Metal braces are the most common type. They are made of high-grade stainless steel. Today's metal braces are smaller, more comfortable and more attractive.
Ceramic braces are made of translucent (clear) material. They are most popular with adult patients, due to their cosmetic appeal. The only drawback to ceramic brackets is that they are more fragile, and the elastic ties can discolor between orthodontic visits.
Self-ligating braces do not require ties (or ligatures) to hold the arch wire into the bracket. Self-ligating braces have less friction, which allows teeth to move smoothly and efficiently along the arch wire, resulting in less office visits, less discomfort, and better hygiene.