With all of the technological advances in orthodontics, there are more treatment options for patients to choose from today than ever before. Nowadays, if you want to straighten your teeth you can choose from clear braces, metal braces, braces with colors, Invisalign, Invisalign Teen, Invisalign 5, Invisalign Express, etc. etc. etc.
There are even braces that are placed behind the teeth instead of on the front of teeth! That’s right; Lingual Braces are braces that are used to straighten your teeth that go behind the teeth (on the side of your tongue and palate) instead of on the front of the teeth like traditional braces. Although there is an aesthetic advantage to not showing your braces on the front of your teeth there are some major concerns with lingual braces.
Top 5 concerns with lingual braces:
- Pain and discomfort
Having braces and wires behind your teeth can be very painful as your tongue is constantly moving behind your teeth when you speak. This can cause your tongue to become irritated and even to blister in severe cases.
- Difficulties speaking
Your tongue is a major factor in our speech. It may become more difficult to clearly speak and annunciate your words with braces and wires behind your teeth.
- Oral Hygiene
A lot of people have trouble taking care of their teeth with braces on the front of their teeth where they can see them with a mirror. Imagine the difficulty of properly brushing and flossing your teeth with braces behind your teeth!
- Cost of treatment
The cost of lingual braces is typically almost double the cost of traditional braces. This can range from $8,000 – $10,000 for treatment and they are not any faster than traditional braces.
- Clear braces and Invisalign treatment are less expensive and less painful than lingual braces.
The majority of people that are considering lingual braces as a treatment option are doing so because of an aesthetic reason (they don’t want to show that they have braces). There are now several new styles of braces that are far less noticeable (clear/invisible braces or ceramic braces) as well as several products from Invisalign that allow patients to fix their teeth and not have to go through the pain or additional cost of lingual braces.
If you have any questions or concerns with your smile or your child’s smile then you should find a board certified orthodontist near you and schedule a consultation. The easiest way to find a local orthodontist is to visit the American Board Of Orthodontics website and use their orthodontist locator tool, which can help you locate an orthodontist near you.