Patients who wear braces have plenty of options. Traditional braces remain the most popular, and one trend among those who choose them is the use of gold braces. This article delves into everything you need to know about gold braces to help you make an educated decision.
Almost everyone needs to wear braces. Although there are new options for realignment (e.g., Invisalign), traditional braces remain the most popular choice.
1 in 6 Invisalign users end up switching to braces as well, so it's important to consider all options.
Gold braces may seem like a luxury option, but they actually serve multiple benefits to brace-wearers.
In this article, we'll tell you all about gold braces, from their aesthetic benefits to the hidden advantages you may not know.
Teeth Braces: A Quick Overview
Braces are the most common kind of orthodontic treatment, with over four million people in the U.S. wearing braces at any given time. They are orthodontic appliances used to align teeth and jaws.
Teeth braces consist of two main parts:
Metal brackets: Metal or ceramic squares that the orthodontist attaches to each tooth using glue.
- Archwires: Metal or clear bands that fit into the brackets and help move teeth into the correct position.
The brackets act as a guide for the archwires, which place pressure on the teeth to move them into proper alignment.
When wearing braces, the process can take anywhere from a few months to over two years, depending on the complexity of the case and how well the patient adheres to the orthodontist’s instructions. During this time, braces will need to be adjusted, usually every six to eight weeks.
When a patient gets new braces, one of the first choices they will make is the brace color—the most popular colors being silver and clear. Some prefer to customize their braces with multicolor patterns and designs, while others choose to make their braces stand out by selecting a unique color like gold.
What Are Gold Braces?
Gold braces are the same as other brace types, but with gold-plated brackets. Considered a luxury option, they are usually more expensive than metal or clear braces. They are available either as traditional or lingual braces.
Typically, gold braces are made from gold-plated stainless steel, and the brackets are coated with an additional layer of yellow gold to give them a shiny finish. They can also be found in a range of colors, such as rose gold or white gold—sometimes, as high-quality as 24-karat gold.
Gold braces are popular among those who want to make a bold statement and stand out from the crowd. The gold color is eye-catching, giving wearers a unique look that can be customized with colored wires for an even more personal touch.
Gold Vs. Silver Braces
Gold and silver braces share the same basic function of aligning your teeth. However, there are a few significant differences between the two:
Gold braces: These braces offer a luxurious and eye-catching look with their gold-plated brackets. They can be further customized with colored wires for a more personalized appearance.
- Silver braces: Traditional silver braces have a more discreet and classic look, as they are made from stainless steel. They can also be customized with colored wires.
Gold braces: As a luxury option, gold braces are generally more expensive than silver braces due to the gold-plating process and the material's higher value.
- Silver braces: These braces are more affordable and are the most common option for orthodontic treatment.
Gold braces: Gold braces are made from gold-plated stainless steel and are sometimes available in various colors and gold purities, such as 24-karat gold.
- Silver braces: Traditional silver braces are made from stainless steel, which is strong and durable.
Gold braces: Gold braces are slightly softer than silver braces, but the difference in durability is negligible for most patients.
- Silver braces: Stainless steel braces are known for their strength and durability, making them a reliable choice for orthodontic treatment.
Gold braces: Gold braces are a good option for those with nickel allergies, as they do not contain nickel in their construction.
- Silver braces: Some people may experience a nickel allergy with traditional silver braces, as stainless steel often contains traces of nickel. Patients may opt for alternative materials, such as ceramic or gold braces in these cases.
Gold braces: Gold braces may require extra care to maintain their shine and prevent tarnishing. However, the gold plating is highly resistant to corrosion and staining.
- Silver braces: Silver braces are low-maintenance and easy to clean, making them a practical option for many patients.
Gold Braces Vs. Metal Braces
Metal braces are similar to silver braces, but they are made from a different metal alloy. The main difference between these two types of braces is that gold braces offer a luxurious and eye-catching look, while metal braces provide a more traditional and discreet appearance.
Gold braces: Gold braces provide a luxurious and attention-grabbing look, thanks to their gold-plated brackets. Customization options include colored wires and different shades of gold, such as rose gold or white gold.
- Metal braces: Traditional metal braces have a more utilitarian appearance, with their classic silver-colored stainless steel brackets. They can also be personalized with colored wires.
Gold braces: Being a high-end option, gold braces tend to be pricier than traditional metal braces due to the gold-plating process and the material's higher value.
- Metal braces: Metal braces are more cost-effective, making them a popular choice for orthodontic patients.
Gold braces: These braces consist of gold-plated stainless steel, with some variations in gold colors and purities, such as 24-karat gold.
- Metal braces: Traditional metal braces are made from stainless steel, a strong and reliable material.
Gold braces: While gold braces may be slightly softer than their metal counterparts, the difference in durability is minimal and should not impact treatment for most patients.
- Metal braces: Stainless steel braces are known for their strength and resilience, contributing to their widespread use in orthodontics.
Gold braces: Gold braces are an excellent choice for individuals with nickel allergies, as they do not contain nickel.
- Metal braces: Some patients may experience nickel allergies with traditional metal braces due to the presence of nickel in stainless steel. Alternative materials, such as ceramic or gold braces, may be more suitable in these cases.
Gold braces: Maintaining the shine and preventing tarnish on gold braces may require extra care. However, the gold plating is highly resistant to corrosion and staining.
- Metal braces: Metal braces are low-maintenance and simple to clean, making them a practical choice for many orthodontic patients. Brushing your teeth with braces is about the same as it would be in both cases.
Benefits Of Gold Braces
Believe it or not, gold braces aren't just a luxury item patients choose to look flashy or glamorous. They have many hidden benefits that make them a great choice for orthodontic treatment.
Gold braces have a natural resistance to bacteria, making them a more hygienic choice for orthodontic treatment. The gold-plating on the brackets reduces the chances of bacterial buildup and plaque formation, leading to better oral health during the treatment period.
A 2023 study proves gold braces reduce bacterial buildup on the teeth by 78% compared to traditional metal braces while remaining safe and effective.
Gold is a biocompatible material, meaning it is non-toxic and safe for use within the body. Gold braces are an excellent choice for patients concerned about potential toxicity from their orthodontic appliances.
The gold-plated brackets do not cause any adverse reactions, ensuring a comfortable treatment experience.
Anti-Inflammatory And Anti-Allergy
Gold braces are known for their anti-inflammatory and anti-allergy properties. Thanks to this, they are a practical option for individuals with nickel allergies, which affect more than 18% of the American population, including 11 million children.
Gold compounds have been used for therapeutic and anti-inflammatory purposes throughout history. And their role in orthodontics is no different. Gold braces can reduce inflammation and minimize discomfort during the treatment period.
Easy To Shape And Mold
Gold is malleable—orthodontists can easily shape and mold the gold-plated brackets to fit the patient's teeth perfectly. This flexibility allows for a more customized fit and efficient adjustments throughout the treatment process, ensuring optimal results.
Especially for patients with severely misaligned teeth, gold braces can provide a more comfortable and secure fit while making succeeding adjustments easier.
How Much Do Gold Braces Cost?
For most new patients, the cost of braces is one of the most critical factors in their decision-making process.
On average, gold braces cost between $6,000 and $8,000—considerably higher than their traditional counterparts.
That said, the complete cost of braces varies depending on the location orthodontic treatment takes place, the orthodontist's specific rates, and the complexity of the case.
Are Gold Braces Right For You?
Whether or not gold braces are worth the investment depends on a few factors:
Allergies: If you are allergic to one or more of the compounds in traditional braces, such as nickel and latex, then gold braces are more than worth the additional cost.
Personal preference: If you like to make a bold statement or simply love the look of gold, then you may find that investing in gold braces is worth it.
Maintenance: If you are looking for low-maintenance orthodontic treatment, metal braces may be a better choice.
- Affordability: Gold braces are considerably less affordable than just about every other option on the market. While they may offer additional benefits, you need to make sure that you can afford them before making your decision.
Can You Get Gold-Colored Braces?
Some people prefer to save their money and invest in gold-colored braces instead of gold-plated ones. Gold-colored braces are available in a range of shades, including yellow and rose gold, allowing you to customize your look without breaking the bank.
Gold-colored braces are usually made from traditional metals such as stainless steel or titanium but with a hint of color added to them. While they may not offer the same benefits that come with gold-plated braces, they are a much more affordable alternative.
Do Gold Braces Make Your Teeth Look White?
When selecting braces to enhance the appearance of your teeth, the color of the braces can play a significant role.
While darker colors like black, dark purple, and navy blue can make your teeth look whiter, other options like red or light blue can help your teeth appear brighter.
Gold braces, with their unique and eye-catching appearance, can also affect the perceived color of your teeth.
Gold is a warm-toned color that may not directly make your teeth look whiter; however, it can create a pleasant contrast and draw attention to your smile. The luxurious and attention-grabbing nature of gold braces can make your teeth stand out, highlighting their natural color.
Unfortunately, whitening your teeth with braces isn't an option with gold braces, as they still have brackets. If you are looking to achieve visibly whiter teeth, while realigning them, your best bet is Invisalign.
Are There Any Side Effects Of Gold Braces?
Many of the same side effects traditional braces have can also occur with gold braces.
- Mouth soreness, particularly in the days following an adjustment
- Cavities or tooth decay due to hard-to-clean areas around the braces
- Gum inflammation and irritation
- Excessive saliva production
- Difficulty eating due to pain or tightness
If your teeth hurt after braces, talk to your orthodontist about pain relief.
Do Gold Braces Make Your Teeth Look Yellow?
Since gold is a color that is closely associated with yellow, many people are concerned about wearing gold braces and having their teeth look yellow.
Gold braces themselves don't cause your teeth to look yellow. But braces—when worn for extended periods of time—can cause stains on the teeth due to plaque and tartar buildup.
Do Gold Braces Work For Everyone?
Like all kinds of orthodontic treatment, gold braces are not suitable for everyone. The best way to determine if they are right for you is to talk to your orthodontist. They will be able to assess your teeth and advise you on the best course of action.
For cost-conscious patients, gold braces probably won't be the best investment. But those with allergies to traditional metals or hypersensitivity that causes inflammation may find that gold braces are the only suitable option.
How Will Gold Braces Affect My Treatment?
While gold braces offer a unique and luxurious appearance, it's essential to understand how they may impact your orthodontic treatment.
Here are a few critical elements to consider:
Treatment effectiveness: Gold braces function similarly to traditional metal braces, as the gold plating does not interfere with the brackets' ability to apply pressure and move your teeth.
Comfort: Gold braces have anti-inflammatory and anti-allergy properties, which provide a more comfortable treatment experience for those with sensitivities or allergies to certain metals. Gold is a malleable material, allowing orthodontists to shape the brackets for a customized fit, potentially improving overall comfort.
Oral hygiene: Gold braces naturally resist bacteria, which can help promote better oral health during orthodontic treatment. However, it is still crucial to maintain a consistent oral care routine, including brushing, flossing, and using mouthwash, to ensure clean teeth while wearing braces.
Cost: Gold braces are more expensive than other kinds due to the higher value of the material. Before investing in this option, weigh the aesthetic benefits against the cost to determine if gold braces are the right choice for you.
Aesthetics: The unique appearance of gold braces may affect your confidence during the treatment. If you appreciate the luxurious and eye-catching look, gold braces could boost your self-esteem. However, clear or ceramic braces are better choices.
- Teeth whitening: Most patients who wear gold braces have limited teeth whitening options. Invisalign aligners are a better choice for those who want to whiten their teeth.
Can You Get Braces With A Gold Tooth?
Yes, you can get braces even if you have a gold tooth (or other kind of dental crown). Orthodontists can work around your existing gold crown by using specialized techniques that ensure proper treatment. Whether it's a bracket or a band, your orthodontist can cement them onto your gold crown securely.
Can Gold Braces Damage Your Teeth?
Gold braces, like any other type of braces, will not damage your teeth when used and maintained correctly. The purpose of braces is to move your teeth into their proper positions, which can improve your bite, alignment, and overall dental health.
In fact, having well-aligned teeth can make them easier to clean and maintain, potentially extending their longevity.
Final Thoughts: Are Gold Braces Right For You?
Ultimately, it's up to you to decide the best way to improve your smile. Gold braces are an excellent option, especially for those with allergies or sensitivities. But they aren't for everybody.
Cost is typically the deciding factor when it comes to choosing braces, but other contributing factors such as comfort and aesthetics can also come into play.
If you're considering gold braces, discuss your options with an orthodontist to determine if they are the right choice for you. They will be able to explain the full details of treatment and answer any questions you may have about cost, care, and more.