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Lingual braces are gaining popularity in recent years, due to their discreteness but also their excellent straightening abilities. For many adults and children who need the strength and robustness of a metal brace, lingual braces provide the perfect solution. However, as with all brace treatments, lingual braces come with pros and cons that differ for everyone. Let’s look at what lingual braces are, how they work, and if you can expect to be wearing them for a significant amount of time longer than their visible, metal counterparts.

What Are Lingual Braces and How Do They Work?

Lingual braces, though less conspicuous, share the same fundamental principles as traditional braces. Both employ brackets and wires to gradually move teeth into their desired positions. The key difference lies in placement—lingual braces are fixed to the back of the teeth, making them virtually invisible when you smile. The term “lingual” references the tongue, so the lingual side of the teeth is the side that faces the tongue.

The treatment process for lingual braces is very much the same as traditional metal braces. Your orthodontist will make impressions of your teeth and map out the journey your teeth will take to get into their proper alignment. These impressions will then get sent over to a dental lab where your customised brackets will be created.

How Long Can You Expect to Wear Lingual Braces? 

The amount of time you can expect to wear any type of brace depends on the type and severity of your dental problem, alongside whether any forms of dental work need to be carried out first. On average, a traditional, fixed metal brace will be worn from around 18 months to 2 years, compared to lingual braces, which are worn on average for around 18 to 36 months.

So lingual braces, on average, are worn for a slightly longer period but again, the complexity of your case will determine your treatment time. It is also dependent on individual preferences. Some may have minor dental problems which can be fixed relatively quickly, meaning the patient may opt for a quicker treatment path of traditional metal braces. Others may have a more complex dental issue that requires lengthier treatment. They may opt for lingual braces, knowing they will have to wear their braces longer, they may want them to be more discreet.

Factors that Affect Treatment Length.

As mentioned previously, the complexity of dental issues will be a factor determining whether lingual braces are suitable for an individual. There are also other factors that come into play that can be different for each patient.

Patient Response

Each person’s body responds differently to orthodontic forces. Some individuals may experience faster tooth movement, while others may require a more gradual approach. This factor is not exclusive to lingual braces but is applicable to all orthodontic treatments.

Diligence in Oral Care

Maintaining optimal oral hygiene is crucial during orthodontic treatment. Lingual braces are more challenging to clean than traditional braces and may require extra effort. Proper care can influence treatment time by preventing complications like decay or gum issues.

Appointments and Adjustments

Both lingual and traditional braces require periodic adjustments to ensure that teeth progress according to the treatment plan. The frequency of these adjustments, as well as the accuracy of the orthodontist’s interventions, can impact the overall treatment duration.

Technological Advances

Technological advancements in orthodontics, such as the use of advanced materials and computer-assisted treatment planning, have streamlined the orthodontic process. Lingual braces have benefited from these innovations, potentially reducing treatment times.

Lingual Braces VS. Traditional Braces. 

  Traditional Lingual
Discreetness Visible, metal brackets and wires are attached to the front of the teeth. Customisable with colour bands. Metal brackets are placed behind the teeth, making them virtually invisible.
Speech Can affect speech but not as profound as lingual. Can affect speech but patients adjust to them in a few weeks.
Cost The cheaper option as they require less time and effort from the orthodontist. More expensive as they need more attention and experience from the orthodontist, for a longer period.
Maintenance Meticulousness and dedication are needed to brush, floss, and eat the right foods. Meticulousness and dedication are still needed to brush, floss, and eat the right foods but a little extra effort is needed in cleaning due to placement.
Treatment Length 18 to 24 months 18 to 36 months


Which Brace Treatment is Right for You?

Deciding on the best treatment for you will come from a detailed conversation with your orthodontist about which options are open to you, your case, and what your preferences may be. No one method is more successful than the other, both are extremely reliable forms of treatment. To make an informed decision, we recommend booking a free consultation with Darwen Orthodontics, your expert orthodontist in Darwen. 

Darwen Orthodontics: Your Specialist Orthodontist in Darwen.

We are a specialist orthodontic practice based in Darwen, Blackburn, made up of a team of friendly, passionate, and enthusiastic professionals, working toward providing the best orthodontic care. Our variety of specialist-led orthodontic treatments can help you achieve the beautiful smile you’ve always dreamed of.

We have extensive knowledge in both traditional and lingual braces along with the ability to provide you with guidance on treatments and procedures prior to braces treatment. So come and speak to us today, your specialist orthodontist in Darwen, to find out how you can achieve the smile of your dreams.

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