Are you wondering about adult braces' cost in the UK? The cost of orthodontic treatment can be a significant concern, but with the increasing popularity of adult braces, there have been some great innovations in materials and technology, making treatment more effective and less noticeable than ever before.
If you're considering getting your teeth straightened or have a teenager who may need orthodontic work, this guide is for you. You'll find answers to questions including the cost of braces in the UK, the types of braces available, how they work, what it's like wearing them, and cheaper alternatives.
We understand that the cost of braces can be a sticking point if you have to pay for private treatment, so we've included some tips for finding the right provider and making your orthodontic treatment fit your budget.
Read on to feel more confident about taking the first steps towards a straighter smile!
If you're looking for an affordable braces alternative try SmileDirectClub. They're practically invisible and you never have to see a dentist in person if you don't want to. Plus, they have the convenience of being removable.
It's quick and easy to find out if you're a good candidate; just fill out SmileDirectClub's free online assessment.
Below you can read more about why SmileDirectClub is a popular option for braces.
Table of contents
- 1 How much do braces cost in the UK?
- 2 How do braces work?
- 3 What are the different types of braces for teeth?
- 4 What are the alternatives to braces for teeth straightening?
- 5 Adult braces before and after
- 6 What's it like wearing braces as an adult?
- 7 How do I know if I need orthodontic work?
- 8 Conclusion
- 9 FAQs
How much do braces cost in the UK?
The cost of braces in the UK is very wide-ranging. Private braces cost £1,500 to £5,000 for most people, with the average cost of metal braces for adults around £2,000 to £3,000. Children up to age 18 can get braces for free with the NHS if deemed medically necessary.
Braces can appear to be costly. However, your new smile ought to endure forever as long as you adhere to the doctor's consideration guidelines whenever you've had braces.
What's more, if you follow up on your post-braces care plan appropriately, the investment will last a lifetime. So instead of thinking of it as spending a lot of money all at once, you can picture it as a lifetime of benefits.
Dr Azariy Yusupov, DDS, Amazing Smiles Orthodontics
What do private braces cost in the UK?
Private braces cost in the UK can vary significantly depending on the type of braces you choose and the complexity of your case. Some types of braces may be less expensive than others. The overall cost of treatment can also be affected by the length of treatment and any additional procedures that may be needed.
The cost of braces for adults is one of the things that prevents many people from seeking treatment.
Here you can see roughly how much different types of dental braces cost for adults and teens with private orthodontic treatment in the UK. These prices assume that both the upper and lower teeth are treated. Higher costs may apply if particularly complex work is required.
Type of Appliance
£3,500 - £5,500
£1,300 - £1,600
£2,000 - £10,000
£2,000 - £6,000
Self-ligating (including Damon)
£1,500 - £6,000
£1,500 - £3,000
Since metal braces cost less than clear and white ceramic fittings, a common solution is to use ceramic or clear brackets for the top front teeth (which are most visible), then have cheaper metal braces on the remaining teeth which usually stay out of sight.
However, if you really don't want it to be obvious that you're wearing braces, clear aligners like Invisalign offer the best balance between appearance, cost and efficiency.
If you need help covering the cost of braces, there are various ways to finance dental work.
Finding an orthodontist with the best braces prices near you
First and foremost it is important to check if the dentists or orthodontists in your area are experienced, well-qualified, and have opening hours to suit you. Asking family and friends for a recommendation is also a good idea.
Braces prices in the UK will vary across different regions and from one dentist to another, so it's worth shopping around to get an idea of costs.
An orthodontist won't be able to provide a final quote until they have examined your teeth during a consultation, which may itself incur a small fee. Many dentists offer payment plans to make treatment more affordable.
Be sure to check exactly what is included in your quotation and what you'll have to pay for separately. Consider things like tooth extractions, retainers, mouthguards, and ongoing checkups after your braces are removed.
Also, remember that you'll need to travel to your dentist for regular checkups, so it's more convenient to find one located near your home or office.
Now that you know roughly how much braces cost in the UK, let's discuss how braces work and the different types available.
How do braces work?
Orthodontic braces come in various types, each of which functions slightly differently, but all with the common goal of correcting misalignment of the teeth and jaw. We will delve into the specifics of the different kinds of braces later so that you can have a better understanding of how they work.
There are four main reasons why your dentist or orthodontist may recommend you have dental braces fitted:
- Your teeth are crooked, crowded or protruding and need to be realigned
- You have gaps between your teeth that need to be closed
- You have a malocclusion (e.g. overbite or underbite), meaning the relationship between your upper and lower teeth isn't quite right and this is affecting your bite
- After losing your baby teeth, there isn't enough space for adult teeth to grow through properly
This video animation demonstrates the correction of some of these dental problems:
If these problems are left untreated they can lead to:
- Difficulty eating
- Difficulty cleaning teeth properly, resulting in further dental problems
- Increased chance of damage to prominent teeth
- Headaches from jaw and muscle strain
- Speech impediments
- Self-consciousness with the appearance of teeth
Who can have orthodontic braces?
Orthodontic braces can be worn by people of all ages, as long as their teeth and gums are healthy. Children, adolescents, and adults can all benefit from wearing braces to correct problems with dental alignment.
Treatment may be more effective at certain stages of development, so it is generally recommended that children start wearing dental braces between the ages of 10 and 14. Teeth straightening works best when the teeth and jaw are still growing, but treatment won't usually begin until most adult teeth have come through.
However, braces can still be effective at any age. The British Orthodontic Society reported in June 2020 that 80% of its members had been fitting more adults with braces, up from 75% in 2016.
The typical adult patient is female and aged 26-55, but a previous survey showed that the number of men seeking orthodontic work as adults is on the rise.
Braces aren’t just for kids anymore. More than 20% of people with braces are now adults and 1.4 million Americans over the age of 18 have braces – a 40% increase since the late 80s.
Adults are getting braces for a variety of reasons: to achieve a better smile or to fix the effects of conditions like gum and bone loss, tooth decay or jaw joint pain.
But braces aren’t for everyone and you have to make a commitment. Here are a few questions to ask yourself and your orthodontist before you begin adult orthodontic treatment:
- Are you willing to put up with minor changes in your appearance during treatment?
- Are you willing to abstain from certain sticky and hard treats?
- Are you willing to endure some tenderness in your mouth and teeth after adjustments?
- Are you willing to cooperate with the instructions and suggestions of your orthodontist?
- Are your treatment expectations realistic?
Dr. Clarke Stevens
Some adults may have braces fitted for health reasons, but in many cases, it's more to do with the aesthetic appearance of their teeth and smile.
Although fixed braces are still the most common choice, more and more adults are opting for clear aligners which let them straighten their teeth without it being so obvious.
One condition of having braces is that your teeth are in relatively good condition and you maintain good oral hygiene.
If your teeth have already been damaged by decay, you have gum disease, or you have had extensive restorative work such as crowns, you may not be able to have all types of orthodontic treatment. In this case, you could consider veneers or other cosmetic dental work to improve the appearance of your teeth.
What are the different types of braces for teeth?
There are several different types of braces, including metal braces, ceramic braces, lingual braces, and clear aligners. Each type has its own unique features and benefits. The most suitable option for an individual will depend on their specific needs and preferences.
Wearing teeth braces as a teen can make you feel self-conscious about your appearance, but worrying about the way you look doesn't stop when you reach adulthood. If anything, you become more aware of your appearance. It's natural to want to avoid the ‘train track' look which makes it so obvious you're undergoing orthodontic work.
In fact, many adults and teens are put off the idea of wearing braces because of how others may perceive them.
This is especially true if they have a professional appearance to maintain at work or have a big event like a wedding or graduation coming up. Adults might also worry they'll look immature if they wear braces.
Fortunately, conventional ‘metal mouth' braces are no longer the only option for those wanting a perfect smile. Modern ceramic materials can be made to match your natural tooth colour, while clear aligners like Invisalign are almost impossible to detect. This draws much less attention to the fact that you are having your teeth straightened.
Below is a summary of the main advantages and disadvantages of dental braces of different kinds. Following that, you will find more detailed information to help you decide which type is right for you.
Clear removable aligners (invisible braces)
Ceramic (tooth coloured or white)
Self-ligating (including Damon)
Invisible braces / clear aligners
Invisible removable teeth straighteners are a completely different alternative to conventional metal braces. They use a series of clear plastic aligners which fit over your teeth and guide them into their correct position over time.
The official term for this method of teeth straightening is ‘clear aligners', but you'll most often hear them referred to as ‘invisible' or ‘removable' braces.
There are several brands of clear aligner braces in the UK, other examples being SmileDirectClub, NewSmile, ClearCorrect, Straight My Teeth, and Diamond Whites, and Impress aligners. Invisalign is a very popular brand, but they are, however, also one of the most expensive brands of clear aligners on the market.
We recommend speaking to your dentist before making any decisions on which orthodontic treatment is right for you.
- Free scans at 17 UK SmileShop locations
- Nighttime aligners available
- Lifetime Smile Guarantee™
- £1,639 or £69.43/month + free teeth whitening
SmileDirectClub has been offering aligner treatment at home for over 8 years, making them one of the most experienced companies in this market.
Treatment takes 4-6 months on average, or 10 months for nighttime-only aligners. Their UK-based customer care is available 24/7 should you need to reach out at any time.
There are several ways you can get started:
- Take a smile assessment to see if you're eligible
- Order a home impression kit
- Visit a SmileShop for free scans (17 UK locations)
Every aligner package comes with free bright on™ teeth whitening, so you can whiten your teeth while you straighten them!
- Free retainers and whitening
- Nighttime aligners available
- 0% interest finance options
£1,395£1,295 or £83.33/month
NewSmile is a Canadian company that brought its clear aligners to the UK market in 2022. NewSmile aligners are made from the clearest material and the company offers excellent service at the best price.
They don't have any physical locations, so you'll need to purchase an aligner kit to get started. One of their Impression Specialists will guide you through the process on a video call when you're ready.
NewSmile aligners are very affordable, costing just £1,395 (currently discounted to £1,295). But even better, this price includes whitening foam to use in your aligners, plus your first set of retainers!
Choose their daytime package for treatment in 4-6 months, or nighttime aligners for a more discreet treatment that takes 8-10 months. Both options come with 0% interest payment plans available.
If you choose Invisalign aligners, your dentist or orthodontist will scan your mouth to create a 3D image of your teeth. This will then be used to plan your treatment. Your tailor-made aligners should be ready within a month of this initial consultation.
As well as their braces for adults, Invisalign also produce a special kind of aligner brace for teenagers. This system is designed with features specifically to help teenagers get the most out of wearing them.
Invisalign treatment is suitable for a wide range of orthodontic cases but they aren't right for everyone. If your orthodontic case is more complex, then Invisalign aligners may be a good option, but if your case is milder then it may be worth looking for a cheaper alternative like SmileDirectClub.
The average Invisalign treatment takes 12-18 months, but it can be shorter or longer depending on the degree of correction required.
Invisalign aligners are completely removable which means you can clean and floss your teeth as normal, decreasing the chances of tooth decay and gum disease while you're wearing them.
In short, removable braces from Invisalign offer efficient and convenient teeth straightening that's very hard for other people to notice. However, Invisalign treatment may be unaffordable for some people, which is why many often prefer more affordable treatment options like SmileDirectClub.
Our guide to invisible braces has more information on this treatment and costs.
SmileDirectClub is an at-home clear aligner company that delivers treatment straight to your door. They deal directly with the consumer so you don't need to go in for any dental appointments and because of this, they are much cheaper than braces or in-person aligners like Invisalign.
Like Invisalign, they are a series of clear plastic aligners that straighten your teeth gradually over time. These aligners are most suited to those with mild to moderate orthodontic issues, so if your case is more complex you may need to get traditional braces.
If you are interested in these aligners, the first step is to order an at-home impression kit, or visit one of their physical locations called a SmileShop, to get 3D scans. Then a dentist or orthodontist will check if you are eligible for treatment, and if you are, they will prescribe your treatment.
Once you are happy with your plan you will approve it and then receive all of your aligners in the post (around 4-5 weeks later). Every couple of weeks you will switch to a new aligner as they gradually straighten and align your teeth. Then, when your treatment is complete, you will need to wear a SmileDirectClub retainer to maintain your smile.
If you only need mild orthodontic correction, then these aligners might be right for you. The easiest way to find out if you're a candidate is to take an online assessment.
NewSmile aligners are another affordable clear aligner treatment that can help you straighten your teeth at home. These clear aligners cost less than Invisalign and are a very popular alternative treatment. NewSmile requires 22 hours of wear every day and the treatment typically last around six months.
Treatment with NewSmile starts with a quick online assessment to let you know if you are a suitable candidate. Most at-home clear aligner treatments, including NewSmile, are suitable for mild to moderate teeth straightening.
Once you've been determined to be a suitable candidate for treatment, you will be sent an impression kit to make your impressions and send it back so you can receive your 3D Treatment Preview. You'll then receive a new set of aligners every two weeks and you'll also receive free whitening treatments.
If you prefer not to wear aligners during the day, NewSmile offers night aligners. The treatment process is exactly the same, with the only difference being that you only wear your aligners at night.
Click here to read more about NewSmile's night aligners.
Inman Aligners are similar to clear aligners as they are made from a clear plastic material, and are removable.
However, they are also made up of metal springs and bars which make them visible when worn. This also makes them quite bulky to wear as the clear plastic envelops the metal parts as well as covering your teeth.
These are suitable for people who only need to make small adjustments to their front few teeth. It isn't possible to treat the entire mouth with this appliance, and the cost of Inman Aligners becomes less competitive with this in mind.
If you think there is only one type of metal teeth brace, you're in for a surprise. Yes, traditional fixed braces are still around and are probably the best option if you want cheap braces. But there are other styles to consider, which offer different benefits.
Traditional metal teeth braces
Even plain old metal fixed braces have come a long way from the ‘train tracks' you or your parents may have experienced at school. They have become lighter, smaller and less noticeable as technology has improved.
Having these braces fitted takes 1-2 hours. The process itself shouldn't hurt but it's normal for teeth to feel sore after the initial fitting and after each adjustment.
Treatment using a conventional fixed appliance usually takes 12-24 months. During this time you'll be at increased risk of tooth decay so it's important to take good care of your teeth and clean your braces carefully.
What are metal braces made of?
The metal brackets used in fixed metal braces are usually made from high-grade stainless steel, sometimes combined with titanium. These brackets are attached to each tooth and a flexible metal wire, made from stainless steel and other metals, is threaded through each one.
Small rubber bands or metal ties are used to secure the wire. By tightening the wire in different places, orthodontists can manoeuvre teeth into the desired position.
Other components of metal teeth braces may include:
- Larger elastic/rubber bands or chains are used to connect different teeth (from top to bottom) and pull them in certain directions
- Metal bands (orthodontic bands) placed around some molars to help with straightening
- Some kind of headgear that must to be worn at night to aid treatment (usually only when significant correction is required)
For teens (and even some adults!) one bonus with this style of brace is you can choose the colour of the elastic band used on each of the brackets. Coloured braces at least allow you to make a style statement while your teeth are being fixed. Another advantage is that metal fixed braces cost less than most other styles – and may be available on the NHS.
Self-ligating braces are a different type of metal brace designed to make braces treatment faster and more comfortable. In terms of outward appearance, self-ligating braces are much the same as conventional braces in that they use a bracket and wire system.
However, uniquely designed brackets are used to allow free movement and self-adjustment of the wire inside the brackets instead of using elastic bands or metal ties to keep the straightening archwire in place.
Some brands, such as Damon, have a clear option with transparent brackets for patients who are more image-conscious.
The self-tightening system used in Damon braces combined with advanced technology heat-activated wires means that the process of aligning teeth is relatively gentle.
With traditional brackets, patients usually experience pain or discomfort after each adjustment, but self-ligating braces are constantly adjusting at a much steadier pace.
The lack of rubber bands in this style of brackets means they are more hygienic, too. The brackets are designed to hold onto less food than the traditional style.
Self-ligating metal brackets can also work faster than traditional ones because they are more efficient at moving teeth. This, along with the fact that they require fewer checkups with your orthodontist, makes them one of the more affordable braces for teeth.
Another option for people who want to straighten their teeth inconspicuously is lingual braces. These are similar to traditional fixed metal braces for adults, except the fittings go behind the teeth, facing inwards, so are hardly noticeable from the outside.
These are also known as ‘hidden' or ‘Incognito' braces (which is actually a brand name). The brackets fixed to the inner surface of the teeth can be standard fittings, but they can also be moulded to the shape of each tooth individually. The latter option is, understandably, much more expensive.
These braces are still visible when the mouth is open wide, but it is not immediately obvious that the person is wearing them.
The awkward position of lingual brace brackets means they can be difficult to clean and adjustments are likely to take longer than with regular braces. They can also cause more severe speech problems due to their position in relation to the tongue.
Finally, these braces cost more than traditional styles – especially if the metal brace brackets are custom-made to fit each tooth. So although they may be appealing at first glance, it's worth considering the pros and cons carefully, especially when compared to clear aligners.
The brackets for ceramic braces are made from a material that's either clear or the same colour as teeth, making them less obvious than conventional metal braces. The wire used to connect the brackets can also be tooth-coloured.
Because these work in the same way as traditional braces, they are just as effective. This does also mean that they carry the same potential for discomfort.
The main downside of clear or white braces is that the elastic bands used on them can stain easily if not cleaned properly. The material used also makes them more expensive than the average cost of metal braces.
For many people, ceramic braces like Clarity braces, or Damon braces provide a good balance between cost, speed and appearance. Transparent brace brackets are not noticeable from a distance and are less distracting close-up than metal braces.
Some ceramic braces are slightly more expensive, such as Radiance Plus which is the most luxurious option. The brackets are completely clear and are made from polished sapphire, making them stain-resistant and more comfortable due to the polished rounded edges.
However, even the clearest ceramic brackets are more noticeable than clear aligners, so it's worth discussing the pros and cons of each with your orthodontist.
What are the alternatives to braces for teeth straightening?
There are several alternatives to braces that can be used to straighten teeth, including clear aligners, retainers, palatal expanders, and orthodontic headgear.
In most cases, it's possible to realign teeth without having metal glued to them – which is what most people consider braces to be. Clear aligners are one way to do this.
However, some people want to avoid braces altogether, can't visit a dentist's office regularly, or simply can't afford the treatment. Fortunately, there are other ways to straighten teeth without braces – at least in certain cases.
For instance, veneers can be used to improve the appearance of crooked teeth, and composite restorations can help close gaps in teeth.
Then there is the option of home teeth aligner kits, which are usually cheaper than getting braces at the dentist but have some limitations and risks.
If you are considering removable teeth straighteners and want to know more, read our article on the best teeth aligners in the UK.
Adult braces before and after
Orthodontics can achieve some pretty amazing transformations. The time-lapse video below shows how a variety of patients' teeth looked before and after braces treatment.
Your teeth after braces will be better aligned so you can eat and take care of them more easily. When you have crooked teeth the spaces between them are harder to clean which allows increased plaque accumulation over them. So getting braces may reduce your chances of cavities later in life.
Orthodontia should also improve the aesthetics of your smile. These ‘before and after braces' photos show the transformation that can occur:
Orthodontic appliances usually get to work quite fast; the third example above shows teeth just nine weeks after the initial fitting. But even if your teeth start to look better after just a couple of months, it's likely your treatment will need to continue for a while longer to get your teeth moved into their final position.
We have a separate page of Invisalign before and after pictures which may also be of interest.
Wearing retainers after braces
After your braces come off, your teeth won't necessarily want to stay in their new, straighter position. A retainer will help keep them in place. The length of time you have to wear one will depend on your individual circumstances – your dentist will advise you on this.
If you've only had your front teeth straightened, you may be able to get a fixed retainer. This is a metal wire that's glued to the back of your teeth to keep them in place.
The other option is a removable retainer, and these come in a couple of different styles – Essix (clear) and Hawley (pictured). They might need to be worn during the day, at least at first, but can easily be taken out for special occasions and to eat. On the downside, they're easy to lose and expensive to replace.
Whichever type you choose, you'll need to clean your retainer properly to prolong its life. Read more about how retainers work and the different types available in our full guide to retainers.
What's it like wearing braces as an adult?
Wearing braces as an adult can be a different experience than wearing them as a teenager, as adults may have different concerns and expectations. However, the basic process of wearing braces is generally the same for adults and children.
In many countries, including the US, the high cost of braces for adults (even with insurance) has turned them into a status symbol of sorts. This view has been slower to spread to the UK, where there is still some stigma attached to wearing braces.
Nowadays, it's becoming more common for adults to seek treatment later in life – either because they missed out on it as a child or because of the amount that adult braces cost in the UK with private treatment.
“Many adults who have undergone orthodontic treatment report higher levels of self-esteem and their quality of life is often significantly improved”
It's still understandable for adults to worry about being treated differently at work, being teased by friends, or being viewed differently by potential partners as a result of wearing braces. This is one of the reasons why alternatives such as removable aligners and clear braces are so popular.
Invisible braces not only make it easier to eat but can be taken out for short periods – for example, important meetings – if the wearer is particularly self-conscious.
On a practical note, some adult brace-wearers report difficulties with speaking and eating at first, but soon become accustomed to their new appliance and find ways to adjust. Most people get used to wearing braces within a month, and no longer notice them after six months or so.
Cleaning around fixed braces takes a little extra time, but there are special tools such as orthodontic floss, interdental brushes and oral irrigators which can make the job easier.
Do adult braces hurt?
If you get dental braces as an adult you're asking your body to break down bone in your jaw that holds your teeth in their current position, then re-grow securing teeth in their new position. The following video shows how this happens:
So yes, it's normal to feel some discomfort – especially in the days following each visit to the dentist or orthodontist where your brace is adjusted. There's a chance you may also experience some irritation to your cheek tissue, which can lead to mouth sores.
However, in return for a year or two of occasional discomfort, you get a smile you're confident to show off for the rest of your life.
Some people need to get dental spacers before braces to create some space around certain teeth, especially for fitting molar bands. Spacers usually cause some pain and discomfort for the first day or two after fitting.
Here are some ways to stop braces from hurting:
- Take over-the-counter painkillers to ease any occasional soreness and aches
- Eat soft foods such as soup, eggs, pasta, mashed potato and yoghurt if you experience discomfort when biting
- Use dental wax to cover any brackets or wires that are irritating your mouth
- If you do develop mouth sores, avoid touching them with your tongue or fingers as this will make them worse
- Anaesthetic mouth gels can be used to numb painful areas – this can be especially useful at night if you're having trouble sleeping
- Rinsing your mouth with warm salt water will help ease oral pain
If you experience severe pain from wearing braces or a wire comes loose and is at risk of causing injury to part of your mouth, you should contact your dentist or orthodontist to make an urgent appointment.
While there are some foods you may avoid simply for comfort, there are others that are prohibited altogether if you have a fixed appliance.
Invisible aligners offer most flexibility with eating as they can be completely removed – but remember you must clean your teeth before putting them back in again.
Your orthodontist will tell you which foods to avoid eating with fixed braces. These usually include:
- Hard foods like nuts and boiled sweets
- Foods you bite into like apples, raw carrots, crusty bread and corn on the cob
- Sticky foods like caramel and chewing gum
- Crunchy foods like popcorn, crisps and ice
- Chewy foods like gummy sweets, bagels and tough meats
You can also cause damage just by biting on hard things like your fingernails or the end of a pencil, so you must be mindful of what you put in your mouth.
If your braces get damaged while you're eating you may not even realise it, and this can prolong your treatment. You may have to pay for certain parts to be replaced, too. These are both good reasons to follow the instructions from your dentist!
You can read our full guide about what you can eat with braces to find out more.
How do I know if I need orthodontic work?
After reading all of this, you might be wondering “Do I need braces?“. The simple answer is that even if there is no medical need, there is nothing stopping you from getting cosmetic teeth straightening.
So if you're unhappy with how your teeth look and you think adult braces would help, go ahead and book an appointment to find out more.
If you think you're eligible for braces on the NHS you'll need to make an appointment with your dentist who will then refer you to an orthodontist. We have a separate guide on NHS braces if you'd like to learn more.
With private treatment, you can skip straight to having a consultation with your chosen orthodontist or dentist.
This video from the British Orthodontic Society explains more about your choices when it comes to braces:
Should you decide you want a certain brand for you or your teenager, such as Invisalign or Damon, you will need to search for orthodontists or dentists near you who offer that particular system.
It's never too late to take the first step towards a more confident smile. Now you understand how much different kinds of dental braces cost in the UK, you just need to decide which type will suit you best. This probably comes down to a balance between price, comfort, appearance and results.
In summary, we can say that:
- Most teens and adults would prefer to avoid the ‘train track' metal braces look.
- Ceramic braces are less obvious than metal, but only from a distance, and can be just as uncomfortable.
- Lingual braces have the ‘invisibility' factor, but with a high price tag.
- Invisible aligners arguably provide the most comfortable, affordable and efficient straightening solution if you don't want it to be obvious you're wearing braces.
If you have a mild to moderate orthodontic case and like the idea of doing everything from the comfort of your own home then SmileDirectClub might be right for you. If you are eligible for treatment, SmileDirectClub offers teeth straightening treatment at an affordable fixed price, all without having to see a dentist or orthodontist if you don't want to.
They also have great UK-based customer service, so there is always someone available to speak to about your treatment. If you are interested in getting SmileDirectClub aligners, book a free appointment at your nearest SmileShop, or order an impression kit online now for just £10.
The price of SmileDirectClub compared to metal braces is much cheaper – and you get to not only avoid having to go to the dentist for appointments but also the discomfort and appearance of fixed brace brackets.
However, if you're looking for an even more affordable alternative you can opt for NewSmile, with treatment prices starting at at £1,295. You can also choose their night aligners and get free teeth whitening treatments.
If you have a very complex case then you may need fixed braces, but you can still opt for clear brackets to make them less noticeable. Speak to your dentist before making a decision on any treatment, so you can be sure you are choosing the best one for your needs.
Whatever you decide on, we hope this article has helped you understand all the options available.
Do I need braces?
There is a difference between a medical need and a desire for cosmetic improvement. Even if you don't technically need braces, you may still choose to get them if you're unhappy with your teeth. Treatment for cosmetic straightening is usually quicker than if significant realignment is needed.
What are the best adult braces?
Metal braces are effective, but they don't look great. Adults wanting a more discreet way to straighten their teeth usually opt for clear aligners like Invisalign. These cost about the same as metal braces but are much harder to notice.
How long do braces take to work?
Orthodontic treatment can be as fast as six months if you only need minor tooth movement. However, for more complex cases it can take 18-24 months and perhaps even longer.
How are braces put on?
The orthodontist precisely applies a small bracket to each tooth using cement. Once all brackets are in place, a wire is threaded through them and small elastics keep the wire in place.
How long does it take to put braces on?
It takes around an hour for each jaw to be fitted. Since it can be uncomfortable keeping your mouth open for this long, your orthodontist may spread the process over two appointments. This also gives you time to get used to the first arch before you have the second one fitted.
Does it hurt getting braces fitted?
It might be a bit uncomfortable, and your teeth will probably feel tight once the wire is in place, but the fitting process itself shouldn't cause you any pain. If your jaw starts to ache, you can ask your dentist to stop for a minute while you move around a bit.
Does it hurt getting braces off?
Your dentist will remove your elastics one last time and then use special dental tools to break the brackets off your teeth. You will feel some pressure, but it shouldn't hurt.
After that, you'll need a thorough teeth clean and polish to remove all the cement and make sure your teeth are in good condition. If you're wondering how to remove braces, you can read our full guide here — but never try to do it at home.
Can I do teeth whitening with braces?
You should check with your orthodontist first to make sure that none of the whitening gel ingredients will harm your braces. If you have fixed metal braces, it's best to wait until they come off. Otherwise, you'll end up with darker patches on your teeth where the brackets were.
Dentistry Online: Orthodontic treatment increases in popularity amongst adults. Consulted 3rd January 2023.
British Dental Journal: Number of UK adults seeking braces is rising. Consulted 3rd January 2023.
British Orthodontic Society: As orthodontic practices re-open new statistics reveal rise in adults seeking tooth straightening treatment amid concern over ‘DIY’ treatment. Consulted 3rd January 2023.
Prices stated are indicative only and are based on publicised treatment prices at dental clinics across the UK.