Orthodontics is a dentistry specialty dealing with something called malocclusion, or misaligned bite. When the teeth are not correctly positioned in the upper and lower jaws, it leads to an improper bite, such as underbite or overbite.

Orthodontists help patients by providing them with fixed or removable appliances to correct their bite. The goal of the treatment is realigning the teeth and creating a more beautiful smile over time.

There are several different types of orthodontic treatments available, including:

  • Traditional metal braces
  • Clear aligners
  • Permanent or removable retainers

Traditional Metal Braces

When adults think of braces, they are commonly picturing the traditional metal braces that everyone is familiar with. Although conventional braces are still available and popular, some patients prefer other types of treatments, such as clear braces, because they view metal braces as being too bulky and noticeable.

In reality, metal braces have undergone something of a transformation in recent years. This has allowed them to be more sleek and less noticeable than in the past.

Clear Aligners

 Clear aligners are a type of orthodontic treatment that has come online in recent years. This popular type of treatment involves the use of clear plastic aligners that comfortably shift the teeth into their proper positions. The most popular type of clear aligner system is known as Invisalign.Some of the advantages of clear aligners are:
  • · Removable for cleaning the teeth or eating
  • No metal wires or brackets that could pop loose and irritate the mouth
  • No food restrictions
  • Virtually invisible to observers
Treatment with clear aligners involves receiving a new set of aligners at certain intervals, typically every two weeks. So there is no tightening of wires and brackets involved with this system. You are just provided with a new set of aligners from time to time until your treatment is complete.


Once your braces are removed, there is still a ways to go. The next phase of your treatment is known as retention, which ensures that your teeth remain in their new positions.

It could take a year or more for your teeth to become stabilized after your treatment with braces. So once your braces are removed, your dentist or orthodontist will fit you for either removable or permanent retainers that are custom-made to fit the unique shape of your teeth and smile.

Permanent retainers are bonded to the side of the teeth that face the tongue, so they cannot be seen. Since they are permanent, they do require some special care. You will need to learn how to properly brush on and around them.

With metal braces, flossing can be difficult due to the wire found over the front of the teeth. With a permanent retainer, the wire will be behind the teeth, so you need to carefully maneuver your dental floss so that your teeth are properly cleaned.

Your Consultation

If you or your child needs orthodontic treatment, we invite you to reach out to us to ask any questions that you may have. Contact us today to schedule a consultation at your earliest convenience.

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If you have questions about Galleria Dental Arts, get in touch with our friendly team today at (703) 368-9777.