Traditional, Clear, and Lingual Braces – How is Each Used?


The three main types of affordable braces that we offer at Valderrama Orthodontics are traditional braces, clear braces, and lingual braces. Each of these have their own pros and cons. Depending on the type of orthodontic procedure that you need, we might recommend one of these to you. Here’s a closer look at how these three types of braces differ.

Traditional Braces

Traditional metal braces have been around for more than a century, and they remain the most common type of orthodontic treatment used for straightening a patient’s teeth. They are most commonly used by children and teens, although they are appropriate for some adults as well. Metal brackets are affixed to the teeth and then a wire runs through the brackets. Your orthodontist tightens the wire every four to eight weeks at appointments, to shift the teeth over time.

Traditional braces are one of the most affordable options when it comes to straightening a patient’s teeth. Braces are also more convenient for children because they do not have to be removed at certain times a day like aligner systems. There’s no risk of your child accidentally misplacing their braces! The elastic bands that tie the wire to the braces also come in a variety of fun colors, so we let kids and teens personalize their traditional braces if they want.

Clear Braces

Clear braces are similar in function to traditional metal wire braces. The main difference between traditional braces and clear braces is the materials that they are made from. Clear braces are crafted from ceramic materials that match the natural color of the patient’s teeth. Although they are somewhat visible, clear braces tend to be less noticeable and less obtrusive when compared to traditional metal braces.

Clear braces are sometimes referred to as invisible braces or bride braces. For women who are planning to get married but want treatment with braces to start before the wedding, bride braces are a great option. The fact that they are nearly invisible means that the bride can flash her full smile for the wedding photos. Because clear braces are nearly invisible, the most common patients to request them tend to be teens and adults who don’t want everyone to know they are undergoing orthodontic treatment.

Lingual Braces

Lingual braces are one of the least common of all orthodontic treatments. They are an extremely specialized service that we provide here at Valderrama Orthodontics. Lingual braces are similar to traditional braces in that they are made with metal brackets and metal wire. However, lingual braces are affixed to the back of the teeth, so they are out of sight.

Even though they are less common, lingual braces are a great option for teens and adult patients who don’t want other people to know they are having their teeth straightened. Unlike clear braces, lingual braces are truly invisible to others, since they are attached to the backs of the teeth.

In some cases, lingual braces have a major advantage over traditional braces. Lingual braces are able to achieve certain orthodontic outcomes that are not possible with traditional or clear braces. As one example, lingual braces can be used to open up a deep overbite. They use a more complex wire pattern, so they are able to achieve significant shifts in the teeth that are not possible with traditional braces.

One downside to lingual braces is that they can impact a patient’s speech for the first two weeks or so. The patient will be able to feel the braces with their tongue, which can be uncomfortable at first. The speech issues and tongue discomfort will fade away in a couple of weeks as the patient gets used to having them on the backs of their teeth.

Call Us for a Braces Appointment in Melbourne

Contact one of our affordable orthodontist practices in Suntree, Viera, or Rockledge to schedule an appointment. Call 321-425-5050 or email us at and make an appointment for a complimentary consultation with Dr. Valderrama and her team.  We take most insurance and are actually in-network with them, we are open on Fridays and Saturdays and treat you as our own family. Come see us today.