You might wonder if you can get braces on just one set of teeth, like your upper teeth only or your lower teeth only. These are valid questions, particularly if you only see that you have crooked teeth or gapped teeth on one arch. You might ask can you get braces for top teeth only? Can you get braces for bottom teeth only? What is one arch orthodontic treatment?
Can single arch treatment cause bite problems? (Probably, but not always. We’ll explain.)
You might have also researched words like braces for bottom teeth, only bottom braces, braces on lower teeth, bottom teeth braces, or braces only on top teeth, especially if your dentist has recommended braces just for an issue affecting your bottom teeth only.
We’ll learn the answers in a moment, but first let’s look at some of what some orthodontic experts have to say about braces.
Treatment with dental braces aims to improve the position of certain teeth or the position of the upper and lower jaw, to make them fit together better (IQWiG, 2006).
Fixed braces stay in your mouth until the end of the treatment, so it’s particularly important to keep your teeth and mouth clean if you have fixed braces (IQWiG, 2006).
The active treatment phase (when the braces are worn) is followed by a phase where you use something known as a retainer. This is done to prevent the teeth from moving back to their original position (IQWiG, 2006).
Can You Get Braces for Top Teeth Only?
There are many reasons why you might want to get top teeth braces only. When a person wants to get braces for top teeth or bottom teeth only, it is referred to as single or one arch orthodontic treatment.
This is possible, but braces for upper teeth is only suitable for some patients. So in short, yes it is possible to get braces for your top teeth only. However, braces top teeth only may not be the most ideal treatment plan for you.
Can You Get Braces for Bottom Teeth Only?
As stated, above, when braces are only placed on the top or bottom teeth only, it is referred to as one arch or single arch orthodontic treatment. One reason that patient may need only single arch treatment like braces on top teeth only or braces just for bottom teeth could be that they already have great teeth on one arch and only a simple crowding or spacing problem present on the other arch.
If a patient only requires simple treatment on the bottom teeth, this would be a good example for getting bottom braces only. Sometimes this can be achieved using Invisalign for people who just need a little refinement years after they have gotten their first set of braces off.
What Is One Arch Orthodontic Treatment?
As mentioned above, one arch orthodontic treatment like braces only on bottom teeth is where the orthodontist fits braces on one arch only. This might be the top arch or the bottom arch.
This procedure does not fix most of the orthodontic problems and some might say is just for cosmetic purposes only like braces on bottom teeth. In fact, if you have braces on one arch and not the other arch, it is possible to make one problem worse while trying to fix another. Therefore, as much as possible, unless directly specified by your orthodontist, it is best that both arches are worked on simultaneously.
Can Single Arch Treatment Cause Bite Problems?
Single arch treatment like braces for lower teeth does not fix most orthodontic problems, and can in fact cause more problems. One of the main problems with single arch orthodontic treatment is the bite.
A person’s bite involves the two arches and the jaws. When braces are only applied to one of the arches, a misaligned bite can occur. In fact, a misaligned bite or a full bite, is one of the main reasons an orthodontist recommends braces for both upper and lower sets of teeth.
So, in short, single arch treatment like braces on the top teeth only can cause bites problems.
For example, if braces are being used to correct a crowding problem, the straightened teeth will move forward; if braces are used to fix a spacing issue, the teeth will move backwards. Therefore, if a patient with a misaligned bite undergoes single arch treatment, such as braces on top teeth, the bite will become worse.
Discuss Your Options With An Orthodontist
It is important to discuss your options with your orthodontist near me. Your orthodontist will examine your mouth thoroughly and recommend the options that they think will be most suited for you. For most patients, single or one arch treatment is not feasible for many reasons. One reason can include a lack of available space between the front of the bottom teeth and the insides of the top teeth. The braces will rub against the top teeth in this case if a single arch treatment is used and the orthodontic treatment required in this case is for both arches to be fixed.
You might have other reasons why your orthodontist may recommend or not recommend certain types of treatment for you, and so you can achieve the best results, it is necessary to pay attention to your orthodontist recommendation.
Alternatives To Single-Arch Orthodontic Treatment
So, are there alternatives to single arch orthodontic treatment like braces on bottom teeth you might ask? The answer is that it totally depends on your circumstances. Before deciding on any particular treatment, discuss your options with the orthodontist. It is crucial that your orthodontist and you are aware of and consider all the necessary factors before deciding on any particular treatment. Your orthodontist will explain the benefits of different options collaboratively. You can decide which treatment method you prefer.
If you don’t yet have an orthodontist, feel free to visit Ivanovortho.com to book a no obligation consultation with an orthodontic specialist who can further discuss alternative options with you including braces for top teeth.
It is necessary that you find an orthodontist who understands your orthodontic and dental goals and concerns, and who has the state of the art equipment and the necessary education to help you achieve your goals and alleviate your concerns.
InformedHealth.org [Internet]. Cologne, Germany: Institute for Quality and Efficiency in Health Care (IQWiG); 2006-. Misaligned teeth and jaws: Treatment with fixed braces. 2020 Jan 16. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK553378/