Braces are no longer just for kids. For cosmetic and health reasons, many adults turn to braces to straighten their smile, correct bite problems, or increase their oral hygiene. However, this means that people who have received treatments in the past, such as crowns or implants, may be concerned about how their new braces will affect these old treatments. Read on to learn the basics of getting braces as an adult with prior dental work.
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Types of Braces
Before learning how prior treatments can affect braces, you may be wondering what kind you should get in the first place. This will help you weigh the potential risks against the benefits. Here’s a brief rundown of the two main types of braces:
- Metal or Ceramic (Clear) braces are conventional braces. They use wires and brackets to slowly move teeth into new positions. Orthodontists can supplement them with rubber bands to help with your bite. They can also apply partial braces on only the top or bottom row of teeth as the patient needs.
- Invisalign aligners are made from molds or a scan of the patient’s teeth. You change the alingers as treatment progresses and are meant to be taken out to eat. This option isn’t as visually obvious.
The treatment you receive will affect how the braces may impact your prior dental work.
What are Crowns, Implants, and Veneers?
It’s also important to understand the nature of your prior dental treatment:
- Crowns cover the teeth that have decayed when fillings can’t be used due to the amount of damage. They can also replace sections of a broken tooth.
- Implants attach directly to your jawbone. They replace teeth that have decayed and need to be removed. Many older patients have dental implants, which stay in place even as their teeth naturally move as they age. A crown must be placed on top of the implant.
- Veneers are used to cover chips, stains, or gaps. They are created with layers of porcelain that mimic the appearance of a real tooth and adhere to the front of your teeth.
All three of these dental treatments differently affect how viable braces will be as an ongoing solution to a patient’s issues.
Metal Braces with Crowns, Implants, and Veneers
Here is how each of the above dental treatments will be impacted by metal braces:
- Crowns will not be disturbed by your treatment. So long as your crowns are still secure, braces can adhere to the surface of the tooth without affecting them.
- Dental implants can make getting metal braces more complicated. Since dental implants attach to the jawbone, they can’t be moved or adjusted with braces. This means that they should not be placed till after the patient has undergone braces treatment.
- Veneers also present a risk when considering braces. Attaching metal brackets to veneers can crack or damage them due to how delicate they are.
While crowns shouldn’t get in the way, other treatments, particularly those on the front of your teeth, can be damaged by braces. Ask your orthodontist when it comes to veneers and implants before getting metal braces.
Invisalign with Crowns, Implants, and Veneers
An Invisalign aligner represents far less risk to crowns, implants, and veneers for one reason: it doesn’t adhere to your teeth. By fitting over your teeth, it won’t disturb or damage veneers placed on the front. Healthy crowns will stay in place as well.
Aligners can move teeth around implants but can not move the implants and attached crowns.
This means that ideally, braces and aligners should be worn before veneers or implants are placed. Otherwise, they may need to be removed before your orthodontic treatment.
If you already have veneers or implants, you may be wondering about your options in terms of braces and Invisalign. Your orthodontist can place brackets on your veneers using a special adhesive. They will then precisely remove them so they don’t crack or damage the veneer.
Invisalign offers a safer option for those with pre-existing dental treatments. To achieve uniform treatment and protect your implants, clear retainers can lower the risks while still correcting your smile.
Choose Reese Orthodontics
It is still possible for you to get braces with crowns or implants. If you’re ready to discuss your options, contact Reese Orthodontics in Charleston, SC today. Our treatments can be customized to suit your needs, including new braces that can work around your prior dental treatments. Schedule a consultation with us to receive scans, a comprehensive exam, and a conversation with the orthodontist. Discover which treatment options are right for you based on your prior work!