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Your Top-Rated Orthodontist in
Charleston, SC, For Braces & Invisalign

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Same-Day Starts, Braces, and Consultations Available!

Your Top-Rated Orthodontist in
Charleston, SC, For Braces & Invisalign

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Types of Braces: The Ultimate Guide

Braces with cumbersome metal brackets and wires used to be the standard treatment for anyone who wanted a straighter smile or corrected bite. However, not only are metal braces far more streamlined now, but there are five types of braces that patients can choose from. Use this the ultimate guide to the types of braces to determine which option may be right for you!

Want to find out if you or your child needs braces? Visit Reese Orthodontics in Charleston, SC for leading orthodontic care.

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Metal Braces

Metal braces are the traditional form of braces. With this option, brackets are fastened to the front of patients’ teeth and connected by an archwire. This wire exerts gradual pressure that, over time, can correct crookedness, gaps, and other alignment issues, including bite problems.

At subsequent appointments, orthodontists can adjust the wire to keep the patient’s teeth on schedule. These appointments are usually scheduled once every month or two months. Thankfully, these braces are no longer nearly as bulky as they used to be, incorporating an elastic tie that connects the wire and makes them more easily adjustable.

Who Should Get Them?

Metal braces provide the most affordable treatment option for anyone that needs braces. They can also correct issues faster than other methods, further reducing the total cost. The worst part about them is the fact that they are the most physically obvious and cumbersome. They are not typically the most comfortable option.

Self-ligating Braces

These are perhaps the least-known type of braces. Self-ligating braces look similar to traditional metal braces. However, they use self-ligating clips instead of elastic bands. This makes them easier to adjust. They use an archwire to gradually move teeth to the correct position just like conventional braces do.

Who Should Get Them?

Squirmy patients, such as young children or those with sensitivity to pain, could take advantage of the fact that self-ligating braces can be adjusted more quickly and easily. This results in shorter adjustment appointments and less discomfort.

Ceramic Braces

Although they are the same shape and size as conventional metal braces, ceramic braces consist of ceramic, clear brackets that hide their appearance. Some have adopted clear wires as well that further blend ceramic braces into the teeth. Otherwise, they are very similar to traditional braces.

Who Should Get Them?

People who have careers that make getting obvious braces more of a hassle, such as those in a customer service profession, may want to opt for a less visually obstructive option. Unfortunately, ceramic braces are more expensive than metal ones and stain more easily, so patients need to prepare for a little extra upkeep. However, ceramic braces move teeth as quickly as metal braces, which reduces treatment time compared to Invisalign.


Clear plastic retainers, also called Invisalign, are quickly becoming the most popular choice for new patients when it comes to braces. The major selling point for Invisalign is that they are clear and nearly invisible (with the right care). They also pop in and out so you can eat in comfort, clean them, and put them back on.

Who Should Get Them?

Invisalign is nearly invisible in your mouth, so those who are particular about their appearance may prefer this option. However, they are usually more expensive than conventional braces. In addition, not everyone can wear them, as they can fix some alignment issues but not all bite problems. Speak with your orthodontist about the options that are best for you.

Lingual Braces

Lingual braces can be worn instead of braces or after treatment to permanently hold teeth in place rather than relying on temporary plastic retainers. They fasten to the backside of teeth instead of the front, making them invisible but also a little uncomfortable. It takes a while to get used to your tongue interacting with them.

Who Should Get Them?

 Lingual braces can feel strange, so those with sensitive tongues or who are easily distracted by foreign objects in their mouth may not prefer them. They provide invisibility, however, and can fix some (not all) of the problems conventional braces can. However, they are typically the most expensive option of them all, which is important to consider before starting this treatment.

Choose Reese Orthodontics

If you’re debating which type of braces you should get, you need professional advice on your treatment options. For orthodontic care in Charleston, SC, Reese Orthodontics offers the latest technology and treatment plans. Our advanced and comfortable orthodontic options can be customized to suit your needs. A consultation with Reese Orthodontics includes scans, a comprehensive exam, and a conversation with the orthodontist to discover which treatments are right for you. 

Schedule an appointment with us today to stay ahead of your oral health and receive the best possible care in your area.

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Easy Ways To Get Started

If you want to learn more about our orthodontic practice - where we offer extensive experience with a Board Certified Orthodontist, where we offer a satisfaction guarantee, and where we offer flexible payment options - Reese Orthodontics is here to serve you.

"Dr. Reese and staff share an inviting personality with a clean and professional atmosphere. I am very happy with the service, the product and the final result. I would encourage any of my friends and family to consult with Dr. Reese around their Orthodontic needs."
- Austin H.
"It has been a great experience all around getting braces at Dr. Reese Orthodontics. It's a great office with wonderful and friendly staff. I am extremely happy with the results. Can't say enough good things about Dr. Reese and his staff. I highly recommend him!"
- Nicole S.
"Dr. Reese and his staff was referred to me by a friend, and I highly recommend them! They were friendly, professional, helpful and quick to respond. I could not be happier with the results of Invisalign. I wore them about 7 months and my teeth are as straight as can be. Thank you for the great care and results!"
- Dancy E.
"I chose the absolute perfect orthodontist to perfect my smile. Dr. Reese has a personality that calms you and removes the anxiety that may come with the process. Dr. Reese is a true artist. I am so excited with my new smile. Dr. Reese accomplished the goals I was looking for and I am forever grateful. Thank you Dr. Reese!!!"
- Melanie C.
"Just awesome! Dr. Reese is the one to go to. He knows what he's doing and is great at what he does. Makes you feel like family every time you go visit. I can't get over how great my smile looks now. Definitely recommended."
- Harsha P.
*The reviews listed are from actual patients of Reese Orthodontics.
Individual results may vary. Reviews are not claimed to represent results for everyone.
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reese orthodontics west ashley sc

Our Charleston
Orthodontic Office

2057 Charlie Hall Blvd. STE D
Charleston, SC 29414


Office Hours:

Monday - Thursday: 8:00AM - 5:00PM

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Dr. Reese McElveen, our award-winning orthodontist in Charleston, South Carolina has transformed the smiles of over 11,000 patients. Reese Orthodontics offers the most advanced orthodontic care for children and adults. Types of braces and orthodontic treatment include metal braces, clear braces, gold braces, Invisalign, Invisalign Teen, Damon Braces, SureSmile. Dr. Reese can even help you achieve your confident smile faster with AcceleDent.

Call 843.573.7279 today to schedule your appointment with our board certified orthodontist in Charleston, SC, at our conveniently located Charleston orthodontic office. Come experience Reese Orthodontics and you will see for yourself that we offer innovative and effective orthodontic care in Charleston, Downtown Charleston, West Ashley, James Island, Mount Pleasant, North Charleston, Johns Island, Goose Creek, Hanahan and Ladson, South Carolina (SC).