an effort for the first few weeks.
- The cleaning protocol you endure during the full length of treatment.
All About My Lingual Braces!
The internet is awash with questions and peoples journeys. Thus, researching lingual experiences of other humans help to fill us with knowledge. The masses are not here to lie, you’ll find many videos on YouTube and many answers on forums like Quora with cold hard honest opinions on all aspects of lingual treatment. You can certainly follow a fellow lingual user throughout their whole journey.
See here for questions and answers from the Quora human…
There is a multitude of pictures online. Many orthodontists create a gallery to show their expertise. You can see before and after pictures of ELOS clients HERE.
A Little History
Firstly, lingual braces were invented by Craven Kurz in 1976. A professional Playboy model wanted a hidden form of bracing to protect her career. She was the first showbiz professional lingual patient, before many. Craven consulted with Dr. Jim Mulick at UCLA School of Dentistry and they went on to engage Ormco and the rest, as they say, is history. After an issue-laden start, including brackets breaking and tongue injuries we now see the 7th generation brackets in use, consequently, lingual braces are becoming a sought-after treatment method and one of the most precise available.
ELOS Member Orthodontist
Accordingly, we have 15 members providing lingual orthodontics across the USA and Canada. Furthermore, you can find your lingual orthodontist near me HERE.
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Lingual Braces: Effective and Discreet Straightening (MOTHERSHIP BLOG)
I feel very fortunate to have found a profession as rewarding as the field of Orthodontics! For over ten years, I have enjoyed creating custom, beautiful smiles for our family of patients. You can even find some of our loyal patients across the country and abroad!