Metal braces, made of stainless steel or titanium, are known as “traditional braces” because the first orthodontic braces were made of metal. They still continue to be the most commonly-used type of braces today. Luckily, today’s braces are smaller, flatter and more comfortable than braces of the past.
Metal braces have three parts to them. The brackets are cemented directly to the surface of the teeth. An arch wire is placed in the brackets, linking them together. It is the arch wire that is adjusted to apply pressure to the teeth. Elastic ties are what hold the arch wire in the brackets. Fresh ones are placed each time a patient comes in for the arch wire to be adjusted. The elastic ties usually come in a variety of colors.
Braces are skillfully tightened and adjusted in order to shift teeth into a straightened position. Rubber bands or other appliances are used in conjunction with braces for a thorough adjustment of the entire mouth.Back