Invisalign vs. Braces: Pros and Cons

When it comes to straightening your teeth, the number of options available to you can be overwhelming.  Typically in orthodontics, there are two popular methods that are both capable of correcting issues of malocclusion.

Both Invisalign and traditional braces are viable options and cost about the same amount. The one that’s best for you may just be a matter of which you prefer and fits into your lifestyle better. Each treatment comes with its own pros and cons.

What Are Traditional Braces?

With traditional braces, metal brackets (buttons) are cemented to your tooth.  A wire runs along the full arch of your teeth and moves your bite over time.  Your dentist or an orthodontist will perform frequent adjustments, which coax your new smile into existence.

What Is Invisalign?

Though Invisalign therapy hasn’t been around as long as traditional braces, it has quickly become the go-to method for many patients and orthodontists. This two decade’s old system consists of wearing a series of clear, rigid, plastic aligners over your teeth.  Each pair of these trays are worn for two weeks before moving on to the next set.

invisalign-orange-countyThe pressure that the aligners put on your teeth is what makes them move. Since each pair of trays are shaped differently, the teeth adapt to the new mold week after week until the desired results have been reached.

Invisalign Pros  

Possibly the most attractive feature about Invisalign is that the aligners are clear, meaning that when you wear them, most people that you’re talking to won’t notice that you have them in. This is ideal for those individuals that may feel self-conscious about wearing metal braces.

Another advantage to Invisalign is that the aligners are removable. This makes your oral hygiene routine as easy as ever.

Invisalign patients also love the fact that they don’t have to alter their diet during treatment.  Since you have to remove the aligners before your meals, you’re not restricted to the types of food you can eat.

The advanced technology that Invisalign uses allows us to show you a mock-up of what your smile will look like in the end.  We can also get a close estimate of how long your treatment will take. This feature is very popular amongst patients and contributes to Invisalign’s high acceptance rate.

Invisalign Cons

Some patients that live very busy lives find it a hassle to have to keep up with their aligners and take them out to eat and drink. It can also be embarrassing to have to do this, especially if you’re eating out at a restaurant.

The fact that you must brush your teeth after a meal, before putting your aligners back in your mouth causes a bit of inconvenience.  This is especially true if you are in public and don’t have a bathroom nearby.

To stay on track with your treatment, your Invisalign aligners will need to be worn constantly.  A minimum of 22 hours a day is recommended. While this is better than always having on metal braces, some people still find it hard to comply with this rule.

Traditional Braces Pros

Traditional braces can treat more extensive conditions that Invisalign can’t.  For example, braces are the only solution for closing in large gaps between teeth, moving down a tooth that is set high in the gum, or correcting a severe underbite.

Another advantage to braces is that your treatment is fairly passive. Since they are attached to your teeth, you don’t have to worry about keeping up with them.

Traditional Braces Cons

The main disadvantage that keeps patients from moving forward with traditional braces is the appearance of the appliances.  Metal isn’t an attractive look, and that’s enough from most people to steer clear of this orthodontic option. (Fortunately, ceramic options are available!)

Cleaning your braces is also a tedious task that takes a lot of time and attention, as well as requires special tools to do so properly.

The pressure that braces apply to teeth tends to be more bothersome than that of the Invisalign system. Besides that, you also have sharp metal wires and rough brackets that can cause soreness.

Traditional braces also prevent you from being able to play certain wind instruments in band (or at least make it more challenging,) and may cause a temporary speech impairment.

Where to Get Orthodontics in Newport Beach

If you’ve been considering improving your smile with orthodontic treatment, then it’s time to visit Dr. Yazdan at the Center for Restorative and Cosmetic Dentistry in Newport Beach.

During your consultation, we will gladly discuss your concerns and goals to determine which type of orthodontic treatment option is best for you.

We look forward to being a part of your smile transformation.  Give us a call today!

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