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Anderson Atkins DDS Blog

21Feb

Which is Better: Braces or Invisalign?

There isn’t a clear-cut answer to the question many people have asked us: “Which is better, braces or Invisalign?” In most cases, either choice is a great option for achieving a straighter smile. However, straight teeth are more than just a cosmetic aim, it’s imperative to a mouth that functions correctly. We’re here to educate you on the advantages and disadvantages of both options, so that you can confidently decide if braces or Invisalign is best for you.

The Advantages of Braces

Traditional braces are metal brackets that are attached to your teeth. Rubber bands and metal wires are also used to move your teeth into their ideal position. Below are the top three advantages to braces.

  1. More Power

    The use of metal brackets and wires is the strongest way to effectively pull your teeth into correct alignment, even for those with difficult cases. Because braces are so powerful, you can correct multiple dental issues with a single treatment. 
  2. Faster Treatment

    Most people want to finish orthodontic work as quickly as possible. Braces tend to close gaps and align teeth faster than Invisalign. ​​​​​​​
  3. More Options

    If you’re concerned about the visibility of traditional braces, don’t be! You now have more options to keep your orthodontic work hidden. Lingual (behind the teeth) and ceramic braces can give you the power and speed of braces without the cold metal. ​​​​​​​

The Disadvantages of Braces

While traditional braces are strong and effective, there are some drawbacks.

  1. Inconvenient Brushing

    With braces, brushing and flossing can be challenging. If you don’t clean your teeth properly, plaque can build up around the brackets and lead to staining and decay. ​​​​​​​
  2. Food Limitations

    There are certain foods that you will be unable to eat while wearing braces. Hard, sticky foods and candies can cause a bracket to break. Every time a bracket breaks, treatment is prolonged. ​​​​​​​
  3. Regular Consultations

    Every month, you’ll need to schedule a visit to the orthodontist to have your braces adjusted and make sure your teeth are moving in the right direction.​​​​​​​

The Advantages of Invisalign

Invisalign is a virtually invisible aligner that moves your teeth the way traditional braces do. There are many pros to this customizable dental treatment. 

  1. Aligners are Removable

    Invisalign needs to be worn 20-22 hours a day, so you can take them out to eat. This means you don’t have to change your diet during treatment. ​​​​​​​
  2. Comfortable and Invisible

    Many people appreciate the fact that the plastic aligners are unnoticeable. They are also comfortable to wear and do not cut the inside of your mouth the way traditional metal braces do. ​​​​​​​
  3. Easier to Brush

    Because you can remove Invisalign for a short time, you can take out the aligners every time you brush and floss your teeth. ​​​​​​​
  4. Fewer Consultations 

    Before you receive your first set of aligners, 3D scans of your teeth are used to customize every set of retainers. You will not need to see an orthodontist as frequently as you do with braces. Instead, you’ll follow instructions and change your aligners over a period of time and watch as your teeth adjust.​​​​​​​

The Disadvantages of Invisalign

While Invisalign tends to be a favorite option compared to braces, there are several disadvantages that you’ll want to consider. 

  1. You Must Be Disciplined

    If you are not a disciplined person, there is a huge disadvantage to Invisalign. You are responsible for wearing the aligners for 22 hours every day. If you forget to put them in after brushing your teeth or choose to take them out for a long time, you will prolong your treatment process or prevent the proper tooth alignment. ​​​​​​​
  2. Potential Inconvenience

    ​​​​​​​While some people see the ability to take their retainers out as a pro, it can be inconvenient. If you are out at a restaurant or grab a cup of coffee in the breakroom, you’ll need to discreetly remove the aligners. It is also necessary to brush your teeth before putting the retainers back in. Food particles can prevent movement, or cause plaque buildup and cavities.
  3. Cost

    Just like braces, the cost of Invisalign depends on the severity of your case. Invisalign can cost between $5,000 and $8,000. The cost of braces can be anywhere from $2,500 to $6,000. Talk to your insurance company to determine if Invisalign is covered.

There are many pros and cons to both braces and Invisalign and our team of dentists can help you make the decision that will give you the smile you’ve been waiting for. Contact us today for a free Invisalign consultation.  

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