Orthodontic brackets, a type of orthodontic appliance (which is a much broader category), are the small structural components that an orthodontic specialist or other dental professional uses to guide your teeth and bite into a corrected position.
In times past, the common description of “metal braces” or “metal brackets” were used interchangeably with braces. Times have changed, however, and now these appliances are fabricated from a wide range of materials including ceramic, or sometimes even a type of strong plastic called polycarbonate. The advantage is that the braces are clear, or tooth-colored. Typically, these clear brackets are slightly larger and can also be more expensive, although anything related to fees is highly variable from doctor to doctor, and usually more dependent on your case diagnosis than the type of materials used.