Robert W. Hessberger, DDS

Six Month SmilesĀ® vs. Braces: Which Option Is Right for You?

By Robert W. Hessberger, DDS on October 26, 2018

Up close photo of braces on teethIf you are exploring teeth straightening options, there are several to consider. The type of orthodontic treatment recommended for you will depend on your unique dental needs and personal oral health goals.

Six Month Smiles® is a popular alternative to traditional metal braces. As the name suggests, this option can straighten your teeth in as little as six months.

Here, Dr. Robert Hessberger explores Six Month Smiles vs. braces at our Chicago, IL practice, and discusses the pros and cons of each so you can be well-informed about your treatment options.

About Six Month Smiles

Six Month Smiles adopts traditional methods and combines them with modern techniques. In contrast to metal braces, the brackets are clear. The wires are tooth-colored so they blend in with the natural color of your smile.

This orthodontic option also utilizes lower force, which actually moves the teeth quicker with less discomfort. Six Month Smiles focuses on the “social six” - that is, the teeth that are visible when you smile.

Advantages of Six Month Smiles

There are several benefits of Six Month Smiles. For example, this treatment option is:

  • Discreet: Due to the tooth-colored wires and clear brackets, Six Month Smiles is far less noticeable than conventional metal braces.
  • Fast: Because Six Month Smiles focuses on straightening the front teeth, treatment can be completed much quicker compared to traditional orthodontic methods.
  • Affordable: Since treatment with Six Month Smiles can be completed in just a few months, the overall fees are generally less than traditional braces.

Disadvantages of Six Month Smiles

There is really only one disadvantage to consider if you are thinking about Six Month Smiles. Because this system is designed to address the aesthetics of your smile, it will not improve your bite function. It is important to be aware of this limitation before pursuing treatment.

About Traditional Metal Braces

Conventional metal braces have been used for decades. These appliances include metal wires, bands, and brackets, which work together to move teeth gradually over time.

Advantages of Traditional Metal Braces

Compared to Six Month Smiles, conventional braces can address a wider range of orthodontic issues, including overcrowding, overlapping, gapped teeth, and more. Even the most complex bite problems can typically be corrected with traditional braces.

Disadvantages of Traditional Metal Braces

There are a few disadvantages of metal braces. For example, they are quite noticeable, especially compared to the clear brackets used for Six Month Smiles.

Additionally, treatment typically takes twice as long, or more. On average, it takes about 18 to 24 months to complete treatment using conventional braces. For this reason, metal braces are generally more expensive as well.

Contact Our Practice to Learn More

There are several factors to consider when deciding on the most appropriate orthodontic option. During a consultation at our practice, Dr. Hessberger will listen to your cosmetic concerns and determine if you are a candidate for this treatment. To learn more, or to schedule an appointment, contact us online or call our office at (773) 792-5562.

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