Metal brackets

metalbracketsMetal brackets are very strong and can withstand most types of treatment. At first they may irritate your gums, but after a few weeks, when your cheeks get “toughened up” they are not a problem anymore. Most traditional metal braces require an elastic o-shaped rubber band, called a ligature, to hold the arch wire onto the bracket. Sometimes orthodontists use metal tie wires (little wires which are twisted around the bracket) in place of elastic ligatures. Metal brackets tend to be less expensive than other types of brackets. In addition, you can make them colorful with ligatures that come in a rainbow of colors. They are very strong and generally do not stain. Adults like to choose ceramic because they “blend in” with the teeth and are less noticeable than metal. The ligatures (tiny rubber bands) that hold the arch wire on to the ceramic brackets are often white or clear. This looks great at first, but the ligatures can stain. Unless you eat a lot of curry, smoke, or drink a lot of black coffee, this generally isn’t a problem. Note: the ligatures are changed each time you get an adjustment — usually, monthly. It’s only the ligatures that stain, not the brackets themselves