Orthodontist Questions Dental Braces

Can I get braces for my upper teeth only?

I require braces to correct the alignment in my upper teeth. My bottom row teeth are fine. Will I require braces for both the rows or only the upper row should work?

17 Answers

You can certainly have braces only on the upper teeth. After an evaluation by an orthodontist, you will be advised on the best treatment for your individual needs. Often upper-only treatment is perfectly acceptable!
You definitely can do braces on only one of the upper teeth, however, for a variety of reasons that may not be the best option. An orthodontic specialist will be able to take records of both your upper and lower teeth, photos, and X-rays and show you why you may or may not want to treat upper and lower teeth. Sometimes straightening the upper teeth will make them not "fit" with the lower teeth as well and the bite will not feel comfortable. That is one reason some orthodontists may recommend to treat upper and lower teeth together with braces or clear aligners such as Invisalign Clear Aligners.
While this is possible sometimes, most of the time you would require braces for both the arches (top and bottom). When aligning teeth for esthetics, an orthodontist is also making sure you have a healthy and atraumatic occlusion. To make this happen, you would most probably require braces on the upper and lower jaws.
Under certain circumstances, braces can be put on just the upper teeth. Several factors are involved in making that decision, i.e., any crossbites, the occlusion (the way the teeth fit together), etc.
I hope this answers your question.
It depends. If your top teeth can be straightened to match the lower teeth and not change your bite, you should be okay. But since the top and bottom teeth need to match up or occlude in a certain way, it may help to have braces on the lower teeth also. Talk with the orthodontist and see what your options are. I tell my patients that I work for them, as long as they understand the limitations of single arch treatment, and the benefits of comprehensive treatment.  
Braces on the upper teeth will sometimes work.. The issues which will cause this to be a bad idea are; Bite will not fit together , creating an overbite, underbite, or what we call an end on bite. Also, frequently the reason that the teeth are not properly aligned is that the bite not only in the front , but the back is bad. If this is the case, you are doomed to a lifetime of at least 12 hour a day retention, as the bite being good is what uses the lower teeth to support the upper, and vice versa.
Every patient's case is different. In some cases, patients can have upper or lower treatment only. However, most cases require both upper and lower treatment to get proper teeth alignment and bite correction. Consult with an orthodontist to see your options.
Orthodontic treatment is elective, so, yes, you can have upper treatment only. But this is like clapping with one hand. The lower teeth may limit what can be done for the upper teeth. For the best result, both jaws should be treated together.
In the majority of cases, braces are required for both so that the upper and lower teeth fit together after the braces are removed. Each case needs to be assessed with full records and by an orthodontist, who are the only dentists who are properly trained to assess and treat alignment and crowding problems.
You don't go to your GP doctor for a heart operation!!!
It depends on how your bite is before you start treatment.


Tony Skanchy, DMD, MDS
On rare occaision, you can get away with treating only one arch with braces. However, without having control of BOTH arches, it is VERY difficult to obtain ideal occlusion. Things like arch form, overbite, overjet, midlines, the front to back curve of the lower arch...would all have to be evaluated before that question could be answered. Not only is it important to have esthetically pleasing teeth, but you also want them to fit properly and function optimally! So unless your lower arch is perfect, I would be skeptical about whether or not upper braces alone could give you the best result!
Sometimes we can complete orthodontic treatment on the top or bottom only. The one thing to remember is that the upper and lower teeth are similar to a jar and lid. Sometimes if you change the jar or lid too much, it may no longer fit its counterpart. I would recommend seeing an orthodontist to see if treating only the top would work for you. Hope this helps...Dr.B.
Every case is different, but typically people need both top and bottom teeth addressed so that the bite aligns properly. Just straightening the top, or just straightening the bottom, could result in a misaligned bite which can cause issues such as jaw pain, tooth chipping and possibly aesthetic concerns.
There are occasions where a patient can get just top braces or just bottom braces. However, it depends on your bite, your jaw alignment and other factors that only an orthodontist can determine. It is best to make an appointment with an orthodontist to discuss your individual case.
It is really hard to answer your question without fully knowing what your occlusion is like, but in short, there are situations where it would be appropriate to have braces on the top teeth only. Your Orthodontist should be able to advise you best.
It is certainly possible to do braces on just the upper arch. The question is, what type of bite do you have and do the upper and lower teeth meet together properly. It is possible to have misaligned upper teeth and straight lower teeth and still have a bite problem that ideally would be best to treat with braces on both arches if your goal is to straighten your teeth and correct your bite. If your bite is good and your upper teeth are malaligned then upper braces only is a good solution to your problem. Hope that helps.
Sure you can - the patient drives the treatment not the doctor. thank you!