How Do Braces Move Teeth?

Braces are an incredible orthodontic appliance that can completely transform smiles for a lifetime. But how do they move teeth and resolve oral issues? The Dr. Lili & Associates team is here with the answers you are looking for. Read on to learn more about how braces shape your smile, how to ensure they stay in perfect condition, and more!

Shaping Your Smile Through Braces

Braces have the power to perfectly align your teeth by exerting constant pressure on your teeth and gums to shift them over a long period. This appliance functions with the help of brackets, elastics, wires, bonding cement, and other components, all working together toward your smile goals. They can fix any oral issue, no matter how complex. 

The placement of brackets is one of many factors determining the effectiveness of your treatment. Dr. Lili and Dr. Wu carefully review your diagnostic materials, such as your 3D teeth model and x-rays, to choose the best place for them to lay. The archwire, threaded through your brackets, does most of the alignment work by placing pressure on your teeth to shift them in the right direction. 

As your treatment continues, the wire’s position may need to change, which can be accomplished during your follow-up appointments through a series of adjustments and tightenings as our team better understands how your teeth react to the pressure exerted by your braces.

Your bones and gum tissue react to this pressure and daily shift by remodeling themselves to keep your teeth safe and establish a permanent position. Upon finishing treatment, Dr. Lili & Associates will provide you with a retainer to ensure your teeth stay in their ideal position long-term. Follow the wear instructions our orthodontists provide, and you can expect your beautiful new smile to last a lifetime!

Does Treatment Hurt?

We are glad to share braces do not cause any pain to our patients! Occasional discomfort or soreness may arise after your initial placement appointment or following adjustments and tightenings, but nothing is long-term and shouldn’t last longer than a week. Our team can provide you with resources to proactively treat any potential discomfort, such as orthodontic wax and recommend over-the-counter pain medication. You can always contact our front desk if you need assistance.

How Do Braces Move Teeth?

How to Keep Your Braces in Perfect Condition

Just as you regularly care for your teeth, you can take steps to ensure your braces remain in ideal condition throughout treatment so your treatment stays on track. Daily maintenance may require extra time set aside each day, but we can help make things as easy as possible.

Making Conscious Food Choices

Braces come with some food restrictions as they are not able to withstand the pressure of chewing hard, crunchy, or sticky items. Foods such as fresh veggies, chips, popcorn, hard cookies, and nuts will need to stay in your pantry for the span of treatment. 

If your favorite meal is among those listed, we promise the wait will be worth it. Instead, Dr. Lili and Dr. Wu recommend a soft diet, including pasta, soups, mashed potatoes, chicken, yogurt, and other delicious items. You may even find a new go-to snack or meal! 

Attend Your Follow-Ups 

Dr. Lili and Dr. Wu dedicate follow-up appointments to ensure everything is in excellent condition and your treatment plan is on schedule. They and our team replace old elastics, make wire adjustments or tightenings as necessary, and provide tips for effective treatment. One of our priorities is for your time with us to be as comfortable and efficient as possible so you can enjoy your brand-new smile before you know it!

Everyday Upkeep

Maintaining everyday oral care is an essential step in ensuring successful treatment. During the start of treatment, while hard-to-reach areas in your mouth are still present, more effort will be needed to thoroughly brush every corner with your toothbrush. Tiny food particles will be more likely to get stuck between your appliance and your teeth. In addition to your morning and nightly routine, we recommend keeping a toothbrush handy after meals to eliminate any lingering plaque or bacteria during the day.

The Benefits of an Aligned Smile

With an aligned smile, you can look forward to an incredible boost in confidence in your everyday life. Having the perfect grin you deserve will encourage you to smile more often and display your happiness in public without worrying about what others may think. Hiding your smile can negatively affect your overall satisfaction and stop you from putting yourself out there.

Some patients initially believe any work on your smile is all about aesthetics. However, braces are the perfect opportunity to improve your general health. Many experience smoother digestion from improved bite function, enjoy easier oral maintenance by ridding their mouth of hard-to-reach sections and improve speech patterns by adjusting the natural position of their tongue.

Your Treatment Options

Metal Self-Ligating Braces

Dr. Lili & Associates is proud to provide metal self-ligating braces, a reliable appliance that remains popular among our patients. Self-ligating braces refer to the built-in slide mechanism it utilizes to hold the archwire in place on your brackets. This reduces friction and irritation during care so that you can expect fewer appointments and faster treatment. They can fix any oral issue, no matter how complex.

Clear Braces

For those looking for an aesthetic alternative, we also offer clear braces. They use the same technology as their metal counterpart but have tooth-colored components, including nearly invisible ceramic brackets, that blend in with your smile. Clear braces are also staining-resistant, so you don’t have to worry about how your morning cup of coffee might change the color of your appliance.

How Do Braces Move Teeth?

Feel Great About Your Smile!

At Dr. Lili & Associates, our top priority is your comfort and ensuring you feel confident in your treatment with us. We provide free consultations to patients in Anaheim, El Monte, Huntington Park, Lawndale, Los Angeles, Santa Ana, Whittier, and the surrounding Southern California communities. Schedule yours today and get started on life-changing treatment. We can’t wait to meet you!