People get braces to get a more attractive smile, but that’s not what braces do. Braces straighten your teeth. Often, that can make your smile more attractive, but sometimes it won’t. And sometimes there are side effects of braces that can be unattractive.
It can be very frustrating to spend a year or more in braces and then not be happy with the results. Fortunately, you don’t have to be unhappy if your braces didn’t give you the results you wanted: you can still get the smile of your dreams.
Why Straightening Your Teeth May Not Be Enough
If you had crooked teeth, that was probably all you noticed when you looked at your smile. You probably thought, “I have crooked teeth. If my teeth were straighter, my smile would be beautiful.”
But once your teeth were straightened, you realized that there were other problems with the appearance of your teeth. Maybe they’re discolored. Maybe your teeth are too short or narrow. Or maybe they are poorly shaped. They may even be chipped, cracked, or worn down as a result of imbalanced bite forces.
All these issues can be addressed with different approaches. For discolored teeth, teeth whitening is typically very effective. For other problems–and for teeth that don’t respond to whitening–porcelain veneers can be very effective. Porcelain veneers can effectively reshape your teeth, making them longer, wider, and even repairing damage from chipping and wearing.
Side Effects of Braces
On the other hand, sometimes your results don’t look good because of braces. Braces can be hard on your teeth, and sometimes the impact of that is visible.
Because braces are so hard to clean around, people with braces may have tooth decay and/or gum disease because of the treatment. Tooth-colored fillings can make decayed tooth look attractive and healthy again. Gum disease treatment can restore gums to a healthy, attractive appearance, too.
Another problem people find after braces is that they have white spot lesions. These demineralized areas can show up where the brackets were bonded. That’s because your teeth aren’t exposed to remineralizing saliva while the braces are bonded. Sometimes white spot lesions will blend well with teeth after whitening. Other times, we may remove them by abrading them off if they’re shallow. Porcelain veneers can also be used to conceal these lesions.
Consider Other Options
If you are considering braces to straighten your teeth, it’s important to be aware of these potential problems and consider whether a different treatment option might be right for you.
Instant orthodontics, for example, doesn’t move your teeth: it reshapes them. This can not only make your teeth look straight, but it can also take care of problems like discoloration, chipping, wear, and poorly shaped teeth.
Invisalign is another way to straighten teeth without braces. Although it moves your teeth similar to the way braces do, the removable aligners and fewer appliances bonded to your teeth can reduce or eliminate side effects of braces.
To learn more about teeth straightening options or fixing the side effects of braces in Houston, please call (281) 367-5559 today for an appointment with cosmetic dentist Dr. Scott Young, Purveyor of Fine Dentistry in The Woodlands.