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Dental braces are used to straighten or move the teeth to rectify how they look and work. They help correct crooked or crowded teeth or a misaligned jaw known as malocclusion. Braces also improve dental health as they make chewing more comfortable by spreading the chewing pressure across all your teeth. What braces do is slightly apply pressure on the teeth to move them in the right direction. Gradually, the pressure takes effect and allows the bone in the jaw to change, which then accommodates the movement of the teeth and roots.

Braces come in metal or ceramic wires and bonding material that bonds them to your teeth. The outcome of the braces mostly depends on your age and what your treatment goals are. Generally, they are effective for people who get them, but the result may depend on the person’s ability to stick to their dentist’s instructions. They produce the best outcome when used during adolescence, but they are also effective in adults who use them later in life.

How do braces align teeth?

Braces align teeth by applying pressure on them for a prolonged period. Eventually, the shape of the jaw shifts to adjust to the pressure. Many people assume that teeth are linked directly to the jaw, making it hard to move them. However, under your gums is a membrane usually surrounded by bones and holds your teeth to the jaws. As such, the membrane also controls the position of the teeth. With braces on, it conforms to the pressure on your teeth and adjusts accordingly.

How does it feel to wear braces?

Getting braces is not painful during the process, and installation may take one to two hours. Many patients experience soreness the first week as they adjust to having them on. Soreness is also likely every time they are adjusted by the orthodontist(a dentist specializing in treatment for misaligned teeth).

Braces are generally designed to be comfortable, but you may feel soreness or tenderness as your teeth begin to move. But this happens during the initial stages of the treatment and after adjusting the braces. They may feel large in your mouth, but you get to adjust slowly. You may be required to wear braces for a few months to two years, depending on your treatment’s goal. They may need adjusting after every six to eight weeks.

Reasons to have braces installed.

There are various reasons why your orthodontist may recommend braces for your teeth, including:

  • Crooked teeth.
  • Overcrowded teeth.
  • Excess or not enough spacing between your teeth.
  • Your upper front teeth stick out- overjet.
  • Your lower teeth bite too much behind your upper front teeth- overbite.
  • Your upper teeth bite too much behind your lower teeth- underbite.
  • You want to adjust the look of your smile for the better.

What is the cost of braces?

Braces for adults are not usually covered by insurance and can range from $5000 to $7000, depending on the orthodontist. Braces for beneficiary children may be covered by insurance, but the cost depends on the provider and the range of services provided by the orthodontists. Paying out of pocket may cost you $5000 for a child.


Braces are suitable for aligning misaligned teeth and rectifying crooked or crowded teeth. That improves your oral health and appearance for the better.

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