You Have Options for Orthodontic Treatment (Traditional Braces Are Just One of Them)

| 8 min read

You want straighter teeth. But the thought of braces isn't appealing.

No worries, you have options for orthodontic treatment - braces are just one solution among them.

And if the treatment itself is enough to cause you to delay, it might help to understand why there's more to orthodontics than straightening your teeth.

Why orthodontics?

There are some fundamental reasons why your dentist would recommend a particular orthodontic treatment. Each condition could cause specific issues that orthodontics can solve.


Malo...what, you might say? Basically, this means your teeth are misaligned.

Tooth misalignment (malocclusion) can create a variety of dental problems.

  • An overbite: your upper/front teeth overlap or protrude over the lower teeth when your mouth is closed. Jaw or skeletal issues can contribute to this condition that can cause improper chewing, tooth wear/damage, and jaw strain.
  • An underbite: your lower teeth and jaw protrude (extend) in front of your upper teeth when your mouth is closed. Genetics, certain habits, or issues with jawbone growth can cause this condition.
  • A cross bite or open bite: your upper and lower teeth don't meet properly. The side or front of your mouth can be affected by this condition potentially resulting in tooth wear, gum disease, improper jaw development, or problems with jaw function.

2-Crowding and spacing

This condition refers to those gaps you might have between your teeth. It could also explain why your teeth are too tight and have minimal space between them.

3-Jaw alignment

A misaligned jaw condition can cause difficulty when speaking or chewing.


The desire to improve the appearance of your smile is a common reason orthodontics could be recommended. Straight teeth can boost your confidence.

A confidence boost would certainly be considered a benefit.

And speaking of...

What are the general benefits of orthodontic treatment?

Your oral health is improved

Orthodontic treatment creates a positive impact on your daily oral health habits and preventive care.

Straight teeth are easier to brush and floss. That's in contrast to teeth that have malocclusion or are overcrowded.

Issues such as tooth decay or gum disease have much less negative impact on properly aligned teeth.

Your tooth function is improved

A corrected bite improves your chewing capability. This can lead to better food digestion and overall nutritional benefits.

Your speech is improved

Tooth misalignment can affect how you articulate your words. Orthodontic treatment brings your teeth into proper alignment and can enable you to speak more clearly.

Your confidence is improved

Straight teeth encourage you to smile more often and more confidently. The confidence gained from orthodontic treatment can further impact your personal and professional relationships and your career.

With those benefits in mind, you're likely interested the orthodontic options that are available.

The common orthodontic treatment solutions

Traditional metal braces

When you think of orthodontics you probably think of this option. The treatment utilizes metal brackets and wires that apply gentle pressure to your teeth and gradually move them into proper alignment.

Ceramic braces

This treatment option is similar to metal braces. The primary difference is instead of noticeable metal wires or brackets this option uses less obvious tooth-colored or clear brackets.

Clear aligners

Perhaps you associate this orthodontic solution with the popular Invisalign® brand. Clear aligners are customized to fit your unique condition, are removable, and are virtually unnoticeable in your mouth.

Lingual braces

This treatment option functions much like traditional braces. The exception is that lingual braces are fixed behind your teeth instead of in front.

Some misalignment conditions might require further consultation about additonal treatment options. The above mentioned orthodontic solutions are most common.

Now that you know your options for orthodontic treatment, it's important to know why your dentist recommends a specific solution for straightening your teeth.

How to choose the orthodontic solution that's right for you

The complexity of your condition

A severe or complex case of tooth misalignment could require traditional braces instead of clear aligners.

Treatment aesthetics

For example, if you want a less noticeable treatment for the duration you might opt for ceramic braces or clear aligners.

Cost and budget

Relative to your potential investment, it's common for metal braces to be less costly than clear aligners or lingual braces.

Your lifestyle

How active you are, participation in certain sports, or your career might lead you to choose one type of treatment over another.

Treatment duration

Some orthodontic treatment plans require more time than others. It's essential to discuss the treatment timeline so you understand the impact on your lifestyle and daily routines.

As noted, there's more to orthodontic treatment than appearances. It's a treatment that covers a lot of oral health territory.

  • Understand why orthodontics is recommended.
  • Explore the benefits and options available to you.
  • Decide, alongside your dentist, what is the best solution for your condition.

Discover more about orthodontic treatment in this related content:

Is Orthodontic Treatment Necessary and If So, What Are the Advantages?

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