Should I Get Invisalign or Braces?
If your dentist has recommended you undergo orthodontics treatments to correct misaligned teeth, then you have a big decision to make. It used to be that you got the diagnosis and then simply had to decide between headgear or metal braces. Now, you must decide between braces made of either metal or ceramic or a more modern and less invasive offering like Invisalign.
How does someone decide if one type is right for them? While cost, comfort and their specific case should be considered, it sometimes boils down to personal choice. You might want to consider if a certain type will impact your confidence or your professional life or if one better fits your budget.
To help, let’s review the pros and cons for Invisalign, metal and ceramic braces. Specifically, we’ll look at the differences between these dental alignment methods and what makes a patient a good candidate for each.
Invisalign is a set of clear aligners that are custom-made and removable. Over the years, they have exploded in popularity because they offer the least amount of disruption to a patient’s everyday life. They are made with 3D computer imaging technology and most would agree they look better and feel more comfortable in your mouth.
What makes Invisalign so great is that they can be removed, allowing patients to eat and drink what they want, including certain items that have historically been prohibited to braces wearers. In most cases, Invisalign needs to be in a patient’s mouth for between 20-22 hours a day to work. This leaves just enough time to remove them to consume certain foods and drinks or for that presentation you must give to your colleagues at work.
Other factors that make them attractive, include:
- It is easier to brush and floss than the wire and bracket system of traditional braces.
- Treatment requires fewer consultations. This is possible because most of the work required by the orthodontist is performed at the early stages, typically before the customized aligners are created. Appointments are relegated to progress checks instead of adjustments.
- It’s unfair to say that these aligners are pain-free. It’s more accurate to say that they offer increased comfort. Additionally, because they are made of a special plastic and are properly fitted, they tend to not cut the inside of cheeks.
How Do Invisalign Braces Work Exactly?
Treatments for Invisalign are relatively straightforward. A patient wears a set of aligners every day for roughly two weeks only removing them to brush, floss, eat and drink. They then move on to the next set and continue down this path until the series is complete, meaning their teeth are in the final position determined by their orthodontist.
Typically, a patient will need to attend a checkup every six to eight weeks to ensure that the treatments are proceeding as expected. Treatments last from nine to 15 months and the total number of aligners is between 18 and 30, depending on the case.
Georgian Dental® has improved the already impressive Invisalign process. By using soft pulse ultrasonic and low-level laser therapy, we can augment your treatments and speed up the process to get your teeth straight and your smile beautiful. Additionally, you can avoid having your mouth filled with goop as these aligners are 3D scanned.
Disadvantages of Invisalign Braces
Despite being a popular treatment, Invisalign does have some drawbacks.
Removable aligners require discipline on the part of the patient. With traditional braces, a patient has no choice but to wear them all day and let the treatment run its course. You need to commit to a routine where they are in your mouth for the designated amount of time per day. Your treatment will fail if you do not wear them enough.
Taking your braces out can also pose some challenges with respect to convenience and hygiene. When you want to remove your aligners out in public, you need to make sure they are protected and kept somewhere clean.
Braces are an effective treatment that is suitable for most cases and is widely considered to be the strongest method to straighten teeth. Furthermore, braces can be trusted to deliver positive results if patients carefully follow their treatment protocols.
Metal braces are the most common type especially for people of all ages. Their effectiveness is proven but they can be uncomfortable to wear, are noticeable even from a distance and some patients feel that they impede several aspects of their lives.
Metal braces used to be bulky but modern versions are lightweight, flatter and a lot more comfortable.
Ceramic braces are considered an improvement from their metal counterparts. They offer the same speed of metal braces but with increased comfort and decreased visibility.
This type of braces is functional but their comfort and aesthetic appeal comes at the cost of durability. Because ceramic braces are weaker than metal ones, they are typically only used on the front teeth with metal braces being used for the back teeth.
At one point, braces were viewed as something strictly for kids and teenagers. Nowadays, adults are choosing to straighten their teeth to achieve that radiant smile and to improve their life. The appeal with ceramic braces is that they tend to reduce the stigma associated with braces. They let people maintain their confidence at work or at school or in social settings. They are made with a colour and a translucency that closely matches that of teeth making them much less visible.
In most cases, traditional braces achieve better results than Invisalign. They apply more force to teeth to move them into the desired position. They can also move more teeth than Invisalign.
Figuring out what treatment a patient is a candidate for is based on several factors but primarily the issue they’re trying to fix. Of course, following the advice of your orthodontist is imperative to achieving results.
The reality is that you need to work with your orthodontist to determine which is the better option for your situation. Cost could be a factor as could the severity of the issue you are trying to fix. With respect to cost, this is determined on a case-by-case basis. At Georgian Dental®, we create plans customized to a patient’s need and this will ultimately determine the cost.
All things being equal with respect to your oral health, you need to consider what’s important to you. Is appearance and comfort the most important factors? Do you think you’ll be able to avoid certain foods that aren’t allowed with metal braces? Can you commit to wearing Invisalign aligners at least 20 hours a day?
By answering these questions and consulting with your orthodontist, you can take the first step toward enjoying all the benefits that come with having straight teeth. Lastly, following the advice of your orthodontist is imperative to achieving results and, incidentally, an orthodontist’s skill and experience can weigh heavily into treatment duration and outcome.
Learn more about the team at Georgian Dental®, you’re in good hands.
Book an Appointment Today!
This is a tough decision but we hope having this information can get you closer to choosing the right method to straighten your teeth.
Come in and meet your new orthodontist today. We would be happy to sit down and discuss the options, show you the differences between Invisalign, metal and ceramic braces, so you can make an informed decision.