Lingual braces are completely invisible because they are placed on the back of the teeth instead of the front. This is the number one reason that people choose this method of braces for correcting orthodontic issues. Lingual braces are most commonly used by adults who are concerned about aesthetics.
Not All Orthodontists Offer Lingual Braces
Not all orthodontists offer Lingual braces as an option of treatment for their patients. The reason for this is two-fold. First, an orthodontist is required to obtain additional education from the American Lingual Orthodontic Association to learn how to use the tools needed for the application. Second, all Lingual braces are custom-engineered for each individual person and the doctor must learn how to do this too.
Love Orthodontics is proud to announce that Dr. Grewal has received specialized training and is authorized to offer Lingual Braces as an additional option for those who qualify for this type of treatment.
Who Is a Candidate for Lingual Braces?
Because Lingual Braces are placed on the back of the teeth, there are some conditions that are not able to be treated with this method. For example, people who have severe bite issues (such as a strong overbite) cannot use them because it would put too much pressure on the brackets and cause them to break off easily.
Teeth also have to be large enough for bracket placement (the surface of the tooth is smaller on the backside). Lingual braces would not be an appropriate treatment plan for younger children or for people with smaller teeth.
The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly of Lingual Braces
The great thing about Lingual Braces is that since they are on the back of the teeth, no one is going to know that you are wearing braces!
These braces are also self-ligating. That means no plastic ligatures or rubber bands are required to keep the brackets attached to the archwire as in the case of traditional braces treatment so they will feel less bulky and will be easier to keep clean.
Lingual braces also use less pressure to move your teeth than more traditional types of braces so your mouth is not going to be as sore after adjustments.
The brackets of Lingual braces are smaller, rounder, and smoother than traditional braces so that there is less tongue irritation.
It can be a little more challenging to keep your teeth clean than with traditional braces. You will need to make sure that you always brush the backs of your teeth both above and below the brackets. This is easier to do with a special narrow-tipped toothbrush. You will also need to use a special type of dental floss that will be more effective in keeping the areas between your teeth clean.
Regardless of what type of braces option you choose, there will always be an adjustment period of a few weeks. Lingual braces are a little more difficult to get used to because your tongue rests against them and the tongue is involved in more mouth functions than you might realize.
- You may feel like you are having difficulty swallowing at first. You CAN still swallow, but you’ll have to adapt to doing it a bit differently. We usually thrust our tongues forward to swallow; until you’ve adjusted to the feel of having braces, you will want to practice gently touching your teeth together before you swallow.
- Talking might feel a bit tricky. It helps to practice over-enunciating your words for a few weeks to overcome sounding “lispy.”
- Your tongue will be sore until it adjusts to the braces. We recommend rinsing your mouth with warm, salt water to sooth any raw areas and using orthodontic wax over your braces until your tongue has better adapted.
- Because less pressure is used on the teeth than with conventional braces, treatment time may take a little bit longer.
There is no “ugly!” That’s the great thing about Lingual Braces. They aren’t going to show!
All types of braces have their pros and cons and every patient has individual needs and preferences. We are happy to discuss all options and answer any questions that you may have to determine what’s right for YOU. At Love Orthodontics, we offer a free consultation and evaluation for your convenience.