The 6 Month Smiles brace is a short-term orthodontic treatment similar in scope to popular aligner treatments. An incredibly discreet type of fixed braces and has been designed as an alternative to standard and more visible metal and porcelain braces.
The Six Month Smiles treatment is an incredibly discreet type of fixed braces and has been designed as an alternative to standard and more visible metal and ceramic braces. The 6 Month Smiles brace is a short-term orthodontic treatment similar in scope to popular aligner treatments, but employs clear brackets and tooth-coloured wires which your dentist can easily adjust to achieve the desired amount of pressure and therefore move your teeth into the desired position.
Whilst it is not a totally invisible type of treatment, the fact that 6 Month Smiles uses tooth-coloured brackets and wire make it a fairly unnoticeable solution for day-to-day life, although some people would still be able to notice both the brackets and wires from up-close. This is one of the major points of difference between fixed braces like 6 Month Smile and truly invisible braces such as Invisalign clear braces.
The 6 Month Smiles appliance has been designed to straighten patients’ teeth in a reasonable amount of time, usually about 6 months, although treatment length really depends on the severity of each case.
What is important to note about this type of treatment is that unlike Invisalign clear braces, 6 Month Smiles primarily focuses on the patient’s front teeth, so whilst the duration of your treatment might only be 6 months or less, the reason for this shorter treatment time is the focus on the front teeth rather than the entire arch of the patient’s mouth. As such, 6 Month Smile really focuses on minor cases and issues such as mild crowding of the front teeth, crooked front teeth or to fix a gap between your front teeth.
As a result, this type of treatment is not necessarily right for everyone but can be a great alternative to metal or ceramic braces for image conscious patients looking to slightly change the arrangement of their front teeth to give them a more beautiful smile.
Prior to your treatment starting, we would recommend doing a full dental check-up to ensure there are no cavities or major issues with your teeth which could become a problem during the course of your 6 Month Smiles’ treatment. We would also encourage you to get your teeth professionally cleaned by a hygienist prior to your treatment starting. This will ensure a good oral hygiene prior to fitting the braces.
Your Six Month Smiles treatment begins with a visit to your dentist who should explain you the overall treatment process and timeframes, show you what the 6 Month Smiles appliance looks like and assess whether or not the appliance is suitable for you based on your goals. If this method is not right for you, your dentist will explain other treatment options available. They will also explain prior to taking any dental impressions how much movement can be expected using this type of appliance and give you an idea of the desired end-result.
If suitable, your dentist will then take photographs and X-rays of your teeth to have before photos and check your teeth are in good health prior to the treatment. Your dentist will then proceed to taking impressions of your teeth in order to customise the 6 Month Smile brace.
By planning your treatment like this, you’ll know exactly how long you’ll need to wear your braces for, when to visit your dentist and what to expect throughout your treatment with 6 Month Smile.
The process involved in having the Six months Smiles brace fitted is relatively simply and faster the conventional method used for traditional metal braces. Initially, your dentist will use a chemical prepping agent (etching gel) on your teeth to make the enamel surface easier to adhere to. Secondly, the bonding adhesive varnish is applied to your teeth and set with a special curing light.
Next, a bonding agent/glue is placed on the brackets which are held in the bonding trays and placed into your mouth onto the teeth and set into place by the light cure. The trays that acted as a guide for the dentist and carried the tooth coloured/ white brackets into position are then removed, leaving the brackets in place. Wires can now be attached, and any necessary adjustments are made. The wires work with the brackets to gradually and effectively move the teeth to the desired positions throughout your treatment.
Malocclusion of the teeth is the technical term used by dentists to describe a misalignment problem that can lead to serious oral health complications. Patients often refer to those misalignment problems as crooked teeth, wonky teeth, crowded teeth, overbite, open bite, cross bite or large spaces between the teeth.
These deviations from ideal ‘occlusion’ can range from mild to severe cases. With any of the above malocclusions, the teeth are not able to perform vital functions, which can have serious consequences on both your oral and digestive health, not to mention they can also impact your confidence at work, in social settings or in your relationship.
These issues could previously only be addressed using fixed metal or ceramic braces, surgery or simply accepted as is. This is no longer the case with technology and new material developments such as 6 Month Smiles revolutionising the World of cosmetic dentistry.
Unfortunately, Six Month Smiles is not suitable in every case of malocclusion. The brace works by making small adjustments to your front teeth only, meaning it is not effective to address more severe cases where the alignment and positioning of the teeth in the entire arch of a patient’s mouth have to be addressed. In those circumstances, patients might need to revert back to metal braces, ceramic braces or more invisible treatment options such as Invisalign clear braces.
The exact treatment length will depend on how far your teeth need to move to be in the desired position and achieve the correct bite, but as its name suggest, the Six Month Smiles treatment typically takes between 6 and 9 months.
It is worth re-iterating that only your front teeth will move with this type of treatment and that Six Month Smiles is unable to move teeth more quickly than metal braces or ceramic braces as they use a similar type of process which requires both brackets and a wire.
The Six Month Smiles treatment is an incredibly discreet type of fixed braces and employs clear brackets and tooth-coloured wires, meaning the brackets and wires aren’t as noticeable as those used with traditional metal or ceramic braces.
Whilst it is not a totally invisible type of treatment, the 6 Month Smiles offers image conscious patients with an alternative to more traditional braces and as a result is often used by adults who might want to get their front teeth straightened without their friends or work colleagues noticing.
However, as discussed above and whilst 6 Month Smiles uses tooth-coloured brackets and wires, other people will still be able to see that you are wearing braces from up close. If this is something that is likely to bother you and if you are looking for a more invisible solution, we would recommend you look at Invisalign clear braces as an alternative.
As part of your treatment plan, your dentist will schedule appointments at specific and frequent intervals to review the progress of your treatment an adjust your 6 Month Smiles braces to adjust the pressure where needed to move the teeth into the desired position.
The good news about 6 Month Smiles is that you won’t need to have adjustments as often as you would need to with traditional metal or ceramic bracers which should save you time and effort throughout your treatment.
As a rule of thumb, your dentist will review the progress of your treatment and make adjustments to the braces every 5-6 weeks. However, the frequency of your dental appointments will depend on how far your teeth need to move and your dentist’s recommendations. Keeping regular appointments allows your dentist to check your progress and make any adjustments necessary.
Make sure to use your appointments to discuss any issues or raise any concerns you may have with your braces as your dentist will be in a position to adjust the position of the brackets or pressure of the wire.
Due to the nature of the Six Month Smiles treatment, you will need to have clear or tooth-coloured brackets and wires fitted onto your teeth. Your dentist will use customised trays allowing them to take impressions of your teeth and assess where the brackets need to be placed in order to apply he correct amount of force at each stage of the process in order to get your teeth to move into the desired position over the course of your treatment.
Brackets are fixed to your teeth using a special type of material called a bonding adhesive which acts as a glue and maintains the brackets the desired position. Once the bracket has been placed in the desired position, your dentist will use a curing light – a piece of dental equipment which will help the bonding adhesive to harden and stick to your tooth.
At the end of your treatment, your brackets can easily be removed without causing any damage to your teeth. Your dentist will use orthodontic adhesive removal pliers for removing the bulk of the bonding adhesive and then use finishing burs/polishing burs to clean up any residue left on your teeth, without at any pint damaging your tooth enamel.
Six Month Smiles is extremely effective in delivering fast results when only the front teeth are concerned. However, due to the limitations of this type of treatment, this method is not going to be a suitable solution for all patients interested in straightening their teeth, with more complex cases requiring the use of metal braces, ceramic braces or invisible types of braces such as Invisalign.
Dentists recommend maintaining good oral hygiene while wearing your braces in order to avoid cavities and other dental related issues which could be difficult to carry out during the teeth straightening process (e.g. crown placement).
As a result, it is recommend you brush your teeth after each meal to reduce the build-up of plaque.
It is worth noting that appliances which use brackets and wires make it more difficult to keep a good oral hygiene simply because the position of the attachments and wires make it incredibly complicated to reach certain places and brush your teeth properly. It is also more difficult to floss with this type of appliance and the use of floss picks is recommended over standard dental floss.
As brushing your teeth becomes more time-consuming with Six Month Smiles, good oral hygiene is more difficult to maintain and some patients decide to cut down the number of times they brush their teeth each day whilst wearing the braces. Whilst this might save you time, this is not a recommended approach as it puts you at a greater risk of developing gum disease or tooth decay.
Difficulty in maintaining good oral hygiene is one of the main reasons why people choose removable braces over Six Month Smiles or other fixed metal or ceramic braces.
From an appliance standpoint, wearing Six Month Smiles is more comfortable than traditional braces using fixed brackets and wires, especially since the brackets are not made of metal and are less likely to cause cuts to the inside of your mouth, to irritate the soft tissues or the gums.
However, as with all types of braces, tooth movement is obtained by applying pressure to each tooth individually in order to move them into the desired position. This gradual tooth movement is obtained by tightening the wire every couple of weeks which is done by your dentist during your periodic review appointments. The system might therefore feel quite uncomfortable for a few days after the braces have been adjusted, after which the sensitivity in your gum should slowly disappear.
Some people are under the impression that 6 Month Smiles achieve fast results in comparison to other types of braces. This is unfortunately not the case as teeth can only move at a certain speed and this movement is approximately the same regardless of the type of appliance used. The misconception comes from the fact the treatment length is only 6 months as it only works on your front teeth as opposed to the entire upper or lower arch.
However, seeing as the average treatment is approximately half of that of standard fixed metal braces, it makes 6 Month Smile a more comfortable solution overall.
The cost of Six Month Smiles braces will vary from region to region and from practice to practice. You will also need to discuss your case with your dentist to fully understand how long your treatment would take, as the complexity of the case is likely to impact the overall price.
However, Six Month Smiles costs on average between £2,000 and £3,500.
As with any teeth straightening treatment, you will need to wear a retainer when your brace is removed. Retainers will allow your teeth to stabilise in their new positions after the treatment. This is as important a part as the treatment itself as teeth continue to move throughout your life which could lead to a relapse after a few years.
There are multiple types of retainers that you can wear after your treatment, from fixed metal retainers that are permanently bonded onto the back surfaces of your teeth, to Essix retainers, a removable retainer which you can wear at night.
Be sure to discuss this with your dentist prior to starting your Six Month Smiles journey as this could have an impact on the final cost of your treatment.
6 Month Smiles is a great alternative to more traditional fixed metal or ceramic braces in that it is incredibly discreet due to the tooth-coloured nature of the appliance which makes it almost invisible and the short treatment timeframes (6-9 months depending on the complexity of your case).
However, it is only suitable for cases addressing the front teeth and is not adequate for patients with more severe types of malocclusions and looking to improve the oral health and structure of their whole mouth.
If you are looking for a Six Month Smiles dentist in your local area, look no further. Smileo has over 2,000 private dentists in the UK, all performing a range of different facial aesthetic treatments including 6 Month Smiles, Inman aligner, Invisalign clear braces, Damon Braces, as well as traditional metal braces, ceramic braces and lingual braces. To find a practitioner near you, simply enter your preferred location in the search bar below and refine your search results to find the dentist that best suits your needs.
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