You may be surprised to know that some people are allergic to braces. More accurately, they are allergic to the nickel found in some brackets and wires. An allergic reaction to nickel can be quite painful and can cause rashes and blisters. During your initial consultation with an orthodontist, be sure to disclose any allergies or sensitivities that you may have. All the same, you shouldn't worry if you're allergic to nickel. There are still many options for orthodontic appliances that are available to you.

Ceramic braces

This nearly invisible option is very strong and does not typically stain. Some patients say that ceramic braces are much more comfortable than the traditional variety and irritate the gums less. Treatment with this option usually lasts a few months longer. 


Invisalign braces are actually plastic aligners that are made specifically for your teeth. The appliances slowly shift your teeth into place over time. Every two weeks, you must wear a new set of aligners. In most cases, Invisalign trays need to be worn 20 to 22 hours per day and are only to be removed when you are eating or cleaning your teeth. This orthodontic device is great for people who have minor issues with misalignment. Your orthodontist will inform you whether or not you ate a good candidate for this treatment.

Other nickel-free options

Gold-plated, titanium or polycarbonate brackets are all nickel-free alternatives to the traditional metal variety. Ask your orthodontist about these options if you are worried about having an allergic reaction to nickel. 

Unfortunately, like many other sensitivities, you can develop an allergy to nickel later in life, possibly after you have already started your orthodontic treatment. If you feel like your braces are causing more pain or irritation than they did previously, make an appointment with your orthodontist as quickly as possible.

Contact an orthodontist in New York City today to learn more about alternatives to traditional metal braces.

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