Your trusted St. Louis braces expert
The team at Dougherty Orthodontics creates beautiful smiles for patients of all ages each day in our St. Louis office. If you're in the St. Louis area, whether you're looking for a brilliant, straight smile for yourself or a loved one, our team can help. There are more orthodontic treatment options available today than ever before, including both traditional metal braces and clear, ceramic braces. Both options are among the most effective tools at our disposal when it comes to achieving optimal tooth and jaw alignment.
Types of braces
We will be able to create beautiful, straight smiles that you can feel confident in no matter which treatment option you chose. Traditional metal braces can sometimes work faster when it comes to closing gaps in your teeth and aligning them than other treatments might. That can make for shorter overall treatment times. They can also be cost-effective when compared to other options. Today's braces are also more advanced than ever before, with their superior strength, durability and affordability enabling them to withstand the test of time. That's why they remain the top orthodontic treatment method in use after all of the years.
Year after year, traditional metal braces are still the most common type orthodontists use. They typically consist of high-grade stainless steel and straighten your teeth using metal brackets and archwires. Today's metal braces are more comfortable and also more fun than ever. In some cases you have the ability to choose colored elastics to add a bit of personality to your braces during your orthodontic treatment. If you're looking for something a bit more subtle, you may also be able to choose elastics that are clear or tooth-colored.
Our clear, ceramic braces work the same way that traditional metal braces do, the major difference being that their brackets are made with a clear ceramic material instead. Like their metal counterparts, they're a great option when it comes to achieving a brilliant, straight smile. You'll see them more often on a patient's upper teeth than the lower teeth, since the upper teeth are more often visible. They're a popular treatment option among older teen and adult patients due to the discretion that they offer. The brackets on clear braces can be larger and easier to break than metal brackets, so more care may be needed when taking care of your teeth during your treatment.
Getting to know the process
Before we ever put your braces on you, our friendly team will collect digital x-rays, photos and a model of your mouth. Using that information, we will create a treatment plan personalized to your particular orthodontic needs. Your plan will include information about the specific movements that each tooth needs to make to achieve its best positioning and will determine how your brackets will need to be placed.
Once attached, a wire will be inserted into your brackets in order to provide pressure on all of the teeth needing to be moved. Through a process we call remodeling, which gradually moves your teeth into their proper positions, the bends in the wire will encourage specific, precise teeth movements. In addition to moving your teeth, the process also involves minor changes in the bone surrounding your teeth's roots. When you braces apply pressure to teeth, cells called osteoblasts and osteoclasts form around their roots. This works together with the wire to create negative pressure on one side of the tooth, where bone will be removed. On the other side of the tooth, the bone is reformed.
Remodeling requires constant pressure on the tooth. This means your teeth will often begin drifting back towards their old positions over time once your braces are removed. This means the regular use of a retainer is required to help prevent this natural drifting and keep teeth in their new and improved positions!
Your best personal care is our top priority
At Dougherty Orthodontics, we believe that advanced, personalized care leads to the best results and most positive orthodontic experience. Using our leading-edge techniques and state-of-the-art technology, we will provide efficient, comfortable care that will help you change both your life and your smile. We focus on patients as individuals, no matter the age, personal concerns, or clinical needs. When you choose braces treatment with our practice, we will create a treatment plan that works with your life.
Schedule a free consultation with us today to get started!