When it comes to orthodontic treatment, one of the most common options relied upon for decades is traditional metal train tracks braces. Commonly used for both private and NHS brace treatment, the brackets and wires of a metal brace system have consistently transformed crooked teeth into perfectly straight smiles time and time again. However, with continuous advancements in orthodontic technology, there are now a plethora of brace alternatives available. It’s not just about the metal anymore. In fact, many individuals are now wondering whether train tracks braces are still a viable choice for them, or if they would be better suited to a different type of orthodontic brace – and it’s a fair question!
In this comprehensive guide, we’ll delve into the world of traditional metal train tracks braces, exploring their benefits, considerations and suitability to help you choose the right teeth straightening solution for you.
Understanding Train Track Braces
Also known as metal braces or traditional brace systems, train track braces consist of small metal brackets that are bonded to the front surface of the teeth and connected by an archwire. Over time, the brackets and wire work together to gently and consistently push the teeth into their new desired positions. While these braces have traditionally been associated with teenagers, they are also a suitable treatment option for people over 18 years old.
The total duration of treatment for train tracks braces varies depending on the severity of the misalignment. However, it typically ranges from one to three years.
Benefits of Train Track Braces
There are a number of benefits to straightening your teeth with a modern metal brace. Not only are they robust and incredibly durable, but they’re also:
- Effective for almost all case types: Modern metal braces are highly effective for correcting a wide range of dental issues. From crooked teeth and gaps to severe misalignments and bite issues, the versatility of a metal brace makes them a suitable choice for many patients.
- Precise control: Orthodontists have refined control over the movement of each tooth due to the individual bracket placement and adjustments. This precision ensures a comprehensive and tailored treatment plan, which all patients receive as standard with us at Orthodontics For You.
- Reliable results: While newer alternatives have emerged, train tracks braces remain a reliable orthodontic treatment option. The track record of successful outcomes is well-established and reassuring for patients.
- Affordability: Traditional braces are more cost-effective than newer alternatives, making them an accessible option for more individuals seeking orthodontic treatment on a budget. You can find out more regarding the cost of metal brace treatment at Orthodontics For You on our finance page. It’s also worth noting that patients of Orthodontics For You can spread the cost of their treatment without having to undergo credit checks with our monthly direct debit option.
- Customisation: The brackets come in various shapes and sizes, allowing for an element of customisation. Some patients even have the option to choose coloured bands, adding a touch of personalisation to their treatment.
Considerations When Choosing Train Track Braces
- Aesthetics: One of the primary concerns for individuals considering train track braces is their visibility. While advancements in the design of modern metal brackets have made them smaller and less noticeable, they are still more conspicuous than some of the newer, more discreet options such as ceramic braces or Invisalign.
- Frequent adjustments: Throughout treatment, you will need to visit your orthodontist approximately every six weeks for your brace to be adjusted. This is to ensure your braces’ effectiveness. Your orthodontist will tighten the archwire running through the brackets to ensure it continues to exert the right amount of pressure to move your teeth to their new positions.
- Comfort: The brackets and wires of traditional metal braces can cause some discomfort and irritation, especially when the brace is first fitted and after adjustment appointments. Patients may experience soreness and potentially mouth ulcers, too, but rest assured any discomfort will soon pass (usually after a few days at most).
- Oral hygiene: Maintaining good oral hygiene can be more challenging with train track braces simply due to the presence of the brackets and wires. With that in mind, your daily teeth cleaning rituals will need to be upgraded. We recommend brushing your teeth after every meal (in addition to morning and evening times) to ensure the successful removal of food debris and to prevent plaque build-up, keeping your breath fresh and your smile bright.
- Dietary restrictions: Sticky, chewy and tough foods, such as sweets, popcorn and hard nuts, should be avoided while wearing your train track style brace as they can damage the brackets or get stuck in the wires.
Choosing the right orthodontic treatment is a significant decision that requires careful consideration of important factors, such as the severity of your own dental alignment, your lifestyle and aesthetic preferences. While train track braces might not be the most inconspicuous option, they have stood the test of time and continue to offer effective solutions for individuals with various orthodontic requirements. They’re the most inexpensive brace type, too!
Here at Orthodontics For You, we invite all prospective patients to book a consultation – they’re free and there is no obligation to proceed if you decide otherwise at a later date. During your consultation appointment, our orthodontists will assess the position of your teeth, structure of your jaw and overall health of your mouth before recommending which brace type would work well for you.