Myth Buster: Do Metal Braces Work Faster Than Other Types of Braces?

If you’re looking to start your own orthodontic journey, you probably have a myriad of questions. In fact, you’ve probably also heard a rumour floating around that metal braces work faster than other types of braces. But let’s just hold onto that thought for a second and dive into this common misconception and separate fact from fiction.

Metal braces, a cornerstone of orthodontic treatment, consist of stainless steel brackets and wires that have long been dubbed as “train tracks”. These tried-and-true fixtures have stood the test of time, remaining a reliable choice for achieving straighter smiles over the years. And thanks to advancements in orthodontics, modern metal braces have many notable improvements, including significantly smaller brackets to aid discretion throughout treatment.

Nonetheless, the fundamental process remains consistent. A series of brackets and wires works in conjunction with each other to gradually guide teeth into the correct alignment.

So why are they considered to be so great and do metal braces work faster than any other brace type? Well, here’s the thing… They don’t!

In the world of orthodontics, speed isn’t solely determined by the type of braces you choose. In fact, it’s more of a team effort, with factors such as the complexity of your case including dental misalignment, your age, how well you take care of your teeth, and yes, the type of braces you opt for, all playing a part.

Before we look at the different types of braces and how they work individually, let’s consider the role of orthodontics as a whole. You see, while we are often more focused on the aesthetics of a perfectly straight smile, beyond the gum line and into the roots of the teeth lies a whole other story. It’s the reason why orthodontics is a more sustainable tooth treatment choice over the likes of veneers, for example.

While your chosen brace is aligning the parts of the teeth we can see, it is also working to move the root of the tooth into alignment within the jaw, as well. This is why it takes time to get the results you’re expecting. This is also why people who have had orthodontic treatment typically have stronger teeth in the years that follow.

Now let’s talk about those alternatives you might have heard about.

Ceramic braces? Ceramic braces are, to all intents and purposes, exactly the same as metal braces and work exactly the same way. The only difference is that the brackets fitted to the teeth are a clear or tooth-coloured ceramic as opposed to metal. Think of them as the metal braces’ chic cousin. They aren’t invisible by any means, but they are less noticeable.

What about lingual braces? Well, these are very simple. Picture metal braces. But instead of being at the front of the teeth, they’re stealthily tucked away behind your teeth. Pretty cool, eh?

Once again, they work the same way as metal braces. They just exert pressure from the back side of the teeth as opposed to the front. Lingual braces are particularly popular with adults undergoing orthodontic treatment who feel a little more self-conscious about having a more traditional brace fitted. Nevertheless, these almost-invisible braces are suitable for people of all ages.

Finally, let’s not forget the superstar of discreet treatment: clear aligners, like Invisalign®. These custom-made trays gently nudge your teeth into place. They apply pressure to key areas of the teeth to gradually move them into place. Unlike the aforementioned brace types, these clear aligners are taken out when eating, but should always be put back in immediately after.

Due to their transparent nature, clear aligners are also virtually invisible. However, these delicately discreet aligners won’t straighten your teeth any quicker either. In fact, some may argue that they can take longer (or they do if you forget to put them back in!).

Here’s the secret. While these orthodontic options offer different looks and feels, they’re all on par when it comes to effectiveness. Yup, you heard that right. No single type of braces has a secret speed advantage over the others. They will all do the work they are designed to do in the time it takes.

Here at Orthodontics For You, instead of focusing on the speed of treatment, we turn our attention to finding the best fit for you and your smile goals. If you’ve got a straightforward case, you might see results quicker no matter which type of braces you choose. But if your teeth need a little extra love, it might take a bit longer – and that’s also okay!

The Orthodontics for You team are all about personalised care and making sure patients in both our Solihull and Bromsgrove practices are comfortable every step of the way. When you come in for a consultation, we’ll chat about your dental goals, assess your smile, and come up with a game plan that suits you to a T.

Oh, and speaking of game plans, there’s one more thing that can make a big difference in how quickly you see results: you! Yep, your dedication to following our instructions, keeping up with appointments, and taking good care of your teeth can help speed things along.

So, there you have it, the answer to the question, “Do metal braces work faster than other types of braces?” Remember, it’s not about speed. It’s about finding what works best for you. And, no matter which path you choose, we’ll be here cheering you every step of the way!

Start your journey to a new smile today and register for your free, no obligation consultation here.


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