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Invisalign vs Braces

The new vs the traditional 

Invisalign is a relatively new treatment on the orthodontic scene, having first been used by patients in 2000. However, it has had fantastic success. Over eight million people have now used the treatment to transform their smile. 

Traditional braces have been in use for centuries, are tried and tested, and are known to be effective treatments for a range of orthodontic issues.

Both are treatments designed to straighten teeth and improve your smile and overall oral health, but which is right for you?

At a glance, they both have their advantages and disadvantages. For example:

Invisalign
Pros

  • They are designed to be invisible.
  • You can remove your aligners, which is great for when you eat and drink for more comfort and prevent food from becoming stuck.
  • No uncomfortable wires or brackets.


Cons

  • The aligners need to be removed before food or drink to prevent damage.
  • You need to brush after each meal to avoid staining to the aligners.

Braces
Pros

  • Most useful for more complex orthodontic treatments 
  • Fixed to teeth, so cannot be forgotten, lost or not worn
  • No extra cleaning steps other than the regular brushing and flossing 

Cons

  • May cause some pain or discomfort.
  • Can cause tooth discolouration from tooth wear and the extra difficulty in cleaning.
  • Makes it harder to eat sticky or hard foods.
  • Are noticeable and can be unsightly. 

If you're still unsure on which treatment is best for you, get in touch, as it's essential to consider every factor. 

Some may be specifically seeking out a treatment that has little impact on their day-to-day life and so require something with a more discreet look. While others may worry about how much maintenance goes into each treatment. Below is a closer look at some of these factors to help you become more informed.

Look

Invisalign
Designed to be virtually invisible, the plastic used for Invisalign aligners is transparent. Custom-made and modelled to your teeth, they straighten your teeth more discreetly and are much less unsightly than braces can be.

Braces
Traditional braces are made up of metal wires and brackets which are fixed to your teeth, all connected with small rubber bands. While you can now opt for ceramic, tooth-coloured brackets which are less noticeable, braces are always going to stand out. 

However, if the sight of braces is something you're comfortable with you can choose the colours of the rubber bands, because if they are going to be seen, why not make them suit your style?

Maintenance
 

Invisalign
As they are removable, you can easily wash the Invisalign aligners in warm water, brush them or use the Invisalign Cleaning system. 

Braces
Braces are best maintained by making sure you brush your teeth properly, paying attention to the brackets and wires when doing so. Other tools such as a water pick may be helpful to reach under wires and hard to reach areas.

Fit

Invisalign
Uniquely designed around models of your teeth, they fit tightly with minimal discomfort. The plastic aligners can be removed when needed and are replaced every two weeks as a part of the ongoing treatment plan.

Braces
Braces are fixed onto the teeth themselves, meaning they shouldn't move or become loose. A benefit of this is that you cannot forget to wear them, lose them or risk putting your treatment time back by not following the treatment plan.

Follow-up visits and treatments

Invisalign
The plastic aligners need to change every two weeks and regular check-ups every four to six weeks ensure the treatment plan is continuing smoothly.

Braces
Visits to your dentist or orthodontist every month, make sure there are no issues and allow for tightening or adjustment of braces or the treatment plan.

When looking at some of the biggest differences between Invisalign and traditional metal braces, it's important to remember that every case is unique.

Both treatments have pros and cons and are suitable for different kinds of orthodontic treatments. If you're still unsure on the best treatment for you, or if Invisalign is a viable option, get in touch. We can organise a consultation to discuss the best way to transform your smile.