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Braces or Invisalign?

So you or your child’s orthodontist has recommended braces. Now you’ve got to make a choice. When faced with the decision between traditional braces and Invisalign, which one do you choose?

Like most decisions, each option has its benefits and drawbacks. Learning more about these 2 popular types of dental correction methods/treatments will help assist you in determining the best possible fit for your unique situation.

Braces and Invisalign aligners share the same ultimate goals: to straighten the teeth (in an aesthetic and functional sense) and to improve overall oral health.

Traditional braces consist of brackets that attach to the teeth and are connected by wire and rubber bands. Braces have been used successfully for decades for the treatment of complicated dental issues.

Invisalign’s clear plastic aligners came onto the market in 1999 and have steadily gained popularity since then due to their practicality and discreet look.

While both types of braces have shown efficacy, each case must be evaluated by an orthodontist to determine the available treatments. Invisalign may be an option for mild to moderate alignment problems, overcrowding, and spacing corrections. For more complicated problems, such as the need to move teeth vertically, traditional braces may be the only choice. The following factors should be considered when determining which one is right for you or your child.

The Orthodontic Effect on Appearance

Appearance is a crucial consideration for those evaluating getting braces. Preteens and teenagers, in particular, tend to be sensitive about their appearance, and anything that makes them different from the average.

However, traditional braces have come a long way in recent years when it comes to style. Once restricted to large metal brackets and bulky wiring, there are now customizable options available, including different materials and colors.

Invisalign’s major selling point is that the aligners are virtually invisible, made of clear plastic that is custom-fit to the wearer’s teeth. Many people prefer this option for its discreet appearance. They’re easy to use, easy to live in, and easy to maintain.

The Costs

Cost is another significant factor. If you have dental insurance, it may cover a percentage of the cost for braces or Invisalign. Speak to your insurance company to determine if this is the case. There is a general price tier and there is also a higher price tier for dental issues on the more severe side of the spectrum. Invisalign’s cost falls in a similar range, but the treatment, unfortunately, is less effective than traditional braces in correcting severe issues.

Convenience & Comfort

Wearing standard braces may cause difficulty eating some foods. With Invisalign, the aligners must be removed before eating or drinking anything, and before brushing the teeth. This can either be considered a benefit or a hassle, depending on personal preference. The teeth also must be brushed before the aligners are replaced to avoid staining.

Although improvements have been made over the years to increase wearability, conventional braces can still cause a certain level of discomfort. After each adjustment, the wearer may experience a feeling of tightness or mild soreness. Usually, this is minimal. Invisalign is considered by many to provide less discomfort as the teeth realign over time.

An orthodontist can evaluate whether or not each patient is a candidate for braces or Invisalign. If you or your child has the choice of either, it’s important to consider all of the factors involved before making a final decision. If you believe you stand to benefit from braces or Invisalign but you’re having trouble making the choice, contact I Song Orthodontics today and we’ll help you make your decision and get on the footpath towards achieving the smile you’ve always wanted.