Braces in dentistry are known as orthodontic treatments. These treatments were developed over time to treat people who had issues with their bite and jaw function.
This page is a guide as to what modern braces systems are available in 2020 and how they work.
Braces are used to resolve issues of underbites and overbites causing jaw misalignment through the difference in the growth of the jaws. Combined with this, braces have now become a key part of cosmetic dentistry to resolve cosmetic issues such as overcrowding and crooked teeth, spacing between the teeth due to missing teeth or size differences between the teeth and jaws.
The good news is that with modern techniques there is always a solution to these cosmetic concerns and functional bite issues.
Today in 2020 there are more options for types of braces than ever before. Each person’s suitability for ‘which brace is right for you’ depends on your individual situation as not all braces are suitable to resolve every bite issue or cosmetic concern that you may have. Each brace has its own pros and cons; which may impact on your decision as to which is best for you relating to the speed of treatment, appearance of the brace and costs involved with each type of treatment.
Metal ‘Train Track’ Braces
This type of brace has fallen out of favour over the years due to the non-aesthetic look. This is the original classic brace type, with metal brackets and wires glued to the front tooth surface of the teeth and moved slowly by the wire. Special elastics hold the wire onto the bracket with coloured versions now also available to brighten the appearance and make it more of a fashion statement especially for teenagers. We don’t use this type of brace at Azure Dental but have included it here in our review for completeness.
Similar to metal braces with one key difference- the brackets are clear and therefore significantly more cosmetic. They can treat all the different types of cosmetic and bite issues for both short term braces (STO) type cases to improve your smile, as well as longer term bite treatment cases. They move the teeth much faster than other cosmetic brace options like Invisalign. The only real downside is that the clear elastics that hold the wire onto the brackets can stain depending on the diet each person eats and drinks- especially the currys! They are freshly changed at each review visit so this isn’t a big issue. As the teeth move so fast, within a few months you will be thrilled with the new appearance.
This newer type of brace is different to the above methods by using a series of clear aligners (thin removable trays). These clear braces are almost invisible and are easily removable for eating and drinking. Each aligner is computer designed, putting pressure on the teeth in a very specific way to create the movement desired. Then every 1-2 weeks you change for the next aligner in the series. The downside to Invisalign aligner braces is they tend to take up to twice as long to move the teeth, in the same type of cases compared with Ice clear braces. Cost wise they are in the region of 30-50% more due to the processing costs and require excellent wear commitment. Even though they are removable they need to be worn 20-22 hours per day- just being removed for eating and teeth cleaning.
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Lingual ‘Inside’ Braces
This type of brace is placed on the back of the teeth (known as the lingual surface) against the tongue or palate. Again they are metal brackets and wires like the outside version but a different shape and style. The main advantage is they are not visible day to day given they are glued to the inner surfaces. But this does have knock on effects in the earlier stages as it can hurt the tongue and teeth while you get used to it. It is about 50% more expensive than outside braces due to the complexity of treatment and more frequent reviews for adjustments. It is also much less suitable for the more difficult complex cases.
What is Involved?
Before you get braces it is important to have good oral health with no decay or gum issues. If these health issues are left unresolved then over the course of the brace treatment they will only progress and worsen. This therefore may mean having some preparatory health work such as a hygiene appointment or fillings if needed.
Putting the braces on typically takes between 45-90minutes depending on the type of brace chosen for the treatment and whether you are treating one or both arches of teeth. Each brace is made to fit/ positioned tooth by tooth individually so no two people are ever the same.
The process for an Ice clear brace follows these steps-
The teeth are cleaned and dried before the glue is applied to the teeth.
Each tooth has a bracket placed around the centre of the tooth depending on what the plan is for moving the tooth up/down relative to the neighbouring teeth.
The white archwires are then attached to the clear brackets using the clear elastic bands.
The process for Lingual braces is similar but requires more time and expertise. Quite often the positioning of the brackets is planned on models first and then the brackets are transferred to the mouth with special trays to keep this correct positioning.
Invisalign is similar again. But instead of brackets being applied to the teeth with glue, the special attachments designed and located to help the clear aligners move your teeth are placed using a special transfer tray. They are then perfectly positioned for the Invisalign tray to put the correct pressure on them.
With the Ice clear braces we arrange reviews around every 4 weeks as this is the right sort of time to make the necessary adjustments to the wires and bands to keep the teeth moving smoothly. Invisalign review appointments tend to be around every 6-8 weeks to check on the tooth movement and make any space adjustments.
The brackets and wires are removed and then the glue is polished off with a special tool to refinish the front surface so it is nicely polished again. The Invisalign attachments are removed in the same way. Once everything is cleaned up, we can then review the incsial edges of the front teeth for any contouring that may be needed to improve the aesthetic appearance from wear and chips. This is when we can fully assess the tooth shapes for any required composite bonding to finish off the teeth perfectly.
Before the brace is removed we will fit a fixed wire retainer onto the backs of the front teeth using the same glue used for the brackets. Hidden on the inside surfaces it can’t be seen but it ensures that the front teeth are suported and stable immediately once the brace is removed. This is vital to the success and stability of the smile. We will also take a final impression to have a night time removable ‘Essix’ retainer made to back up the fixed wire and keep the overall broader smile achieved.
This is called belt and braces retention to keep things perfectly in line. Long term (lifetime) retention is crucial if you want to keep your teeth straight. Teeth will always want to move with the amount of pressure present in your mouth. Retainers usually need maintenance and repair from time to time with replacement ‘Essix’ retainers usually in a 12-18 month basis, often depending on each person’s natural grinding habit.
As you will always need retainers we include both fixed and removable retainers as part of all our brace packages and don’t add extra fees on for these at the end.
Braces have varying costs depending on the type of brace being used and the extent of treatment you individually require. Generally Ice Clear Braces are between £2000-£3000 for an average 6-9 month case (the main difference being whether just one or both arches are being treated). With longer more complex cases quoted based on the likely increased treatment need. Invisalign cases similarly differ based on the type of case you are- i7/Lite/Full as to the extent of treatment and number of aligners being manufactured, along with the surgery time involved. The fees are usually between £2500-£4500, again varying with whether you are treating one or both arches. As a guide most people tend to be in the middle due to the type of case/ number of clear aligner stages required, which is determined by the pre-treatment computer simulated design planning.
Get in touch to arrange a consultation or to simply find out more information about Invisalign braces liverpool, click on any one of the links to chat to us-
Dear Dr. Gary, Eva and all of Azure Dental’s amazing team! 😊✨
I wanted to say a big thank you from the bottom of my heart for the excellent dental experience I had all throughout my visits; starting from our new to consultation till the end of my dental plan with both the pre and post treatment. Everyone in your team was so approachable, accommodating, knowledgeable and kindly supportive with my numerous questions and concerns. I couldn’t imagine an even better dental practice and how I wished I got in contact sooner with my sister’s recommendation. Plus your marvellous pain free dentistry has truly transformed and returned back the confidence in my smile. I am delighted with the amazing results and whenever if I have any dental issues I can return and count on you. Thank you so much for the extra time spent to reassure my worries and I truly appreciate your caring professionalism and expertise 😊✨ I would highly recommend you to anybody I know! ☆☆☆☆☆
So grateful to Dan and the whole team. Really can’t thank them enough for how hard they worked to make me feel at ease and reassured. Feel like I’m in safe hands and receiving the best quality care and advice at Azure. Thank you all
Azure has the very latest equipment. As a new patient a thorough examination on the status of your teeth accompanied by very good advice on their condition and any health issues you may have, including cosmetic treatments all viewed on screen. i was made to feel very comfortable throughout. Many thanks😊
Highly recommended! Today was my second visit and I am a very nervous patient. I had a filling and a full clean and polish ready for 10 vaneers to be fitted! I’m normally on the ceiling due to sensitive teeth and didn’t flinch ! The needle for my filling I didn’t even feel Dan went though everything step by step ! Can’t wait for my new smile ! Would recommend everyone to use azure dentist and for nervous patients it was a breeze! Thank you Dan and the team
Highly highly recommend Azure! I had my teeth straightened as a child but they moved back. My teeth looked ok when I was a child but they look a million times better now! Dan did so much more with my teeth including shaping them and using different techniques that made a massive difference! I actually can’t believe how different my smile now looks!! I can’t believe they’re my teeth! I can’t thank Dan and the team enough for everything they have done! Another thing I really liked about Azure was how friendly all of the staff where and how they remember each individual patient and build a really great rapport. Thank you all for everything you have done ☺️
Dan at Azure and all the wonderful dental nurses and receptionists are extremely professional and friendly. I am over the moon with my new smile after having braces for the last 7 months. I couldnt recommend them enough! Thank you, thank you!!
Huge THANK YOU to Dan and the team for the hard work, had my braces taken off today, words can't describe how happy I am, and so glad that I went to Azure Dental that was reccomended to me by a friend, the treatment only took 7 months and the results are amazing! I'm loving my new smile 😁🌟
I would highly recommend azure dental, great service, professional, affordable and friendly. Dan and his team put me at ease while going through the process of having braces and my teeth bonded. Could not be happier with the final result Love my new smile 😁
After having dental traumas in the past this dentist practice has made me feel so reassured, calm and looked after. After having treatment I even received a follow up call 24 hrs later, on a Sunday, now that is a service 👌. I myself a ward sister of 17years in the NHS would recommend this practice. The staff are professional, efficient and so understanding ( my fear of the dentist), it is a clean, and very friendly environment
I can not recommend Dan Hines enough, I’ve just finished my orthodontic treatment and I am absolutely thrilled with my results. He’s a brilliant dentist and his nurse Becky is fantastic too both so friendly, patient and genuinely lovely people. I did my research before choosing which dentist I would like to take on my case and I chose Dan as he is one of the most precise, thorough dentists I know. Both him and Becky have been so professional and welcoming throughout my whole treatment, explaining every stage and answering any of my concerns. If your looking for a brilliant dentist that is so down to earth and puts you at ease Dan is your man! Thank you so much for all your help!
I live on a narrow boat and continually cruise the UK’s inland waterways....I am also terrified of dentists. When I say terrified, I say it without exaggeration. So terrified am I, that I had spent the twelve months prior to seeing Dan and his team, eating paracetamol like they were Smarties. My husband and I where moored in Maghull, when he declared enough was enough and dragged me (kicking and screaming) by train, to Azure Dental. My initial consultation confirmed what I had suspected, I needed four teeth removed. I can not begin to explain my abject fear at that prospect. Dan was lovely, kind and truly sensitive. He reassured me that I would feel no pain and he was 100% right, doing everything to ensure that result. Consequently, I returned to this practice and followed through with my treatment, each time my fear abating. My boat is now moored in Market Harborough (East Midlands). I travelled for two hours by train to Manchester and then drove an hour to have Dan and his hygienist complete my treatment. Big shout out to the lovely young blonde woman who held my hand initially and her dark haired colleague (sorry I don’t know either of your names) who helped me remain calm and relaxed for the rest of my treatment. I truly appreciated both of you. X
Dan, I will see you again. Thank you most sincerely.
I can't thank Ellie enough for transforming my smile. I've always been conscious about my smile and now I'm beaming. Great service from start to finish! Such a lovely and professional service! Would highly recommend to anyone!!!
i was feeling very anxious and nervous about treatment after having extreme pain last time i had treatment elsewhere , i had a fantastic experience at azure everyone was so lovely and i have had very little pain post treatment !
1st visit for me to this practice. I am a very nervous patient who has had bad experiences in the past with dentist. Dan and his team immediately gave me confidence. Would certainly recommend to anyone especially nervous people like myself.
I am so pleased that I joined Azure Dental's easy payment plan 2 years ago. It is a joy to be able to go to the dentist and not have to worry about paying. Dan is "the smiling dentist" par excellance! He has a genuine concern for me & my teeth, & I know that I am in safe hands. Likewise, with his hygienist staff - always very thorough & professional. I couldn't recommend anyone more highly.
As a nervous patient I have always struggled to keep up with my dental care but on my first visit to Azure a woman who was just leaving said to me that I would be fine. Dan is brilliant she said and she was right. My teeth were in quite a state as I had not visited a dentist in years. He reassured me and explained everything and the whole experience was so much better than I was expecting. That was a couple of years ago now and I no longer dread going to the dentist. Dan and all his team do a great job.
Best dentist ever!! Dan and his team are lovely. I was so ashamed of my teeth when I came for the consultation. Every visit I was actually excited for my appt. yesterday my brace has come off and I can't stop smiling showing my teeth, can't wait to smile on my wedding day showing my straight teeth! Definitely recommend anyone to go here!! Will miss coming for an appt. ☺️
Been going to Azure Dental since they opened and they have always been superb. I recommended by Son to go too. He needed extensive treatment and he was delighted with the results. Their newly appointed dental hygienist is a great asset to the group. Long may it continue .........
I have had clear braces fitted in my 40s and although I was a bit concerned I might be too old Dan was so nice and very easy to talk to. I am half way through now and know I will be delighted with the results. I would definitely recommend the practice �
Excellent customer service and genuinely nice people. After a lot of research and a number of consultations I chose Dan for my Six Month Smile and he didn't disappoint, quick and efficient. I have since needed a couple of minor repairs to my retainer, on the first occasion I was concerned it was going to be very expensive but it wasn't it was a reasonable amount which reaffirmed my opinion. Highly recommended!
I was recommended to go for an assessment to Azure Dental. I have had some terrible experiences with dentists over a lifetime of difficulties with my teeth and I was a little sceptical. However from the moment I walked in I was treated brilliantly. All the staff were helpful and friendly. The consultation with Dan was the most thorough I have ever experienced. He is fastidious, obviously extremely knowledgable and competent. In addition he was polite, caring and courteous. He was able to make a difficult diagnosis with care and accuracy. I have no hesitation in recommending them. I shall be staying with them now I have found them.
Marvellous and painless treatment and friendly staff. No complaints. I've recommended Azure to my daughter and now she's joined and is confident to have alignment done by them. You can have a laugh with the team there and there's not many dentists you can say that about!! X
Hi Just wanted to write a review about Azure Dental Formby. I have only currently joined the practice and have visited a couple of times as I am getting continuous treatment at the moment. I can not recommend this practice highly enough. From the staff to the treatment i am having, 1st class service. I am finally after having years of problems with my teeth getting my smile back to how it was. Can not thank them all enough. ����
I have a phobia about dentists,and thought I would give this place a go. Pain free caught my eye,and it was pain free!! The staff make you feel very welcome and have great sense of humour,which is needed for me!! Dan the man is fantastic,he does what he advertises pain free!! Excellent practice,highly recommend it to everyone.
Saw Dan for the first time today. I was losing my mind with worry, he put me at ease explaining all and I felt re assured and very comfortable. Even with all my treatments to come which have been discussed, I felt ready to take it all on and finally feel good about my teeth. Thanks Dan! 🙂
I have always suffered from gum infections leading to receding gums and ultimately loss of teeth. I have a very unreasonable fear of dentist. I attended Azure for a consultation which was very thorough . I was assured that my fear would be treated with respect. My next appointment went absolutely superb. I have another appointment in the near future and I am not feeling the fear! Would absolutely recommend Azure to anyone.
Currently undergoing comestic dentistry work. Dan is a fantastic person and always very optimistic. The staff are pleasant and always put you at ease. I would recommend anyone after the treatments they offer to go.
Iam currently undergoing treatment with Dan and his team and can't thank them enough. I was so apprehensive and nervous regarding dentists but no more after visiting Azure. They really do put you at ease and endeavour to make your treatment pain free. If you have a dentist phobia Dan and his team are well worth a visit.
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