Lingual Braces Vs. Translucent Braces

Posted in Articles, News, Orthodontic Treatment Options

Lingual Braces Vs. Translucent Braces

Lingual braces go behind the teeth, keeping them hidden from sight, and “translucent” braces are made of a tooth-coloured ceramic material that blends in with the colour of your teeth. We hope this post will help you decide which option would be best for you!


Each patient who sits in our orthodontist’s chair is different, both in terms of orthodontic issues and personality. That’s why we like to offer a wide variety of treatment options, and make the comparative pros and cons of each very clear.

Today, we’re looking at the differences between lingual braces and translucent ceramic braces.

Translucent Braces

As you may already know, translucent braces are not actually see-through; they just appear to be, because the ceramic material their brackets are made of blends in so well with the colour of teeth.

This seeming translucency makes these braces a more understated choice compared to traditional braces, whose brackets are made of metal.

Translucent braces can be somewhat expensive compared to traditional braces, so often patients choose to have them applied only to the teeth that are most visible when they smile and talk, usually the top front ones.

The ceramic material these brackets are made of is not as strong as metal, and so treatment with this style of braces can take a bit longer than average. This is because the orthodontist can not apply quite as much pressure to them during adjustments, and so movement occurs in slower increments.

Finally, although translucent braces look more understated than regular metal braces, the ceramic brackets are actually larger in size, adding more bulk over all. This is not apparent visually, but it may be a factor to consider in terms of comfort.

Lingual Braces

Lingual braces are a lot like traditional braces in respect to the materials used to construct them. The major difference with these is that they are placed on the backs of your teeth; that is, the surface facing into your mouth, toward your tongue.

This makes lingual braces an almost completely hidden orthodontic treatment option, since they won’t be visible unless you open your mouth up wide. The brackets on lingual braces are made of metal, and so they’re just as strong as those on traditional braces, meaning treatment time is not slowed down.

On the downside, many patients find that lingual braces make talking quite difficult at first. And, the fact that they’re placed right where your tongue hits the backs of your teeth means that they can cause some irritation and discomfort to the tongue.

In addition, although the duration of treatment is not necessarily longer, the duration of adjustment appointments can be. Lingual braces can also still be somewhat more expensive than traditional braces.

Finally, lingual braces can be a bit tricky to clean due to their position in the mouth. The awkward angles make require some acrobatics on your part!

Both translucent and lingual braces have their pros and cons, but in general, both these orthodontic treatments make for great choices for people looking for more inconspicuous options.

If you are interested in learning more about lingual or translucent braces, please contact us at Guildford Orthodontic Centre today to book a no-obligation consultation to discuss your needs.

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