Want straighter teeth? You have two equally effective options to choose from: braces and Invisalign. But which one is best for your lifestyle?
Braces were once the only solution for fixing crooked or crowded teeth. Unfortunately, bulky braces can be painful to wear and are very noticeable. No one liked being the kid in class with braces! And as an adult, you probably want to avoid being in a professional setting with metal braces peeking out as you speak.
Now, you have an alternative to give you a straighter smile — Invisalign. Both braces and clear Invisalign aligners correct several orthodontic problems. To decide which is right for you, you’ll have to consider the severity of the orthodontic misalignment being treated, how quickly you want the issue corrected, and your budget.
Braces vs. Invisalign: A Quick Review
Your dentist will make a recommendation based on your individual orthodontic condition. Generally speaking, braces are better suited for correction of severe overcrowding, wide gaps between teeth, or a significantly misaligned jaw. To correct minor to moderate orthodontic issues, Invisalign and braces work just as well by putting pressure on the teeth to gently move them into perfect alignment. To make your choice, ask yourself the following questions:
Which Works Faster? Both demand a lengthy time commitment. Because Invisalign exerts pressure on several teeth at once, you’ll see results in 12 to 18 months. Braces, meanwhile, pressure each individual tooth into place, and that could take two years or more.
How Often Will I Need to See the Dentist? During the Invisalign treatment, you’ll receive a new aligner every two weeks after your dentist assesses your teeth’s movement. Braces require more frequent appointments to adjust the brackets.
What Foods Should I Avoid? Certain foods such as popcorn, hard candy, gum, and bagels, can damage or stick to the braces, which will require a trip to the dentist to fix them. With Invisalign, you can eat anything you want as long as you take the aligner out of your mouth and brush after every meal and snack. To maximize results, you should wear the aligner a minimum of 22 hours a day. Some people — especially children — may find it easier to keep the braces in and not have to deal with putting the aligners in and taking them out frequently during the day.
Which Costs More? Braces and Invisalign can be costly. Your price will depend on several factors, including the severity of the orthodontic issue and your geographic location. Your insurance company may cover part of the cost, so check with your carrier before making a decision.
Which is Less Noticeable? Invisalign is the clear (pun intended!) winner. Made of clear plastic, Invisalign plates are virtually undetectable when you smile. Traditional metal braces are admittedly more visible. However, you have options other than metal to choose from, such as ceramic and lingual (behind the teeth) braces.
Which is More Comfortable? With Invisalign, you may experience some discomfort as the aligner repositions the teeth. Otherwise, you won’t feel anything. Braces can dig into gums and cause pain. But remember that to severe orthodontic conditions, braces may be worth the slight discomfort.
Straightening your teeth is not just for cosmetic purposes. Having perfectly aligned teeth helps prevent tooth decay and gum disease. You’ll also feel less pain when you chew. Both Invisalign and braces can give you a perfect smile. The decision is yours!
Get the Smile of Your Dreams
Schedule an appointment at Espire’s Colorado Springs location today! Our highly trained dentists can help you decide whether you need braces or Invisalign and guide you through your orthodontic journey from start to finish. Don’t live near our Colorado Springs office? Find one of our other locations near you.
8610 Explorer Drive #315
Colorado Springs, CO 80920