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The Smile Space
The Smile Space

How Long Do Teeth Braces Stay On?

Thinking about getting braces or already in the middle of your orthodontic journey? One of the big questions on your mind is probably, “How long do I need to wear these?” It’s a fair question. Braces are a commitment, and the timeline can vary quite a bit. It’s not just about getting those teeth in line; it’s about setting you up for a healthier, more confident smile. 


The duration depends on a few things like how complex your dental situation is, the type of braces you’ve got, and how well you stick to your orthodontist’s advice.

Factors Influencing Braces Duration

The time you’ll spend with braces isn’t a one-size-fits-all deal. It hinges on several factors. First up, the complexity of your dental issues – we’re talking about how crooked your teeth are or if you’ve got a bite issue. Then there’s the type of dental braces you’re using. 


Traditional metal braces might take a bit longer than the newer, more advanced types. And let’s not forget about how well you follow your orthodontist’s instructions. Keeping up with cleaning, attending regular check-ups, and wearing any additional gear like rubber bands can all affect how long you’ll need braces.

Complexity of Dental Issues

If your teeth are just slightly crooked, you might get off easy with a shorter braces stint. But if you’ve got a more complex situation, like a severe overbite or underbite, you’re looking at a longer road. It’s all about how much movement your teeth need to get them in line.

Type of Braces

The kind of braces you choose plays a big part. Traditional metal braces are the old faithful, but they might take a bit longer. Options like ceramic braces or clear aligners can sometimes offer a quicker route, depending on your case. Your orthodontist can help you pick the best type for your situation.

Patient Compliance

This one’s on you. Following your orthodontist’s advice to the letter can impact your braces timeline. This means keeping them clean, showing up for your appointments, and wearing any additional gear like elastics as instructed. Slacking off here can add extra time to your braces journey.

Average Duration of Braces Treatment

On average, most people wear braces for about one to three years. But remember, that’s just an average. Your experience could be shorter or longer depending on those factors we talked about. After the braces come off, you’re not quite done yet. Most folks need to wear a retainer to keep their teeth from shifting back. This could be just at night or for a longer period, depending on what your orthodontist recommends. It’s all about making sure those teeth stay put after all the hard work you’ve put in.

Short-Term vs. Long-Term Treatment

Some people luck out with short-term treatment, especially if they’re dealing with minor corrections. We’re talking about a year or less in braces. On the flip side, more complex cases can take up to three years or sometimes a bit more. It’s all about what your teeth need to get them in tip-top shape.

Importance of Regular Check-ups

Regular check-ups with your orthodontist are crucial. They keep an eye on your progress and make any necessary adjustments to your braces. Skipping these appointments can slow down your treatment, so make sure to keep them on your calendar.

Post-Braces Retention Phase

Once your braces come off, the retention phase kicks in. This is when you wear a retainer to keep your teeth from shifting back to their old positions. It’s a crucial step in maintaining that new smile, so don’t underestimate the importance of sticking to your retainer schedule.

Average Duration for Different Types of Braces

When it comes to braces, one size doesn’t fit all – and neither does one timeline. Different types of braces can mean different treatment durations. Traditional metal braces, the most common type, usually take about two years on average. Ceramic braces, which blend in more with your teeth, also tend to have a similar timeline. Then there are lingual braces, which are hidden behind your teeth and can take a bit longer due to their complexity. And let’s not forget about clear aligners like Invisalign – they often boast shorter treatment times, sometimes as little as 6 to 18 months, depending on the case.

Traditional Metal Braces

Metal braces are the old-school, tried-and-true method. They’re reliable but typically require the longest commitment, averaging around two years. They’re great for tackling a wide range of dental issues, from simple to complex, so the extra time can be well worth it for the results you get.

Ceramic and Lingual Braces

Ceramic braces offer a less noticeable option and usually follow the same timeline as metal braces. Lingual braces, while stealthier since they’re placed behind the teeth, can take a bit longer to do their job, mainly due to their placement making them trickier to adjust and clean.

Clear Aligners like Invisalign

Clear aligners have changed the game in orthodontics. They’re less noticeable and often quicker, with average treatment times ranging from 6 to 18 months. However, they require discipline – you need to wear them for the recommended 22 hours a day and change them out regularly for the best results.

Life with Braces - Tips and Tricks

Living with braces isn’t always a walk in the park, but there are ways to make it easier. First up, oral hygiene is key. Keeping your braces and teeth clean can prevent a lot of issues and keep your treatment on track. Then there’s the food factor – avoiding hard, sticky, or chewy foods can save you a lot of trouble. And let’s not forget about discomfort. It’s normal, especially after adjustments, but there are plenty of tricks to ease the pain, like using dental wax or over-the-counter pain relievers. Remember, it’s all temporary and totally worth it in the end.

Keeping Braces Clean

Good oral hygiene is super important when you’ve got braces. Brushing and flossing around all those wires and brackets can be a hassle, but it’s crucial for avoiding problems like cavities or gum disease. Investing in tools like interdental brushes or water flossers can be a real game-changer.

Managing Food Restrictions

Braces mean you might have to say goodbye to some foods for a while. Crunchy apples, chewy caramel, popcorn – these can be a no-go. It’s all about protecting your braces from damage. But don’t worry, it’s not forever, and there are plenty of brace-friendly foods to enjoy in the meantime

Dealing with Discomfort

It’s normal to feel some discomfort with braces, especially after tightening appointments. Over-the-counter pain relievers can help, as can orthodontic wax for any poking wires. Cold foods and drinks can also be soothing. Just remember, each day with a little discomfort is a step closer to that perfect smile.

So, there you have it – a rundown on the braces journey. From how long you’ll wear them to living with them day-to-day, it’s a process, but one that leads to a fantastic smile. Remember, everyone’s experience is different, and that’s okay. The key is to stick with it, follow your orthodontist’s advice, and look forward to the end result. 


If you’re thinking about getting braces or are already on your way, just know that it’s a journey worth taking. And hey, if you’ve got any questions or need some expert advice, we’re here to help. Here’s to a future of happy, healthy smiles!

Get Outstanding Dental Care with Us Today

At The Smile Space, we believe that comprehensive dental care should be accessible to everyone. Our experienced team is dedicated to providing the highest standard of care, using the latest technology and techniques. If you're looking for a dentist in Sutherland, book an appointment at The Smile Space today!

The Smile Space

Your Journey to a Perfect Smile

We understand that the decision to get braces is significant. At The Smile Space, our focus is on making this journey as seamless and rewarding as possible:

Comfortable Braces Experience

We fully grasp the significance of the decision to get braces in Sutherland Shire. At The Smile Space, our commitment extends beyond mere results; we prioritize your comfort throughout the entire treatment journey. 

Our aim is to make this experience as smooth and comfortable as possible, from the very beginning to the final reveal of your beautifully transformed smile.

Sutherland Shire Community

In the heart of the Sutherland Shire, we take pride in being an active and integral part of this vibrant community. By offering top-notch orthodontic services, we not only serve our neighbours but also contribute to the community’s overall well-being. 

Your choice of The Smile Space for braces in Sutherland Shire is a choice for community support and excellence.

Dr. Joseph Coorey


Dr. Joseph Coorey

Dr. Joseph Coorey, or just Joey as many of his patients call him, graduated from the University of Sydney in 2010. Joey is passionate about dentistry, particularly Dentofacial Orthopaedics and Orthodontics, with a goal for appropriate airway development, healthy jaw joints, and proper function in adults and children.

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