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Author Topic: Ligatures for metal braces: elastic or metal? Which colour?  (Read 885 times)

Offline partnerwantsbraces

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Ligatures for metal braces: elastic or metal? Which colour?
« on: 02. November 2023, 13:21:01 PM »
If you get traditional metal braces, what are the ligatures usually made of? I've read they can be metal or elastic. Is this purely cosmetic? I.e. the rubber ones are for only if you want colours. My partner is way too old for colours and we just want all metal.

Will we get a choice of metal or rubber or is it down to the treatment plan? If rubber, what is the best to go for to blend in with the metal? From what little I know you can get white, clear, silver/grey and black, all neutral. Would we go for silver? I had read that the clear ones can stain.

Thanks.

Offline Thelog

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Re: Ligatures for metal braces: elastic or metal? Which colour?
« Reply #1 on: 02. November 2023, 15:34:41 PM »
You can't choose metal or elastomeric ligatures, they're dependent on the treatment

Metal ligatures are used to 'lock' brackets to the wire, the prevent movement - typically towards the end of treatment. Wire ligatures are also used when there's a risk of an elastomeric ligatures pulling off the bracket, for example if a tooth is behind the arch and being pulled forward

Silver is generally a safe choice of ligature, though curry will stain it an unpleasant muddy green for a week or two. Clear turn yellow from pretty much anything bar the blandest foods, ditto white. My wife (late 30s)got many colours towards the end of treatment - her favourite was teal/turquoise. Black was good too, it makes the teeth look super white and can't stain

Offline partnerwantsbraces

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Re: Ligatures for metal braces: elastic or metal? Which colour?
« Reply #2 on: 02. November 2023, 15:51:52 PM »
Thanks for that. So you're saying most people with metal braces will have elastomeric ligatures most, if not all, of the time?

We do eat a lot of foods that would stain so I guess black is best then if you want something neutral.

When I do an image search of metal braces I get what appears to me to be either braces with really saturated ligatures, like your wife had, or, the braces just look all metal. E.g. look at the images here: https://dereferer.me/?https://www.manchesterorthodontics.co.uk/products/metal-braces

In my linked example, what are they using, clear elastomeric?

If you stain the clear ones (or any of them) is it possible to clean the stains off? If I understand correctly they get changed quite frequently so shouldn't be too much of an issue regardless.

Offline Thelog

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Re: Ligatures for metal braces: elastic or metal? Which colour?
« Reply #3 on: 02. November 2023, 16:07:29 PM »
They're clear ligatures on that image. Re cleaning the stains, it depends on what's stained it I guess - sometimes I she'd have a fluorescent yellow/green powerchain or ligs after a curry or something, that would usually fade over a week

Though from close up photos I look over the years, clear elastomerics always end up a dirty yellow, whatever you eat. Black is guaranteed no stain, white teeth. My missus wasn't into the idea of colours, but ended up enjoying switching her smile up

Offline Person

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Re: Ligatures for metal braces: elastic or metal? Which colour?
« Reply #4 on: 03. November 2023, 04:55:42 AM »
The first picture on that webpage has clear ligatures, the second has light pink powerchains, and the third has no ligatures (they are Damon braces, which are a kind of self-ligating bracket).

If your wife really doesn't want colors and doesn't want to worry about staining, find an ortho who uses self-ligating brackets. Though it's possible she'll have powerchains at some point even with self-ligating brackets, and powerchains will have to be some sort of color (even if it's silver or clear).

Silver is the color that will most look like no color. Blues and dark colors will make the teeth look whiter.

They do get changed out, but it'll be every 4 to 8 weeks. So it's not like you can have red and green just for the week of Christmas, for example. I have braces right now and my appointments are usually 8 weeks apart. That makes picking a color harder because if you go with something seasonal, you have to want to have it for two months, basically.

Offline partnerwantsbraces

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Re: Ligatures for metal braces: elastic or metal? Which colour?
« Reply #5 on: 03. November 2023, 10:50:41 AM »
Thanks for confirming. I think she'll go with clear and see how badly they stain and then go for black if they're bad.

I did look at self-ligating but so few dentists in our area do them.

Of all the people with metal braces I've seen that don't have bright ligatures, I can't recall seeing any that I thought looked badly stained. Hopefully it's quite subtle.