5 Common Types of Braces Favored by Grand Rapids Orthodontists

Most people know the traditional metal braces that consist of brackets, bands, and wires used by orthodontists to straighten, align, and correctly position teeth. Steady pressure is exerted with the wire and switched out every few appointments to get the desired changes.

However, in the past 10 years there has been advancements in orthodontic technology and now orthodontists have more than traditional metal braces to choose from when recommending treatment.

What Common Types of Braces are Used in Grand Rapids, Michigan:

1. Metal braces

Just like they sound, metal braces are made of metal. These are the traditional form of braces. Metal brackets are glued to the surface of the teeth and can be seen. They are usually the least expensive of the types of braces. Kids like these because they have fun changing the color of the elastic rubber bands around the brace. The length of time with metal braces can take between 1-2 years, depending on patient goals and severity of correction.

Pros: Can be less expensive; robust; efficient at straightening teeth; doesn’t stain

2. Damon System or Self-Ligating Braces

Similar to traditional braces, these braces can be metal or ceramic (clear) and use the gradual pressure of the orthodontic wires to straighten or align the teeth. The difference between traditional braces and Damon or self-ligating braces is that instead of rubber elastic rings to hold the wire on, the Damon System uses tiny sliding doors. This means the braces don’t have colors.

Pro: Can have shorter and fewer appointments

Con: No colors for the patient to choose from

3. Lingual Braces

Made of metal, lingual braces are glued to the inside of the teeth, making them invisible unless you open your mouth.

Pro: Aesthetically better than traditional if you are looking to conceal treatment

Cons: impaired speech, harder to clean, and cannot be used if extensive treatment is needed.

4. SureSmile

Talk about technologically advanced, SureSmile is known to be one of the fastest results. An Oral Scanner and/or Cone Beam Computed Tomography (CBCT) is used to get the exact position and angle of every tooth. An archwire is used and activated by body heat.

Pro: quicker treatment; precise alignment

Con: Expensive

5. Invisalign

The way Invisalign works is removable aligning trays are worn for one to two weeks at a time for 22+ hours per day. At the end of that one to two-week period new aligner trays are used in series. The trays can be removed but should not be for long periods of time. Every 6 – 12 weeks, the orthodontist evaluates the progression of trays and make determinations on treatment

Pros: Less noticeable while in treatment, can remove while eating and brushing
Cons: Requires a lot of commitment on the patient’s behalf

At What Age Does Orthodontic Treatment Start?

Of the 4 million people in the United States that are wearing braces, 75 percent of them are younger than 18. Since abnormal bites usually become noticeable between the ages of 6 and 8 years old, orthodontic treatment often begins between ages 8 and 14. The American Association of Orthodontists recommends parents bring their children in before 8 years old for an evaluation.

What Should my Child Expect during Orthodontic Treatment?

Mild to moderate soreness of the teeth while they move is common during all types of orthodontic treatment. This soreness is similar to a muscle ache after exercise and over-the-counter medications for minor aches and pains can be used effectively to treat. Normally the first 48 hours with braces are the toughest and after that time period the body adapts.

Can Braces Be Worn During Sporting Activities?

Yes, braces can be worn during sporting activities, however, a mouth guard should be worn. Orthodontic and braces specific mouth guards are available in all sizes, shapes, and colors at your local sporting goods store or online. The braces act as a splint to hold the teeth together if you were to get hit in the mouth while wearing braces; however, a mouth guard is needed to protect your lip from the braces. Otherwise you may end up with a very fat lip.

What is the Average Cost of Braces in Grand Rapids, Michigan?

It’s not uncommon to need braces. Everyone wants a perfect smile, right? There are also times when it is medically and dentally necessary. Cost for comprehensive orthodontics in Grand Rapids, Michigan varies by age and complexity of treatment.


Averages $5400, up to $6100
Averages $5400, up to $6400



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