Braces are the most common way to straighten teeth, but wearing them can be a long and painful process. There are ways to obtain that perfect smile without the use of braces, so if braces aren't for you then one of these other methods may just be the ideal solution.
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Consider Invisalign instead of traditional braces. The Invisalign system uses a series of retainer-like mouthpieces to shape your teeth. Results usually take about a year to obtain. Note, however, that this method works best for those whose teeth misalignment is relatively minor.
Have veneers applied to your teeth to instantly cover old imperfections and give you a perfect smile without any painful teeth straightening at all. Veneers come in porcelain and composite, each with its own advantages and drawbacks. If this is an option you are interesting in, talk with your dentist about which veneer would be best for you.
Opt for cosmetic contouring if you have problems with teeth overcrowding. This process, which is relatively pain-free, involves the reshaping of your teeth through a series of procedures performed by a cosmetic dentist. The process generally involves 1 to 3 visits to your dentist.
Choose a removable orthodontic appliance if the extent of needed correction is fairly limited. This technique generally only works on the top teeth. There are some other rather substantial drawbacks to this method, and not everyone will be a candidate, but it can be a viable option for someone who wants to avoid braces.
Ask your dentist or orthodontist whether your teeth can be corrected merely by wearing a specially designed retainer. This method would only work for someone who needs very minor corrections. Someone who has already had braces but has experienced some shifting in their teeth may be a good candidate for this.
Tips and warnings
- If you decide that braces are the right choice for you but still want something a little less conspicuous, try going for clear braces or ones that are placed on the backside of the teeth.
- Braces, for the most part, are still the fastest and most effective way to straighten teeth, especially if the degree of teeth misalignment is moderate to severe. Ask your dentist or orthodontist about the teeth straightening method that will work best for you.