Dental braces are orthodontic appliances designed to straighten and improve the aesthetics and function of your teeth. This benefits children as straight teeth are easier to clean. In addition, after the teeth have been straightened, there is usually an increase in overall self-esteem.
However, the braces process can be uncomfortable when the teeth are being moved. Braces can also trap more food than usual, so great attention to good oral hygiene is required to prevent tooth decay and gum disease. The common types of braces include the traditional metal braces, ceramic braces, self-ligating braces and lingual braces. There are also invisible or clear braces, read more about Invisible Braces here.
Common Orthodontic Issues
- Crooked or spaced out teeth
- Protruding teeth
- Improper bites
- Jaw disharmonies
Metal braces are the most common and affordable type of braces. These braces are made of high-grade stainless steel. Metal braces are attached to the teeth and are not removable by the patient. There are also wires that are held onto the braces with colourful rubber bands. Metal braces are most popular with teenagers who like to decorate their teeth and braces with colours. However, the braces have a certain thickness and patients usually take a week or two to get used to the braces in the mouth.
Ceramic braces are made from tooth-coloured materials that blend in naturally with the colour of teeth. These braces are more aesthetically pleasing when compared to metal braces; making it a popular choice for patients who want some form of aesthetic and less visible braces. The ceramic material used in the braces are stain resistant and do not discolour easily. However, like metal braces these ceramic braces also have a certain thickness that takes some getting used to.
Self-ligating braces are slightly different from the conventional metal or ceramic braces described earlier. These braces are also attached onto the teeth; however, the wires are held onto the braces using a “gate” that is built into the braces, hence the term self-ligating. This reduces the need for rubber bands and thus there is less friction in the whole braces system. This allows for lighter forces to be used on the teeth, and often translates to more comfortable treatment. Self-ligating braces are available in both the metal and ceramic varieties.
Lingual braces are braces that are attached to the inner side of the teeth, and are hidden from the outside. These are most preferred by patients who do not want to be seen with any type of braces. However, like the fixed type of metal and ceramic braces described earlier, lingual braces also have some thickness that needs some time to get used to.
Invisible braces are suitable for patients who have the desire to solve their orthodontics concerns but are conscious of the stigma that the wearing of visible braces presents. The aligners are made of transparent and pliable material. They provide a discreet, natural appearance, and when worn there is a significant decrease in discomfort then those present in traditional braces. The aligners are removable to allow for the convenient cleaning of teeth and comfortable consumption of food. However, because these aligners are removable, patients have to be consistent and disciplined with the compliance of their treatment plans.
Benefits of Braces
- Improve aesthetics of the teeth
- Increase self confidence
- Easier to keep teeth clean
- Healthy teeth and gums
- Initial consultation and assessment
- Impressions and X-rays
- Installation of braces
- Regular reviews
- Removal of braces
Financing Orthodontic Treatment
- Price of orthodontic treatment
The price of orthodontic treatment varies according to each patient’s needs. As each individual is unique, there will be differing goals of treatment depending on the presenting clinical situation. Our clinicians will advise you on the most suitable type of braces treatment. The cost of treatment will be discussed once all the information required is established.
Orthodontic treatment is generally regarded as an aesthetic procedure. The Medisave Board therefore does not allow the use of Medisave to finance orthodontic treatment. However, if adjunct surgical procedures are required as part of braces treatment, Medisave can then be used to finance this portion of the treatment. For more details on Medisave coverage, please visit our Medisave page.
- Insurance claims
Please check with your insurance advisors on your dental insurance coverage. Our patient care counsellors are able to assist with the details on your insurance claim forms. You will then submit the necessary documentation required to your insurer. You may enquire through our website to check if your insurance company has an existing arrangement with our clinic.
FAQs on Braces
- It is common to see people having dental braces these days. Does everyone need them? Why do they have to wear braces?
People wear braces for a variety of reasons. The most common reason for orthodontic treatment with braces is to straighten out crooked teeth. Sometimes, teeth protrusion is another reason for treatment too. Other problems requiring treatment include spaced out teeth, missing teeth, improper bites and jaw disharmonies. Young children may occasionally have problems with tooth eruption, which may necessitate early orthodontic treatment.
- When is a good time to start braces?
In the majority of people who have crooked teeth but normal jaw growth, treatment can commence when most of the permanent teeth are out. This usually occurs around the age of 11 to 13 years.
However, there are some instances when early intervention is needed. Some children have developing jaw disharmonies where the jaws may be growing abnormally. Some have problems with permanent tooth eruption, either due to lack of space or misdirection of the teeth. In these situations, early braces treatment is required to assist with the growth of the jaws or help guide teeth into their respective positions. . This can take place anytime from 7 to 11 years of age.
Very often, these problems go unnoticed, which is why the American Association of Orthodontists recommends that children should see an orthodontist from 7 years of age.
- Are braces only for teenagers? Am I too old for braces?
Orthodontic treatment is usually done during the teenage years. This is a good age as tooth movement is more efficient in younger patients. In addition, there are some growth potential remaining in adolescents, which may be beneficial during the course of treatment.
Having said that, adults can benefit from braces too. There are no age limit for braces because teeth can continue to be straightened in adulthood.
- I want to straighten my teeth but I feel conscious wearing traditional metal braces. Are there other options available?
As more adults seek orthodontic treatment, the request for less visible, hidden or invisible braces have increased. Fortunately, there are braces available to not only suit the adult wearer’s request for a less visible or invisible treatment experience, these braces satisfy their functional purpose as well as traditional metal braces.
Ceramic braces, made of tooth-coloured ceramic brackets which are less visible at a glance, is a common solution to eradicating patients’ concerns to having their braces showing. Up close, a thin metal wire can sometimes be seen threading through the braces, however, a new clear wire is now available in the market that complements ceramic braces to create a totally tooth-coloured system.
Lingual braces are braces that are attached on the inner part of the teeth, as all metal and wire parts are hidden behind the teeth, one can see hardly anything when looking from the outside.
Invisible braces treatment is another aesthetic option for people who wish to straighten their teeth but desire a natural appearance. This system of braces consist of numerous clear plastic aligners that are worn over the teeth. Each of these aligners is custom made and progressively moves teeth into their desired positions. The aligners are barely seen when worn over the teeth due to the transparency and clarity of the material used. These braces are convenient and hygienic as patients can remove the aligners during mealtimes and whilst cleaning their teeth.
- I have heard that retainers need to be worn after braces treatment. Why is that so?
Upon completion of orthodontic treatment, the teeth are slightly unstable in their new positions. Teeth that have been moved have a tendency to return to their original positions due to the nature of the surrounding gum tissue.
In order to minimise this tendency, retainers are usually worn over the teeth to maintain their corrected positions. In the initial period, they are worn throughout the day, only to be taken out when eating and brushing. When the teeth positions stabilise after a few months, the retainers may then be worn only at night.
Why Choose T32?
Your braces treatment at T32 will be managed by our experienced orthodontists - specialists who come with a wealth of experience and knowledge working with braces for adults and children. Orthodontists are trained full-time for at least three years in this speciality before certification as specialists. During the period of training, most of them has seen many different scenarios and are definitely well-prepared to handle complex or complicated cases.
Holistics And Comfortable Experience
T32 is dedicated to creating positive experiences by providing the comprehensive dental care in a personalised and comfortable environment. We are a one-stop solution centre with dental operatories, operating theatres, consultation rooms, a fully-equipped dental laboratory, a digital computer tomography (CT) scanning chamber, and as well as a spacious lounge for patients and their families. Our dental centre is created with aesthetics and relaxation in mind, to not only meet your dental care needs, but also to ensure a complete and pleasant experience.
We promise to deliver the highest possible level of quality care to our patients and aim to provide you with the best value for your investment in our services. Our prices reflect the whole package which includes all x-rays, follow-up consultations, impressions, retainers and braces for both upper & lower arches. There are simply no hidden charges. The option to break down the payment into progressive payments is also available for our patients who are more comfortable with partial payment plans.