How Do Braces Straighten Teeth?

Starting your braces journey is an extremely exciting time in your life! No matter your age, you can count on Decatur Orthodontics to help you through each step of the smile realignment process. You’ve likely seen friends or family wearing braces before, but how do they straighten teeth? Read on to learn more about this amazing appliance, the function of each component, and the types we provide at our practice.


The Basics of Braces 

Braces are an incredible appliance orthodontists have provided patients with for years. They have the power to resolve any oral issue you may be dealing with, including bite complications, crowding, malocclusion, and spacing. 

Prioritizing the health of your teeth is essential, as neglecting issues can lead to other health concerns, such as poor digestion, neck pain, and migraines. You can enjoy the beautiful aesthetics of a perfect smile by beginning orthodontic treatment with braces.

Understanding Tooth Movement

Braces place constant slight pressure on your teeth, controlled by the archwire, in different directions. You will undergo three phases during treatment: level and alignment, bite adjustments, and fine-tuning. At each appointment, Dr. Francis and the Decatur Orthodontics team will adapt your treatment plan and tighten your appliance when necessary as we see how your teeth react. Over time, they will shift into their new position and establish new roots due to the pressure.


Each Brace Component and Its Function

Each carefully crafted component of braces works together to straighten teeth and help you achieve the smile you deserve. Let’s review the pieces braces are composed of and what they do to help Decatur Orthodontics provide high-quality care with results that last a lifetime. 


Brackets are the small square metal appendages placed on your teeth to help transfer pressure to the jaw. They provide an anchor point for many other appliance parts.


Your brackets are traditionally attached to the front of your teeth with solid orthodontic glue. This durable substance ensures they stay in place throughout treatment. Although they may feel permanently stuck, we use special tools that easily remove this bonding once your teeth have finished shifting.


Now thinner than ever, the archwire is a piece of metal stretching across your teeth, weaving through each bracket. You will have one on your upper set and another on the lower set. This component does much of the work in placing pressure on your teeth and jaw to shift them into place. 


If a section of your teeth requires an extra push in the right direction, rubber bands are a great tool to help guide them along. They come in various sizes, strengths, and colors to fit each case and are designed to attach to the brackets’ hooks to place ample pressure on your jaw.

Imaging Technology Equipment

The iTero element scanner, a wand that captures a 3D model of your teeth, and digital x-rays, which provide images showing what’s below the surface, are used to help our team determine the placement of your braces. They each show us a detailed look at your teeth, gums, bone structure, and more. Decatur Orthodontics proudly provides the latest technology for our patients so they can rely on the fact they are getting the best treatment.


How Do Braces Straighten Teeth?

Our Available Treatment Options

LightForce Clear Braces

LightForce clear braces are the future of teeth straightening. This appliance has tooth-colored brackets and wires that blend with your smile so you can continue smiling confidently throughout treatment. They use 3D printing to create custom brackets and wires that comfortably fit your teeth and give incredibly efficient treatment.

Brava Hidden Braces

Another invisible treatment option is Brava hidden braces, which work differently than traditional braces and their placement. Instead of placing brackets on the front of your teeth, this is a lingual appliance, meaning Dr. Francis rests it on the inner surface of your teeth. Brava hidden braces do not use elastics; instead, they use a single wire with small brackets that move each tooth independently of the other to provide a unified result.

How Much Do They Cost?

The cost of braces treatment for each patient varies based on which appliance they choose, their current oral health, the work that needs to be done, and follow-up appointments, among other things. We can only provide an exact amount for payment after seeing your teeth during a free consultation. In the meantime, our team can offer average costs.


LightForce Clear Braces: $4,000 to $8,000 without insurance

Brava Hidden Braces: $8,000 to $10,000 without insurance


Decatur Orthodontics provides free consultations for each new patient visiting our office so you can learn more about your teeth, financial expectations, and how to protect your oral health. When you come in, Dr. Francis can walk you through how each cost relates to your investment, how your insurance plays into payment, and any other questions you may have about treatment. 


 How Do Braces Straighten Teeth?

Unlock the Power of Braces

The Decatur Orthodontics team is dedicated to helping patients achieve the smile they deserve. We are always happy to answer questions so you feel confident about beginning care with us. Our practice provides expert orthodontic services to those in Decatur and the surrounding communities. Schedule your free consultation with Dr. Francis and learn more about your oral health today. We can’t wait to meet you!