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As a family dentist in Houston and South Houston specializing in dental braces, patients often ask us what they can do in order to get the most out of their Houston braces treatment. In this article, our dentists will offer advice on how to best take care of your teeth while undergoing treatment so you can be proud of your beautiful smile for years to come.

Keep Up With Proper Oral Hygiene

When wearing dental braces, you might become more prone to cavities due to the fact that the braces may be “in the way” when you’re trying to keep your teeth clean. In order to minimize your risk of tooth decay, we encourage our Houston braces patients to follow a stricter braces hygiene routine

A stricter hygiene routine entails the following:

  • Swishing water in your mouth after every snack and meal
  • Thoroughly brushing your teeth after eating each of your snacks and meals
  • Using an interdental brush to remove any food from between your teeth and wires until you floss that night. Please remember that an interdental brush is not a substitute for flossing. 
  • Flossing nightly

By following these steps down to a T, your smile will be healthy while you wear braces and shine brighter when the metal braces come off.

Get Regular Teeth Cleanings

It’s no secret that teeth cleanings are critical to your dental health as a whole, but this is especially true when you wear metal dental braces so that our team can give you a deeper clean than you would get at home. Additionally, a cleaning enables us to check on your oral health beyond how your teeth are shifting. 

We accept several dental insurances, but know that your dental benefits (coverage for certain treatments) will expire at the end of the month. Now is your last chance to book a dental cleaning while your insurance still covers it.

Avoid Certain Textured And Sticky Foods

Your Houston braces, though very tough when it comes to straightening your teeth, are sensitive to damage. Sticky foods, such as bubble gum, or crunchy foods, such as popcorn or chips, must be avoided when you wear your braces, or else your archwire could pop out of place and cause you a great deal of discomfort while also hindering the treatment process.

Our Family Dentists In Houston And South Houston Want to Ensure Effective Treatment

If you are planning to undergo metal Houston braces treatment, or have recently started treatment, then this blog should be helpful in making certain that you have impressive results following the end of your treatment. Please also make sure to book an appointment with us so we can clean your teeth, answer any questions you may have about your treatment, and examine the health of your teeth and mouth before your dental benefits expire.

Approximately 4 million Americans wear braces at any given time in order to fix what is classified as a malocclusion. A malocclusion is what we call a “bad bite”, such as crowded teeth, underbites, and overbites. Metal dental braces are an effective and affordable method our dentists in Houston and South Houston use to correct a malocclusion, especially for younger children who prefer to take advantage of early Houston braces treatment. In this article, we will discuss how metal dental braces work so you and your child know what to expect.

What Are Metal Braces Made Of?

Our metal Houston braces feature 3 key components:

  • Metal brackets, which are glued to the front of the teeth with a semipermanent dental cement
  • Archwire, which is placed across the brackets
  • O-rings, which keep the archwire attached to the metal brackets

How Houston Braces Straighten Your Child’s Teeth

Our Houston and South Houston family dentists offer metal braces that are thinner (and therefore far lighter in weight) than most other metal braces available. 

All types of Houston braces that we offer do the same job in principle: they apply pressure to the teeth, which gradually moves them to their desired position. When it comes to metal dental braces, our South Houston braces dentist will tighten the archwire on a regular basis. Tightening the archwire in a certain way helps push the teeth in the direction we intend for them to go, thanks to the help of our state-of-the-art 3D modeling software.

In some cases, especially if you have an overbite or an underbite, we will incorporate rubber bands into your Houston braces treatment.

Is Your Child Ready For Houston Braces? Centra Dental Is Your Go-To Braces Expert!

Whether you are in Houston or South Houston, our family dentists are here for your dental braces needs. We offer affordable dental braces for as low as $99/month and our caring staff and advanced technology ensure that you have the best possible experience every time you visit us. If you think your child might benefit from metal dental braces, then please book an appointment with us at one of our offices so we can begin with a braces consultation. We look forward to embracing your smile!

You may have seen ceramic and metal dental braces patients wearing rubber bands at some point during the course of their treatment. If you or your child is about to undergo Houston braces treatment at one of our family dentist offices in Houston and South Houston, then you might be wondering if you (or your child) will also have to wear rubber bands. In this article, we will answer this question while also explaining the importance of rubber bands. 

What Are Rubber Bands Used For

Rubber bands are primarily used as a way to correct your bite, specifically if you have an overbite or an underbite. These rubber bands apply additional pressure to your jaw in order to guide it to the right placement in a more accelerated manner than your braces would without rubber bands.  

Wearing Rubber Bands With Your Dental Braces

Because rubber bands accelerate the correction of your malocclusion, getting to this phase in your Houston braces treatment is a pretty big, exciting deal! They are a major milestone in your overall treatment, but not everyone has to wear rubber bands. Typically, if our Houston braces patients don’t have an overbite or underbite, but do experience crowding in their teeth, then they may not need rubber bands. However, they are still an option that we will recommend based on each individual patient case. 

Similar to wearing retainers after braces, it is critical to the success of your treatment that you wear your rubber bands as directed if you want to complete your braces treatment on time (or, in some cases, earlier!). Most of the time, our South Houston family dentists recommend you wear your rubber bands at least 10-12 hours a day, but in some cases, we recommend wearing them for 24 hours except for when you’re eating, brushing your teeth, and flossing. It isn’t rare for patients to begin wearing bands 24/7 and then switch to just a few hours a day.

Our Houston Family Dentists Will Recommend Rubber Bands If Your Treatment Requires It

If you’re about to undergo braces treatment, or if you are curious about if/when you might need rubber bands, then please book an appointment with us so we can perform a teeth cleaning before your dental benefits expire and evaluate your bite before making a recommendation. We can’t wait to embrace your smile!

After Houston braces, our patients have to wear orthodontic appliances known as retainers in order to maintain the new alignment of their teeth. There are several types of retainers available, each with different pros and cons. However, they all have one thing in common besides protecting your teeth from shifting again: they need to be worn properly in order to maximize their effectiveness. When you wear your retainers and take proper care of them, your teeth will be straight and healthy for years and years to come!

Wearing Your Retainers As Instructed

We understand that wearing retainers after finishing Houston braces treatment is quite the dread, but it is absolutely critical if you want to enjoy your brand new smile for years to come. Otherwise, your teeth will quickly go back to their old, misaligned position. We typically recommend that our patients at our Houston and South Houston family dentist offices wear their retainers for 24 hours a day (except when eating) for at least 6 months to a year. However, this will depend on the individual. Once this initial time period is over, you should wear your retainers every night while you sleep.

Cleaning Your Orthodontic Retainers

There are different types of retainers available to our patients. Much like our Houston braces, which type we recommend to you depends on your particular case. Since you spend much of your time wearing your retainers in the first phase, they will collect whatever is on your teeth, including bacteria, plaque, and tartar. If illness-causing bacteria such as streptococcus is left to accumulate on your retainers, you may get sick with an infection, so it is imperative you clean them every day. 

Traditional Hawley retainers and transparent removable retainers may be brushed with a soft-bristle toothbrush after each meal. You may also be able to soak your retainers in a cleaning solution, but be sure to ask us for recommendations so you’re keeping your retainers in tip-top condition. We can also discuss how long you should soak them for, as you don’t want to soak them too long. Soaking Hawley retainers for too long may corrode the metal components.

Bonded retainers, on the other hand, are best cleaned by flossing them when you floss your teeth since this type of retainer is glued to the back of your teeth. Our Houston and South Houston family dentists will be more than happy to teach you the proper flossing technique as well.

Visit Our Family Dentist In Houston And South Houston To Learn About Proper Retainer Care

If you are about to wear retainers or have been wearing them for some time, then please book an appointment with us so we can check on your alignment and assess how well you are taking care of your teeth. We will help keep your perfect smile for years to come!

Approaching the end of your Houston braces treatment is an exciting feeling because you will be able to show off a gorgeous smile really soon! However, giving you a new smile doesn’t just finish there. In fact, once your treatment is completed, you will have to switch to wearing orthodontic retainers for an extended period of time, but don’t worry–they are more flexible than dental braces. In this article, we will explain the importance of wearing retainers after your Houston braces treatment.

Your Teeth Will Tend To Shift Again

Both children and adults who wear braces will experience this. This occurs because the teeth haven’t had a chance to fully settle into the soft tissues of your mouth. Remember that, for at least an entire year, your teeth have been 100% reliant on metal, ceramic, or even plastic from your Invisalign Clear Aligners in order to hold them in place. To mitigate this and let them settle into their new alignment, you should wear your retainers day and night for at least a year, but this will also depend on the individual’s case.

Retainers Protect Your Investment

Wearing retainers after completing your Invisalign, metal, or ceramic Houston braces treatment is a sure way to make your investment in your smile well worth it. As we age, our teeth naturally try to shift again, and as frustrating as this is, remember that your dental braces prevented (or got rid of) some serious complications with your dental health. By diligently wearing your retainers day and night and then transitioning to only wearing them most nights, you will strengthen your teeth so they remain straight and healthy for years and years to come. You might even get to enjoy your new, perfectly aligned smile for the rest of your life.

Get Fitted For Retainers at Centra Dental In Houston And South Houston

When you’re near the end of your Houston braces treatment, please book an appointment with us so we can confirm that you’re ready for your braces to be removed soon. At this appointment, we will also take impressions of your new smile so we can fit you for your retainers and educate you and how to wear them. We can’t wait to embrace your smile!

Most people associate orthodontic appliances such as braces with younger children and teenagers, but adults can–and should–wear braces as well if they have a malocclusion! In this article, we will explain why adults should get Houston braces and break down the different options we offer for our adult patients.

What Is A Malocclusion?

We use the term “malocclusion” to refer to a “bad bite”. There are different kinds of malocclusions, such as overbites, underbites, and even crowding teeth. Even though Houston braces are seen as a way to make some cosmetic upgrades to your smile, this is only a small part of our overall Houston braces treatment at our Houston and South Houston family dentist offices. The main reason people need to undergo Houston braces treatment is that an untreated malocclusion leads to other lifelong dental health problems.

What Problems Does A Bad Bite Cause?

If a malocclusion isn’t corrected, the following are some of the complications that may follow:

  • Migraines
  • Tooth decay
  • Gum disease
  • Lisp
  • Difficulty chewing and digesting food

Our Houston Braces Can Correct A Bad Bite And Promote Healthy Teeth

Our Houston family dentist, which treats families in Houston and South Houston, offers three types of dental braces treatments: Invisalign, Ceramic Dental Braces, and Metal Dental Braces.

Invisalign Clear Aligners

As their name suggests, Invisalign Clear Aligners are transparent. Invisalign treatment consists of clear trays that are molded differently in order to match up with your teeth as they shift. Over the course of treatment, the plastic aligners will gradually shift your teeth to the correct alignment. Though suitable for mostly mild cases, there are some benefits and drawbacks of Invisalign for adults to consider.

Ceramic Dental Braces

Our ceramic South Houston braces are designed to blend in with the natural color of the teeth, thanks to the ceramic brackets that are cemented to the teeth. This type of Houston braces treatment is efficient in treating moderate cases and is rather comparable to metal Houston braces.

Metal Houston Braces

Metal Houston braces are the traditional type of braces treatment that we recommend, as they have been available since the 19th century, with major updates since then. Metal dental braces are the most versatile braces treatment for adults.

Adult Dental Braces at Centra Dental

If you’re an adult who wants to improve the appearance of your smile while simultaneously promoting good oral health, then please book an appointment with us at our Houston or South Houston offices so we can begin with your Houston braces evaluation. We look forward to embracing your smile!

Our South Houston family dentist offers a few different Houston braces treatments, including metal dental braces and ceramic dental braces, but in recent years patients have taken a greater interest in our Invisalign Clear Aligners–and for good reason! In this blog, we will break down the pros and cons of Invisalign so you are well-aware of the different options available at our Houston and South Houston offices.

Pros Of Invisalign

Invisalign has “pros” that outweigh the cons for most of our patients, such as:

Increased Flexibility

Unlike metal and ceramic Houston braces, which we bond to the teeth with a dental cement that can only be removed by a dentist, Invisalign Clear Aligners are designed to be removable by the patient, which makes them our most flexible method for correcting a malocclusion. With this flexibility, our patients should remove their aligner trays at mealtimes. Once you finish eating, thoroughly brush your teeth immediately after and then put your clear aligners back on.

If you follow our wearing guidelines, then you may be able to forgo your Invisalign for the duration of a special/important occasion, such as a wedding, job interview, or prom.

Subtle Houston Braces Treatment

One of the many reasons our patients question whether they should get dental braces or not is that they are rather self-conscious about having metal or ceramic braces on display when they talk, eat, smile, or laugh.

Invisalign Clear Aligners, on the other hand, are nearly transparent. This means that self-conscious teenagers and adults who would rather not draw attention to their teeth while they undergo treatment won’t have to worry about their appearance.

Cons Of Invisalign Clear Aligner Treatment

The greatest downside of Invisalign is that we prefer to recommend it to those with mild malocclusions for maximum effectiveness. If we do recommend Invisalign to you, these are the cons to keep in mind, though they may not be cons to you at all!

Easily Lost Or Misplaced

Invisalign Clear Aligners may be easy to lose since they are removable and transparent. If you find you may be forgetful sometimes, you may struggle to keep track of your aligners. However, we provide you with a case to store your aligners in so you can keep better track of them.

Meticulous Hygiene

Hygiene when wearing Houston braces is critical, but you need to pay extra attention when you wear Invisalign. If you wear any type of dental braces, it’s quite normal to get bits of food stuck in between your teeth, but when it comes to Invisalign, these food particles are notorious for impeding your aligners and making it obvious you have food stuck in your teeth. When food impedes your aligners, they won’t be able to do their job. Please be sure to thoroughly brush your teeth after each meal and floss every night.

Get A Houston Braces Consultation At Centra Dental

If you think Invisalign might be right for you, then please book an appointment with our South Houston dentist so we can evaluate your bite and determine the best treatment plan for you.

Approximately 4 million Americans wear braces at any given time due to malocclusions. A malocclusion is what we refer to as a “bad bite” or an “unideal bite”. Although we offer ceramic dental braces and even Invisalign in addition to metal Houston braces, we like to recommend metal dental braces for a variety of cases, simply because they are the strongest and are effective on virtually all malocclusions. In this article, our South Houston dentist will explain how metal dental braces work to correct malocclusions. 

What Are Metal Braces Made Of

In order to understand how metal dental braces work, we first have to explain how they are designed. At their most basic level, metal Houston braces are made up of 3 components.

  • Metal brackets, which are glued to the front of the teeth utilizing dental cement.
  • Archwire, which is laid across the brackets.
  • O-rings, which help attach the archwire to the brackets and keep everything in place.

How Metal Houston Braces Straighten Your Teeth

Whether you’re an adult in need of dental braces or are doing some research because your child may need braces soon, metal braces are a great method to correct a bad bite that any of our South Houston family dentist patients may have, regardless of their age. Today, metal braces are thinner and lighter in weight, which creates a far more pleasant experience.

The way metal dental braces correct the alignment of your teeth lies in how all three components work together. With the o-rings connecting both the metal brackets and the archwire, our South Houston braces dentist will tighten the archwire in different ways that will place specific amounts of pressure on your teeth and jaw at any given time. This guides your teeth to the proper alignment, thanks to the help of our 3D modeling software. Every so often, you will come back to our Houston dentist office so we can re-tighten the archwire, continuously guiding your teeth until we have helped you achieve a straight smile.

Ready For Metal Houston Braces? Visit Our South Houston Dentist Office

Now that you know more about metal dental braces, if you think they’re suitable for you please book an appointment so we can begin with our braces consultation.

Invisalign Clear Aligners are an increasingly popular method for correcting any misalignment in your teenager’s teeth. At our South Houston family dentist office, we offer Invisalign in addition to ceramic dental braces and metal Houston braces to our pediatric dental patients. In this blog, we will explain why Invisalign may be a great option for your teenager.

South Houston Invisalign Is A Subtle And More Comfortable Option For Teenagers

Unlike metal or ceramic Houston braces, Invisalign doesn’t require brackets, wires, or rubber brands. In fact, Clear Aligners are much like clear plastic retainers that are made by first completing a 3D scan of your teen’s mouth. Once we complete the scans and study them, we will design custom plastic Invisalign trays that will be made in our dental lab. These plastic trays will put gentle pressure on your teenager’s teeth so that they gradually shift until they are straight.

Because there are no wires involved and, as their name implies, Invisalign Clear Aligners are nearly transparent when placed on the teeth. This is ideal for your child if they tend to feel self-conscious in their smile and would prefer not to draw attention to their teeth

South Houston Invisalign Is Flexible 

If your teenager is very responsible and well-disciplined, they will greatly benefit from the greater flexibility that Invisalign offers. Invisalign is removable, unlike our other Houston braces treatments, so our patients should remove them at mealtimes. Additionally, if worn as directed by our South Houston family dentist, which is for 20-22 hours a day without being misplaced or lost, then your teenager may be able to skip the Invisalign for a special occasion, such as prom.

Are There Any Downsides To Invisalign Clear Aligners?

Invisalign seems like the perfect solution to fix a bad bite, but there are some limitations. For example, if your teenager has a severe malocclusion, Invisalign may not be as effective or as efficient at straightening the teeth compared to metal dental braces. Further, their flexibility will require your teenager to be very mindful of perfectly following our instructions in order to get the most out of Invisalign.

Visit Our South Houston Braces Dentist to See if Invisalign is the Best Treatment for Your Teen

If you think Invisalign might be a good option for your teen, then please book an appointment with our South Houston family dentist. We will determine what treatment method works best for your child's smile.

When any of our South Houston family dentist patients have a malocclusion, which is an improper bite that leads to other health concerns, we will recommend either Invisalign Clear Aligners, metal dental braces, or ceramic dental braces. In this blog post, we will discuss the difference between ceramic dental braces and metal Houston braces, which will give you a good idea of what you can expect with either treatment.

Ceramic Houston Braces

Ceramic dental braces are less common than metal dental braces, but they remain highly effective. When it comes to ceramic braces, they are made up of the following components, which make them blend into the teeth to create a subtler Houston braces treatment:

  • Tooth-colored brackets, or, in some cases, clear brackets. Both of these options are placed on the face of your teeth.
  • The archwire, which is placed over the brackets and ranges in color from silver, white, or frosted.

When Are Ceramic Houston Braces Recommended To Our South Houston Dentist Patients?

Because the ceramic material itself is strong, dental braces work wonders on patients with mild to moderate malocclusions, though how long treatment lasts will also depend on the severity of each individual case.

Metal Houston Braces

Metal dental braces are the most common type of Houston braces treatment we offer. These braces are similar to ceramic braces and contain the following:

  • Metal brackets placed on the front of your teeth
  • Metal, dark gray archwire, which is also placed along the front of the brackets

When Does Our South Houston Family Dentist Recommend Metal Dental Braces?

Metal dental braces are the most common type of Houston braces treatment because they are versatile, meaning they work for virtually all cases–from extremely mild to highly complex. Depending on our patients’ different cases, treatment may also last longer because metal brackets are stronger than ceramic brackets and will, therefore, be a quicker way to straighten your teeth.

Affordable Ceramic And Metal Dental Braces At Our South Houston Family Dentist

Whether you are considering Houston braces for yourself or for your child, Centra Dental in South Houston is the best place to get affordable braces, starting as low as $99 a month. If you would like to determine which method is best for you, then please book an appointment with us so we can begin with your Houston braces evaluation!