Damon braces are a fixed type of brace which is worn to correct a range of orthodontic conditions such as overcrowding or misaligned teeth. It uses a slide mechanism to help move teeth smoothly and easily into their new position.
This is a modern update on the traditional 'train track' type of brace but is less noticeable and more comfortable to wear.
What are Damon braces?
A Damon brace consists of small ceramic brackets and a wire which runs through the brackets. But the difference with this brace is the slide mechanism. This mechanism is 'self ligating' which means it contains a movable component, i.e. tiny stainless steel bracket that holds the arch wire in place.
This means that there is no need to use elastic ties to provide tension to move the teeth as was the case with older types of braces. This brace has a smooth, sliding mechanism which exert (*content missing here)
What do Damon braces treat?
This brace is used to correct a variety of orthodontic conditions which include:
- Gaps in the teeth
- Crooked teeth
This brace works for both minor and major orthodontic problems.
Is it similar to Lingual braces? Not quite. It has a similar appearance in that it consists of brackets and an arch wire but, the main difference between the two is that the Lingual brace is fitted to the rear of your front teeth. This makes them virtually unnoticeable to the naked eye whereas Damon braces are fixed to the front of your teeth.
Damon braces are noticeable but they have an aesthetic appearance and are comfortable to wear which is one of several advantages. The brackets are small tooth coloured units containing a stainless steel mechanism which along with the natural coloured wire, are discrete and easy on the eye.
Advantages of Damon braces
The smooth, slide mechanism is the main advantage of these braces which moves your teeth quickly and easily. This means no rubbing against your teeth and gums which often causes soreness.
Other advantages are:
- Attractive appearance
- Easier to clean than other braces
- Quicker treatment times
- Can treat severe orthodontic problems
Another factor is that you are less likely to undergo an extraction which is often the case with conventional orthodontic treatment.
The Damon brace is a better choice for complex orthodontic cases as compared to the invisible type of brace such as Invisalign.
But this comes at a price: this treatment is quicker and more effective than many other types of braces which are reflected in the cost. This brace is more expensive than conventional braces.
How does a Damon brace work?
The brace operates by means of a clever slide mechanism which guarantees a smooth process of tightening your teeth. This mechanism exerts a series of forces on your teeth which pulls them into the desired place. This powerful yet simple mechanism does this in a shorter period of time and with minimal discomfort.
The self ligating nature of this device means that you do not have to undergo regular adjustments which also speed up the process.
Fitting a Damon brace
An appointment will be arranged with an orthodontist. He/she will discuss the procedure (and brace) with you, explaining the benefits and the risks. This discussion also includes costs.
He or she will examine your teeth followed by the taking of an impression. An impression is where you are asked to bite into a mould (filled with dental putty) which provides an imprint of your teeth. This impression is used to fabricate your Damon brace.
Once the brace is ready you return for the fitting. The brace is attached to your teeth with dental glue: the brackets are glued first followed by the insertion of the arch wire through the slide mechanism. This process takes around an hour on average.
Your orthodontist will advise you about the importance of cleaning your teeth (and brace) on a regular basis, using a mouthwash and having check ups with your dentist.
Will I need an extraction?
Fewer extractions take place these days but extractions still form part of many orthodontic treatment plans. There are cases where an extraction is needed to free up space in the mouth before a brace is fitted or to improve the jaw line.
Many patients prefer the Damon brace is it can be fitted without needing an extraction but, there are situations where extractions are necessary to ensure the success of the treatment.
Your orthodontist will be able to advise you about this.