Types of Braces

Dr. Emi attending to a young patient in her Everett WA office

Metal Braces

Traditional metal braces are the most common type, and are more comfortable today than ever before. Made of high-grade stainless steel, they straighten your teeth using metal brackets and archwires. With metal braces, you have the option of adding colored elastics (rubber bands) for a more unique and colorful smile.

Self-Ligating Braces

Self-ligating braces are made from the same materials as traditional braces. However, self-ligating braces do not require the use of elastics, meaning fewer appointments and less friction on the tooth. They braces come with traditional metal, ceramic, or clear brackets. They are the same size as metal braces, but use a specialized clip in place of elastics to help the archwire guide teeth into place. The clip helps reduce the amount of pressure being placed on the tooth, and requires fewer adjustments because there are no elastics to replace.

Clear (Ceramic) Braces

Ceramic braces are made of clear materials and are therefore less visible on your teeth than metal braces. For this reason, ceramic braces are used mainly on older teenagers and adult patients who have cosmetic concerns. While they are visually less prominent, they require more attention to oral hygiene because ceramic braces are larger and more brittle than their metal counterparts. For these reasons, ceramic braces tend to be used more on upper front teeth than on lower teeth.

Invisalign Clear Aligners

Clear aligners are a series of invisible, removable, and comfortable trays that straighten your teeth like braces. Not only are the aligners invisible, they are removable, so you can eat and drink what you want while in treatment; plus, brushing and flossing are less of a hassle. The aligners are comfortable and have no metal to cause mouth abrasions during treatment.

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