Anyone who has worn traditional braces understands the discomfort that can go with wearing them. And while their effectiveness at straightening crooked teeth cannot be disputed, there are a number of disadvantages to wearing them. Clear aligners, which are sold under brands like Invisalign, aim to circumnavigate these disadvantages while straightening your teeth. Let’s take a look at a comparison between Invisalign vs braces so you can make an informed decision for your long term orthodontic health.
Invisalign Vs Braces: Which Is More Comfortable?
Traditional braces are made up of a system of brackets and wires. These are made out of metal and can cause general irritation and tenderness, especially when they have been tightened or if you bump your mouth.
Metal braces are effective because of the force they exert on your teeth, so every time your teeth shift closer to their ultimate positions, your braces need to be adjusted to maintain that system of pressure. Patients who wear traditional braces cannot remove them until the end of your treatment plan. This can be restrictive, and many patients feel as though their treatment plan may never come to an end.
Invisalign has created a more comfortable solution that is made out of a special type of plastic. The aligner is fitted over the front of your teeth and causes much less discomfort. While it may take a while to get used to them, they are not considered to be as uncomfortable as metal braces.
Significantly, if you have clear aligners, you will need to remove them before eating and drinking. While this serves a purpose (i.e. so you don’t stain them or cause them to change shape), it also offers the wearer some degree of relief twice a day. You must wear your aligners for at least 22 hours a day in order for you to meet your treatment goals and you must wear them while you sleep at night, but you should remove them for eating and drinking.
Invisalign Vs Braces: Which Is Easier To Clean?
Patients who wear traditional braces need to be very diligent about oral hygiene because if your orthodontics are not cleaned properly and debris gets stuck in the orthodontics it can lead to tooth decay. Brushing and flossing around metal braces is challenging because the braces are actually in your way. Not only do you need to clean your braces carefully, but you must also make sure that you clean your tooth surfaces.
Patients who wear metal braces may find introducing an electric toothbrush or water flosser more helpful to their oral hygiene routine.
Patients who wear clear aligners may have an easier time with dental hygiene. This is because the aligner needs to be removed to be cleaned, making it easier to see and handle. It also means that your teeth are easier to brush too; your movements are not impeded by any orthodontics as you have removed them.
Invisalign wearers do need to pay special attention to cleaning too. It’s important that you don’t use hot water or abrasive soaps to clean them, as this can cause damage or make the plastic surface shinier and more noticeable. You must brush your teeth after every meal and before you put your aligners back in, in order to avoid problems with dental decay. This makes clear aligners generally better suited to more mature patients who have established good dental hygiene routines.
Braces Vs Invisalign: Which Is Best For Self Confidence?
For many patients having orthodontic treatment may seem like a shift from feeling less confident about their smile to feeling less confident about showing their braces. If you are on a longer treatment plan this can feel like an eternity.
When you wear clear aligners, they are not completely invisible but the people around you will hardly notice them. In fact, most people need to be really close to be able to see them. Self-confidence doesn’t only affect young people; there are plenty of adults considering but delaying orthodontic treatment because they feel self-conscious about wearing braces. Wearing clear aligners is a discreet way to straighten crooked teeth.
Invisalign Vs Braces: Which Is Better?
There is no objective, one-size-fits-all answer to this question. The type of orthodontic treatment best for you is a matter that needs to be discussed with your dental practitioner and in light of your personal circumstances. When weighing up the matter of braces vs Invisalign, your dentist will consider factors such as
- Your age
- Your dental hygiene habits
- The extent of your straightening needs
- Your budget
Both orthodontic braces and clear aligners have their place when it comes to teeth straightening. Invisalign is most effective at correcting mild to moderately crooked teeth and bite issues, while metal braces are generally best suited for severe issues. Certainly, clear aligners require less maintenance from your dental practitioner, as you will swap them out for new sets rather than go for adjustments but you do need to be self-disciplined in order to get the full value from wearing them.
The debate surrounding Invisalign vs braces is a complex and highly personalised matter and the most appropriate way to get an answer is to consult with your dentist. Please contact us for an appointment:
Phone: (02) 9158 6213
Pyrmont NSW 2009
Phone: (02) 9158 6756
Illawong, NSW 2234
Phone: (02) 9159 6083
Sylvania Waters NSW 2224