Orthodontics can be a major source of angst for teenagers and adults alike. The cost of straight teeth is painful for both the mouth and the bank account, and a metal smile is not exactly “in style.” For these reasons, many patients weigh the pros and cons of considering braces at all. Recently, more and more people are choosing Invisalign, the less noticeable alternative to metal braces, as their orthodontic treatment.
You might be thinking, “Why is having straight teeth even important?” According to the American Dental Association, straight teeth can significantly improve your oral and, consequently, overall health. Crowded teeth can contribute to gum inflammation and over-spaced teeth lead to gum exposure, which increases the likelihood of periodontal disease.
Traditional Metal Braces
Braces are the most reliable treatment for straightening teeth. Metal braces are quicker at achieving a straight smile, because they aren’t being removed. Braces can also be made with various materials like ceramic or clear plastic to increase their attractiveness. In some cases, braces can be applied to the inside of the teeth so that they are hardly noticeable.
With braces, special flossing threaders are required to weave the floss underneath the metal wires to reach in between teeth. As a result of this difficulty, food is more likely to become trapped in between teeth, causing irritation and increased plaque and bacteria. This can lead to tooth decay and gum disease.
For braces, a patient must see an orthodontist but some general dentists are expanding their practices to include Invisalign fittings. However, many only consider Invisalign as an alternative to braces for the cosmetic perks. The procedure is attractive for adults and teens who are conscious of their smiles and don’t want to be taken less seriously.
Invisalign involves clear plastic aligner trays that when worn, and changed out every two weeks, straighten teeth much like metal braces, but without the brackets and wire tightening. Because Invisalign allows you to remove the retainer, it’s easier to maintain healthy brushing and flossing habits. The smooth plastic is also less likely to cause irritation to your gums than metal braces will.
Invisalign trays must be changed out every two weeks, and require a patient to be fitted for snugger trays each time. Depending on a patient’s need, this could lengthen the time it takes to achieve a straighter smile. Invisalign patients commonly remove their straightening trays before and during eating and drinking. This allows the teeth time to move back to their old positions and slows the straightening process.
Both traditional braces and Invisalign are effective at treating teeth crowding and spacing issues, crossbite, underbite and overbite. The procedures straighten out your teeth and cost an average of $5,000. When making the decision of which way to go, it’s important that patients have realistic expectations for both the process and its results. Sometimes, additional work is required to achieve a perfectly healthy smile.
Thanks for sharing the comparison. It really helps in my decision on what I want to do for my own teeth.
Thanks for reading, Lisa!
It sort of depends of what type of correction is needed, traditional brackets could be the way to go if it is a considerable correction needed. But, on the other hand, and as you have outlined in the post, Invisalign have considerable advantages against the use of braces.
Thanks for stopping by, Carson!
Just fyi, you don’t have to go to the ortho every 2 weeks for invisalign, usually it’s every 6 weeks and they give 3 trays at each visit
That’s good to know! Thanks for sharing your experience, Laura!
My brother had invisalign braces and he absolutely loved them. I had the traditional metal mouth like most of us, but hey, at least I have a good looking smile now. :)
Thanks for sharing! The smile is what’s important, right? ;)
That’s right! And by the way, let me know if you’d be interested in forming a guest bogging relationship. I’ve got a bunch of fresh, quality content that you’re more than welcome to use on your blog.
Also, keep in mind that not all people are candidates for Invisalign. If considerable correction is needed, traditional brackets might be the only option… at least in the beginning.
I think the wave of the future is Invisalign or something similar . Kids these days don’t want to have a mouth full of metal. Plus, it’s better for dentists they get to see that patient every two weeks! What a great marketing opportunity!
If you want a quick result then you will surely chose the traditional Metal braces over the Invisalign. But if you don’t want any burden during eating and brushing, and you are not in a hurry to have the result then you will surely want to have the Invisalign. You can see results to both braces anyway.
If i were to choose? I would go for the conventional metallic braces than the clear plastic type. Not only that you need to adjust it every 2 weeks Its also a hassle and a waste of time.
For proper teeth, straightening them and to remove the gaps between the teeth, braces are very much helpful, I personally have used braces and had effective results. There are permanent as well as temporary braces, can use any one of them after consulting it with dentist.
I know someone who had braces – they still don’t smile much from force of habit! I’d say invisalign every time myself.