Can You Have An Allergic Reaction to Braces?
When patients are told they need to have braces put on, they typically have a million questions. They may worry first about how hard it will be to brush and floss their teeth, or what foods they won’t be able to enjoy. As they think more and more about the braces they may not initially consider the possibility of an allergic reaction to the metal.
The Metal in Braces
Braces are made up of brackets and wires, both of which are made of metal. The types of metal used can be changed depending on any metal allergies of the patient. Traditional braces are made from stainless steel and are the most commonly used type of braces for both children and adults patients. Since nickel is present in stainless steel, patients with this fairly common allergy are often given gold plated stainless steel braces as a form of protection. Titanium braces are also an option for patients with a nickel allergy, but these braces are often much more expensive.
Other Potential Allergies
Some patients will also need to use headgear or elastic ligatures as part of their orthodontic treatment. Rubber bands used as elastic ligatures has a slight potential for allergic reaction in patients sensitive to latex. This is easy to fix, though, as many different companies offer latex free options in the same range of colors as their latex counterparts. The metals used in headgear should match the metal used for the braces in patients with metal allergies as well.
The best way to deal with allergies as a result of braces is to talk to your dental team about any and all allergies you’ve had. Patients who have had a problem with a body piercing will be able to inform their doctor about it so that the appropriate braces can be fitted. Often, children are given allergy tests as part of their medical history and these results can be obtained through the family doctor so that the dental office is able to ensure the patient will not have problems once the braces are put on.