5 Common Myths about Metal Braces Debunked!

When it comes to orthodontic treatment, metal braces have been a successfully proven option for decades. However, despite their effectiveness, there are many myths and misconceptions surrounding metal braces that can stop people from considering them as a treatment option.

This article will reveal the truth behind five popular misconceptions about metal braces and equip you with accurate information to help you make an informed decision about your orthodontic treatment.

Myth #1: Metal braces are painful and uncomfortable

The notion that metal braces are an uncomfortable and painful orthodontic treatment is a common misconception that persists in the minds of many. There is a widespread belief that traditional braces require numerous wires and brackets that cause consistent irritation and agony to the wearer.

What is the truth?

While it’s true that metal braces can cause minor discomfort, it’s typically not as severe or long-lasting as many people think. In most of the cases, patients may feel mild discomfort for a few days after getting braces or after adjustments. However, this discomfort can be managed with over-the-counter (OTC) pain relievers, and patients can eat soft foods until the discomfort subsides.

Additionally, orthodontic wax can be applied to the brackets and wires to help prevent irritation or discomfort from the metal rubbing against the lips and cheeks. Orthodontic wax is easy to apply and can be found at most drugstores.

It’s essential to remember that any discomfort associated with metal braces is temporary and part of the normal adjustment process. Your orthodontist will ensure that the braces are adjusted in gradual way to minimize the discomfort.

Myth #2: Metal braces are unsightly and noticeable

Many people believe that metal braces are unsightly and highly noticeable, which can make them hesitant to pursue this treatment option. They may worry about feeling self-conscious or embarrassed about their appearance while wearing braces.

What is the truth?

While metal braces are certainly noticeable, they are not as unsightly or unattractive as many people believe. In fact, many people find that braces can be an interesting and even fashionable accessory. Additionally, metal braces can be customized with colored elastics, allowing patients to express their unique style or even match their braces to a particular outfit or event.

Myth #3: Metal braces interfere with speech and eating

Many people believe that metal braces can interfere with their speech and eating, making it difficult to communicate clearly or eat certain foods. This myth is often fueled by stories of people who have struggled with braces in the past and found them to be uncomfortable or inconvenient.

What is the truth?

While metal braces can take some getting used to, they typically do not interfere with speech or eating in any significant way. In fact, many patients find that after a short adjustment period, they can speak and eat normally with braces.

In terms of eating, it’s true that patients with braces may need to avoid certain hard, sticky, or crunchy foods to prevent damage to the braces or wires. However, this is a minor inconvenience compared to the benefits of straighter teeth and a healthier smile.

Regarding speech, some patients may experience minor changes to their speech patterns when they first get braces, but this is usually temporary and quickly adapts to the new appliances. This is because the tongue and other oral muscles need time to adjust to the presence of the braces.

Studies have shown that speech production can actually be improved with orthodontic treatment. Correcting misaligned teeth can help to improve the position of the tongue and other oral structures, leading to clearer speech and better pronunciation.

Myth #4: Metal braces require a lot of maintenance

People believe that they will need to spend a lot of time and effort caring for their braces, which can be inconvenient or difficult to manage.

What is the truth?

The truth is that metal braces require minimal maintenance, especially with modern orthodontic techniques and materials. Patients with braces are advised to brush and floss their teeth regularly to prevent tooth decay and gum disease. However, this is a standard oral hygiene practice that should be followed regardless of whether or not braces are involved.

Patients with braces may also need to avoid certain foods to prevent damage to the braces or wires, as previously mentioned. However, it is not a big deal which cannot be managed.

Myth #5: Metal braces are only for children and teenagers

Many people believe that metal braces are only suitable for children and teenagers. This is often because orthodontic treatment is more common during adolescence, and many people associate braces with teenage years. However, American Association of Orthodontics statistics shows that one in 8 orthodontic patients is over the age of 18 and a significant number of adults would benefit from orthodontic treatment.

What is the truth?

The truth is that metal braces can be effective for patients of all ages, and there is no upper age limit for orthodontic treatment. In fact, many adults choose to pursue braces as a way to improve their oral health and enhance their appearance.

Orthodontic treatment for adults can be particularly beneficial for those who have experienced shifting teeth or have had teeth removed earlier in life, as well as for those who are looking to improve their bite or jaw alignment.

Additionally, metal braces serve as a cost-effective orthodontic solution for individuals who may have missed out on earlier treatment opportunities.

A Bonus Myth around metal braces

Traditional metal braces have been the most commonly used orthodontic treatment option for several decades, and treatment times in the past were indeed longer than they are today. People think that orthodontic treatment is painful and inconvenient. They also believe that metal braces take a long time to straighten teeth due to stories they may have heard from friends or family members who have undergone orthodontic treatment in the past.

There is some extent of truth that orthodontic treatment can take some time, advances in technology have made the process faster and more comfortable than ever before. With traditional metal braces, treatment typically lasts between 18 and 36 months, depending on the severity of the case.

The length of treatment depends on some other factors as well such as the patient’s age. This is because a person’s age can affect the rate at which their teeth move. Younger patients tend to have teeth that move more quickly, and their bones are still developing, making it easier to adjust their teeth. In contrast, older patients may require longer treatment times due to denser bones and slower tooth movement.

The length of treatment can vary widely depending on the type of orthodontic fittings used. For example, clear aligners may be a faster option for some patients, while lingual braces (which are placed on the back of the teeth) may take longer to achieve the desired results.

Other interesting/Fun myths around metal braces

  1. Myth: Metal braces will stain your teeth – No it won’t. Its stainless steel and does not stain teeth.
  2. Myth: Metal braces require strict dietary restrictions – Hard and sticky foods need to be avoided but you can still eat about 90% of foods without risking breaking or damaging your braces.
  3. Myth: Metal braces are only suitable for people with severe orthodontic problems – Orthodontists can suggest it for non-severe problems.
  4. Myth: Metal braces are too expensive for most people – At Family Braces we strive to make all orthodontic treatments affordable for Calgarians. Payment plans start from $149/month for metal braces.

If you’re considering orthodontic treatment, don’t let these myths about metal braces stop you from achieving a straighter, healthier smile. At Family Braces, we offer a range of orthodontic services to suit your needs, including traditional metal braces and other innovative treatments.

Our experienced team is dedicated to providing quality care and ensuring that you feel comfortable throughout your treatment journey. Contact us today to schedule a consultation and take the first step towards your best smile.