You Can Get Bottom Teeth Braces – Is It Right for You?
You might think you can only get braces on both your upper and lower teeth. But you can actually get braces on just your bottom teeth. They are best suited for people who have straight upper teeth and have no jaw alignment issues. Braces on just the bottom teeth are helpful for correcting bite issues and also for straightening teeth or aiding with overcrowding which creates space. There are some things to consider about getting just braces on the bottom teeth only, so let’s look at the advantages and disadvantages.
Can I get braces on the bottom teeth only?
The answer is yes – you can get braces on just your bottom teeth, a process called a single arch treatment. It’s definitely not as common as getting full braces on both the top and the bottom, and it’s not even as common as having braces on the top teeth. If you have straight teeth on the top and the rest of your teeth are generally in good shape, you can be eligible to get braces on the bottom teeth.
One reason why you might want just braces on the bottom teeth is if you have crooked bottom teeth, they can lead to cleaning problems or even gum disease.
Check with your orthodontist to be sure you only need bottom teeth braces. You might think your upper teeth are aligned or straight, but their actual alignment might actually need adjusting. If you have a malocclusion or misaligned bite it can put stress on your jaw or make your teeth wear improperly. You can even feel the tension in your jaw joint called the TMJ. It’s a very fine line between being well aligned and not, and your orthodontist can make that determination.
Your orthodontist will do a full evaluation and take X-rays so that he or she can see what you need. They might even do this at an initial free consultation. They can also let you know how much braces cost for bottom teeth at that time.
You have two rows of teeth, called dental arches. That is the whole line of your teeth and bone in both your upper and lower jaw. It is important that your orthodontist consider both arches in your evaluation so that you get the best bite and overall oral health for life.
A misaligned bite is a problem because it means that your teeth won’t meet correctly when you chew, and it can cause the teeth to wear down faster than they should, or end up weak so they are prone to breaking or chipping. Also, if you can’t chew properly, it puts more of a strain on the rest of your digestive system to break down the food.
Sometimes people know they need braces on the top and the bottom teeth but they can only afford to fix one set of teeth at that time, or they are only feeling affected by having one set that is crooked. There are times that people get bottom teeth braces for purely aesthetic reasons or the state of their teeth makes them feel self-conscious, and that’s ok. Others will get braces on the top teeth only because they have crowded top teeth.
Whether you get braces on just the top or bottom teeth, modern braces are often a lot smaller than they were in the past, and that means they aren’t as uncomfortable in the mouth. You can even get clear braces on bottom teeth that will make them almost invisible while you are wearing them. There are also other alternatives like clear aligners that you can get for your bottom teeth that can help get them straightened.
You might be able to get braces alternatives for your bottom teeth. If you are trying to correct some crowded or crooked teeth, you might be able to use a retainer or clear aligner. This is not the kind of retainer like you would wear after you get the braces off, but rather one that attaches to the back of the teeth called a bonded lingual retainer. They will help straighten teeth that need just a little help. You can’t take them out, so you will need to have your orthodontist replace them if you need it done, whereas the clear aligners can be removed for cleaning your teeth – and the appliance itself.
Clear aligners will gently move the teeth back into position and then allow for more room for the front teeth so they can be straightened up. Your orthodontist will take impressions and then create the aligners for your bottom teeth which you will switch out every couple of weeks.
Another option is called the Herbst appliance which helps adjust the lower jaw and move it forward so it meets the upper jaw properly. It may attach to the back molars on both the top and bottom to help with the way the jaw lines up.
Pros of bottom only braces
If you have a small jaw, you can find that your lower teeth will become crooked as you get older and the teeth naturally move. That’s right – your teeth will continue to move throughout your life. As you talk, your jaw muscles move and that actually exerts just a bit of pressure on your teeth.
The advantage of getting bottom only braces is that you can straighten crooked or crowded teeth or close gaps in your teeth on the bottom jaw and do a lot of good. Situations when this will work include helping an overbite. Straightening your bottom teeth out if they are crooked will generally bring them forward to help meet the upper teeth.
At the end of your treatment, you may need to get some bonding done to correct problems that happened during the time that the teeth were wearing incorrectly. It helps fill in the parts of teeth that are missing and it also helps close up some gaps you might have.
Another reason you might get braces on the bottom teeth only is for kids who are doing early orthodontic treatment to help give their adult teeth enough room to grow in. This is likely not the permanent solution, however, for most kids as later on they will get the full set of braces in order to get the proper bite alignment for them to have for life. Still, bottom teeth braces can do a lot towards keeping extensive expensive and painful work from needing to be done later.
Having braces for only bottom teeth will generally mean you don’t have to wear them as long as you would if you had a full set. There is not a matching alignment that needs to occur so once the teeth on the bottom are set correctly, they are done.
Cons of bottom only braces
Your bite is comprised of how your upper teeth and lower teeth meet. You might have a bite alignment problem and not be aware of it, so you think you only need bottom teeth braces. The fact might be you have a problem and you actually need braces on both the top and bottom teeth to correct it properly. Your orthodontist can review your bite and help you determine what the best course of treatment will be for you.
For example, if you have an underbite where your lower teeth extend farther out than your upper teeth, you are probably not a good candidate for getting bottom teeth braces. It can actually end up making your underbite worse and causing you even more problems because as it corrects a crowding problem it will need to push the bottom teeth forward.
It is also possible that if you just have braces on bottom teeth only, you will end up changing how you chew and that can stress your teeth and even your jaw which can cause pain and also mean that your teeth will wear down improperly.
Also, some people don’t have enough space between their upper and lower teeth to accommodate the braces and the brackets end up grinding against the upper teeth.
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Amazing experience! I’ve had my braces for 6 month now and I’m impressed of how much my teeth have changed. No pain at all. Dr. Ivanov is such a sweet person and very professional, he knows what he’s doing and always cares for patients personal concerns. Highly recommended!
Dr. Ivanov was amazing. When I first got my braces I was scared it was going to last 4yrs for my teeth to look better but it only lasted 2yrs and the results are beyond amazing. I’m really happy with everything and would absolutely recommend him to anyone. Thank you so much.
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Dr. Ivanov was amazing. He was very understanding and took the time to explain, every step of the process for my daughters braces. I am proud to say with great care her braces were finally removed and the end result is the beautiful smile she now has. Thank you
Ivan and his staff made my experience a smooth and convenient process. I am absolutely delighted and satisfied with the progress and how far my teeth has come. Ivan and his staff works effortlessly to ensure that my teeth are perfected beyond my expectations. If I had any other choice I would still choose Ivanov Orthodontic experts.
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How much are braces for bottom teeth?
You might wonder how much do braces cost for bottom teeth only. As you might expect, braces on just the bottom teeth will be slightly less expensive. Consider that the main part of the cost of braces is the orthodontist visits, however, when you are evaluating the expense. Also, the consultation and initial impressions will be to look at the entirety of your mouth, so that cost won’t change either for how much braces on bottom teeth only cost. But, since you are wearing the braces for a shorter amount of time, you will save some money on visits to the orthodontist.
When it comes to clear aligners, again the impressions are taken of both the upper and lower teeth, so there is no savings there because the lab costs are the same. You will save a bit of money on your overall treatment since you are getting trays for just the bottom teeth.
Bottom teeth after braces
After you get your braces off, make sure that you take good care of your teeth and gums. You may want to visit your dentist so he or she can do a good cleaning of your teeth. You will have had a bit of a tooth blockade for a couple of years, so now is the time to get your teeth clean and then show off your new beautiful smile.
You will also want to be sure you take good care of your retainer and wear it diligently so your teeth can set properly in their new position. Don’t try to bite into things like apples or corn with your retainer on because it can actually damage the wire and you will need to go get it replaced.
I had braces and my bottom teeth shifted
It does happen sometimes that teeth will move over time after you wore braces. One of the reasons people might get just bottom teeth braces is if they wore braces as a child or teen and their teeth have drifted over time and are now out of alignment or you have bottom teeth crowding after braces. If the upper teeth are still in a good position, getting braces on the bottom is a good idea to bring them back into place.
Have you ever wondered why your teeth drift? They are actually not just set into sockets in your jaw, but they are actually attached by ligaments, and those ligaments have long memories. They want to go back to their static position which is the one they had before everything moved. You will want to wear your retainer to keep that stretch until the ligaments get used to being in that place.
And, your jaw muscles and tongue act on your teeth, putting pressure on them over time and moving the teeth.
Sometimes that means using fixed retainers, but most of the time they are the removable kind. So to make sure that bottom teeth braces before and after are just as effective, wear your retainer!
If you do forget to wear your retainer like you should, or your teeth have moved in your middle aged years anyway, you can get clear aligners or bottom teeth braces to fix the placement again.
So can you have braces on bottom teeth only? Yes, but ultimately you will want to be sure you check with your orthodontist to see if getting braces on just your bottom teeth is the right solution for your bite and teeth. Your orthodontist will have your best oral health in mind and will come up with the best treatment plan for you. There are many times that orthodontists will recommend having braces on both the top and bottom teeth so that your bite is correctly lined up, but that’s not to say that that is the only solution. Book your consultation today to see whether you are a good candidate for braces or Invisalign for your bottom teeth only and ask how much do bottom teeth braces cost.