Did you know, that the simple act of smiling more can make you happy? Getting your teeth straightened can give you the self-esteem boost you need to grin all day long.
However, you’ll want to do some research into orthodontist specialties. These days, orthodontists can create a detailed digital model of your teeth and jaw alignment and recommend treatment based on their data. Choosing between braces or Invisalign could mean the difference between a treatment that’s properly customized for you and one that’s not.
So, how do braces vs Invisalign compare? How long do they take to work, how do they compare in cost, and why get one over the other? Read on to have your questions answered.
Braces vs Invisalign: A Breakdown
What are braces, and what is Invisalign? They both straighten teeth, but their suitability changes depending on your personal needs. If you want to fix crooked teeth, your best bet is to consult with a qualified orthodontist in your area.
All About Braces
Traditional braces come in the form of metallic brackets and wires that are bonded onto the surface of your teeth. They provide a lot of force to move your teeth into the correct position. Over time, your orthodontist will tighten the wires, making your teeth straighter and straighter.
If you are having bite problems like malocclusion, your provider may ask you to wear elastic bands to force your jaw to rest in the correct position.
If your teeth are really crooked, you’ll want to go with braces. Orthodontists have greater control over the final result with traditional braces thanks to the customizability options (elastics, bonded braces, etc).
If you have a couple of teeth that keep shifting no matter what, dentists can install bonded retainers on the back of your teeth. These are permanent retainers that keep your teeth in line for the rest of your life.
How Long Do Braces Take to Work
How long do braces take to work? This all depends on the severity of your misaligned teeth.
The average amount of time for treatment with braces for an adult is 2 years. If you only need a small adjustment to your teeth, you can get away with treatment for a year. This can extend to up to three years to straighten teeth in patients that have severely crooked teeth.
All About Invisalign
Invisalign is a brand of clear aligners for teeth molded from plastic. These are meant to be worn full-time over your entire set of teeth to shift the teeth into the correct position over time.
They are less visually intrusive than braces, and many patients prefer them for that reason. However, this treatment is not well-suited for patients that have serious orthodontic issues. For example, if you have large gaps between your teeth, you may need the force of traditional braces to pull them closer together.
Adults that are looking for a more comfortable, adaptable, and less visually disturbing treatment option may consider Invisalign.
How does the Invisalign procedure work?
Your cosmetic dentist or orthodontist will first take X-rays and a 3D mold of your teeth and then model custom-fitting aligners based on a comprehensive survey of your teeth and jaw. If you need more movement than the aligner can provide, attachments can be grafted on to assist tooth movement.
For Invisalign, patients do not need to make bi-weekly visits to the orthodontist as they do for traditional braces tightening. However, Invisalign is a bit tricky since it relies on patient compliance. If you do get Invisalign, make sure to wear the aligners as advised!
We find that patients often complete a course of Invisalign faster than braces; the treatment can take as little as six months! This may be because patients seeking Invisalign are dealing with issues of a smaller magnitude.
Best Option for Fixing Crooked Teeth
If you are dealing with extreme teeth alignment issues, you may want to explore traditional braces to help forcibly move your teeth. If you are seeking cosmetic adjustments to your teeth or you have less serious alignment issues, then Invisalign is a great and less intrusive option.
When deciding between braces vs Invisalign, it’s all about your individual situation, your budget, and your lifestyle.
For more advice, check out our lifestyle section!