If you are looking to straighten your teeth, you probably know a bit about traditional braces and Invisalign. Because getting braces may seem like a huge step and commitment, it is best to know the pros and cons of all your options so that you choose the best for you and your lifestyle. Luckily, we have compiled a list of the pros and cons of both metal braces and Invisalign, so you do not have to worry about making the wrong choice. By the end of this article, you will have a better idea of which option you would like to ask your orthodontist about.
What is the difference between metal braces and Invisalign?
While both traditional metal braces and Invisalign work to straighten your teeth and improve your overall oral health, the process in which they straighten your teeth is what differs. Depending on your lifestyle and unique needs, you and your orthodontist will need to decide based on what will work best in the long run.
- Metal braces: Traditionally, metal braces are the most commonly used dental treatment to treat crooked teeth. During this procedure, metal brackets will be glued to the enamel of your teeth, and your orthodontist will then maneuver the metal wires through the brackets to help shape and mold your teeth over time. Nowadays, the wires placed in your bracket can come in the same color as your enamel, so they are less noticeable. People with metal braces can also choose from various other colors to brighten up their smiles and show off their personalities for more fun.
- Invisalign: With Invisalign, patients are given the option to straighten their teeth discreetly since they are made to be practically invisible. In other words, Invisalign aligner trays are made up of BPA-free plastic, and they can subtly and gradually move your teeth over time. Because Invisalign trays and the plastic it is made of are smooth and comfortable, wearing your trays is an overall easy process. In addition, the orthodontist will take a 3D image of your teeth to create your Invisalign rather than using a mold that is traditionally used with braces.
Benefits of Metal Braces
Metal braces are glued to your enamel, so they will stay in place until they are meant to be taken off. This quality is especially good for those who are often worried about losing their trays or prefer not to change their trays out periodically.
Because patients cannot take off their metal braces, the treatment time is often much quicker than Invisalign, depending on the patient’s needs. Typically, metal braces stay on for about two years since they are worn 24/7. This is also an excellent option for patients who might not have the best self-discipline and cannot be responsible enough to stay on top of their Invisalign routine.
When cleaning your metal braces, you only have to make sure that you regularly brush and floss in the same way as you would do without them.
Depending on your needs and other various factors, metal braces will range from about $1,800 to $5,500 from patient to patient.
Once the treatment has been completed and your metal braces are taken off, you usually will be instructed to wear a retainer every night to keep your new straightened teeth in their place.
Those who have more complex dental issues will more than likely benefit from metal braces rather than Invisalign, as it is usually more effective in treating more crooked out-of-line teeth.
Benefits of Invisalign
One of the most significant benefits of Invisalign is that it can be removed whenever the patient would like. This allows you to eat and drink without getting food stuck in your traditional braces.
One of the apparent benefits of Invisalign and the most common reasons to choose Invisalign is that they are clear. This is extremely popular for adults who would like to straighten their teeth because they do not have to worry about changing their appearance drastically with metal braces. With Invisalign, most people do not even notice that you are wearing them.
Because Invisalign is made up of smooth plastic material, they are usually much more comfortable than metal braces. Metal braces have brackets that often create sores in the patient’s mouth, and with Invisalign, you can avoid this entirely.
- Treatment Time
Depending on the patient’s needs and dental issues, Invisalign is typically worn for about 6 to 18 months for 22 to 24 hours a day.
Invisalign typically costs about $5,000 for the treatment.
After you eat or drink anything besides water, you should clean your Invisalign trays with an Invisalign cleaning system or by simply brushing and rinsing them with lukewarm water. This should also be done every morning and night throughout the dental treatment.
What are the downsides of metal braces and Invisalign?
- Metal braces: Those who play contact sports should probably opt for Invisalign since metal braces can potentially damage any tissue during trauma.
- Invisalign: Those who have back tooth bite issues, bridgework, premolars, or the need to rotate canines should probably opt for metal braces since this treatment will not be suited for Invisalign.
Overall, the decision between getting metal braces or Invisalign comes down to the patient and their unique needs. It is important to weigh the pros and cons of each option so that you can ensure your teeth and your overall dental health get the best treatment possible.
North County Dental Care brings together a host of dental specialists to provide a full spectrum of dental care for you and your family, all in one convenient location. Our family dentistry office in Vista, California, does not require referrals or running from one specialist’s office to another to receive the care you need. Best of all, we treat patients of all ages so that you can schedule your entire family’s dental appointments all in one place.