When a patient is referred for orthodontic treatment these days, many times he/she will learn or ask questions about braces before arriving at Orthodontics on Silver Lake (OSL).
The internet can provide brand names of braces (brackets) and it is sometimes confusing. Some marketers claim superiority for things like treatment results or saving time. There has been significant research done – nine randomized clinical trials, and two systematic reviews (1).The research found there is no enhanced efficiency in using self-ligating brackets.
So, there is no “Best”.
Good vs Better?
By definition, self-ligating brackets or braces hold the wire without an extra tie or color. The wire is positioned into the bracket and the door is closed to securely hold the wire. Non self-ligating brackets usually have colors applied to the bracket to hold the wire – there is no door. The colors can loosen and not hold the wire as securely, but this problem is not common.
Some of the key benefits of using self-ligating brackets seen @ OSL:
- The patient’s teeth will more likely move along the wire as prescribed.
- These brackets are also easier to adjust chairside, and therefore the patient’s time in the chair has been shown to be slightly less. This is great for our busy families and patients!
- There is less surface area to clean than with non-self-ligating brackets-easier homecare.
Benefits of Non-Self-Ligating brackets:
- Consistent improvements in design have made these brackets a reliable option as well for our patients.
Ultimately, the orthodontist’s experience with a variety of brackets can optimize the outcome, regardless of the type of bracket/braces. Braces are only a tool we use for achieving excellent results and addressing the patient’s concerns. See you next month!
1. Fleming, P.S. and O’Brien K., “Self-ligating do not increase treatment efficiency” Am. J. Orthod.,143:11-19,2013.