Lingual Dental Braces [What are They?]

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UPDATED 11-07-18

Today, patients are concerned with the after appearance of an orthodontic treatment than ever. Since the introduction of Invisalign aligners, more patients have shown interest in such treatment because aligners straighten teeth without the need for visible braces. Unfortunately not every teeth problem can be corrected with plastic aligners. Despite being in the market for decades, the aligners still look like braces. Recently, technology facilitated a third option; lingual dental braces.

What are Lingual Dental Braces?

Lingual Dental Braces vs Invisalign Clear BracesLingual stands for tongue. For a long time, metal braces have been very common among people who want to get their teeth straightened and those conscious of their appearance. The placement of harmony braces behind the teeth is what sets this treatment apart. The braces are invisible, and this is one major reason patients choose the treatment over the traditional metal braces. Lingual appliances are placed behind the teeth not the front thereby keeping braces from showing.
This explains how they offer a great cosmetic alternative.

The orthodontist takes an impression of the patient’s teeth then takes it to the dental laboratory to create customized brackets. This process may take a month and a half to complete. Later the orthodontist cements the braces on the teeth’s back surfaces. The process works by applying pressure on the teeth to shift them into the right position. Depending on the overcrowding of the patient’s teeth, treatment may take up to 36 weeks.

The positioning of the braces affects the teeth and can be a little difficult to get used to than traditional braces. However, they are worth the investment. At first, swallowing and speaking can be very difficult without tongue thrust. At times, treatment can take longer than the period taken by traditional braces. With lingual dental braces, there has to be diligence in cleaning teeth. This is because their placement makes it difficult to inspect food particles when brushing.


Lingual Brackets Care

Just like it is with all orthodontic appliances, maintaining good oral hygiene is vital to keep off tooth decay and gingivitis. Hygiene has to include:

  • Brushing the teeth twice daily
  • Flossing daily to get rid of plaque
  • Using a fluoride rinse when rinsing the teeth to strengthen them.

Keeping the brackets clean is not optional no matter the type chosen. Understand that food gets stuck in the wires all the time. This can lead to decay and the buildup of plaque. Since the braces are placed at the back of the teeth, be sure to brush well behind there. Choosing a toothbrush with a narrow tip may be helpful in reaching the back of your teeth easily.



The advantage of lingual brackets is mostly aesthetic. Besides being invisible, lingual comes with more benefits.

  • They are more efficient than clear aligners for certain movements such as changing teeth height and correcting rotations.
  • Should there be discoloration, it will occur on the inside of the teeth.
  • They are not easily detected. If one looks carefully, they may only get a glimpsed of the appliance.
  • For patents who find the traditional braces embarrassing, lingual treatment is the ultimate choice.
  • They are customizable meaning they can be designed individually for you.
  • Success is seen within a very short time after treatment.
  • It is suitable for both children and adults.
  • No nickel allergies are experienced after the treatment because the incognito appliance is made from gold alloy.


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  • Lingual braces generally will cost more than traditional braces.  They are fully customized and are created using state of the art digital imaging technology.  With lingual braces, you need an orthodontist who fully understands the biomechanics behind using braces placed on the inside of your teeth rather than the outside.  All these factors mean you need a lingual braces expert who may charge a bit more then someone who does not have as much experience with this type of braces.
  • Office appointments may take slightly longer than is the case with conventional braces.
  • Tongue soreness: Your tongue may want to occupy the exact space the braces already occupy. Therefore, in the first few days, you may experience soreness



Is Lingual Treatment Right for you?

The only way to be sure that lingual treatment is right for you is by consulting a professional orthodontist. If your occupation does not allow regular braces or you simply want to keep your treatment private, lingual treatment is your perfect choice. Find a lingual braces orthodontist near you today.

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Lingual Dental Braces: What are they?



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