Straighten your Smile: Invisalign vs. Braces
There are many reasons to want a straighter smile, and the benefits of orthodontic dentistry reach far beyond simply improving the aesthetic quality of your smile. When tooth crowding, excessive spacing, overbite, or underbite are corrected, the overall health and function of your teeth and gums also improves. Today’s orthodontics offer more options to realign and straighten your teeth than ever before, and we’re going to tell you about them!
What is Invisalign?
Invisalign is a modern, digitally fabricated orthodontic solution, ideal for adults and teens who don’t want braces to correct their smiles. The treatment uses a series of removable molds or invisible trays that fit over the teeth to adjust their positions gradually over the course of 6 – 18 months. Think of a retainer or a custom mouthguard, but slimmer, more comfortable, and less obvious when worn. Invisible aligner trays are made of a specialized plastic material developed specifically for Invisalign treatments which is free of gluten, latex, BPA, and BPS. A set of 18-30 trays is produced based on digital images and impressions of your mouth. Each tray is worn for approximately two weeks and replaced with the next one in the sequence until your orthodontic treatment is complete. Each mouth is different, and each set of invisible aligners is custom-designed according to a unique movement plan for that patient.
What are the benefits of Invisalign over traditional braces?
- Uses digital technology and is much faster
- Requires fewer visits to the dentist
- Easier to clean and maintain
- Less visible than traditional braces
- More comfortable
- Completely removable
- Reduces damage caused by grinding or clenching teeth
While Invisalign is the best option for many orthodontic patients, it is not without limitations. Invisalign may not be suitable for:
- complex orthodontic treatment or major tooth movement.
- patients with teeth that are very short, round or pegged as this prevents aligner trays from fitting with a tight enough grip.
- patients with overcrowding or teeth that are rotated more than 20 degrees beyond the correct position.
- patients wishing to close any gaps larger than 6mm.
- correcting a severe or skeletal overbite or underbite.
- patients with previous dental work that prevents aligner trays from fitting.
4 Types of Braces
If invisible aligners aren’t right for your specific situation, there are still plenty of options for you to achieve a straighter smile.
1. Traditional metal braces use brackets and wires with rubber bands that are cemented to the teeth in such a way that pulls them gradually into better alignment over the course of 2 – 3 years. It’s no surprise that this has been the most common method to straighten teeth until recently—it works, even for the most crooked smiles. They are more durable than their ceramic counterparts, but also much more noticeable, which is a deterrent for some people who may feel self-conscious while eating, smiling, laughing or talking with metal braces. Despite their visibility, metal braces are the most effective treatment for the broadest range of misalignment problems.
2. Ceramic braces are very similar to the traditional metal braces in size and shape, but they are constructed of a ceramic material that blends into the natural color of the teeth so that the braces are less noticeable. Ceramic braces work in the same way as metal ones and they are equally effective. While the cost is slightly higher,they are significantly less noticeable than their metal counterparts and thus a more appealing alternative. They are not as durable as metal braces, so they may not be the best option for people who play sports or other high impact activities.
3. Lingual braces are similar to traditional metal braces but they are attached to the insides of the teeth rather than the outside. This makes them much more difficult to keep clean and can sometimes be uncomfortable next to the tongue. They are much more subtle than braces worn on the outsides of the teeth, but they may not be as effective or as fast. As with any tooth straightening option, they aren’t suitable for everyone, but offer an excellent alternative to traditional braces for people with specific types of misalignment.
4. Self-ligating braces also use the bracket and wire system, but the brackets have clips that hold the wire rather than using rubber bands like traditional metal or ceramic braces. Patients often find these braces easier to clean and less uncomfortable than traditional metal or ceramic braces, which may also reduce the number of orthodontic visits you’ll have to make. While they come in both metal and ceramic options, sometimes this type of braces can be limiting and may not provide all of the features required for a successful orthodontic treatment. As such, they aren’t right for everyone.
Straighten your Smile with Invisalign at NEESH Dental
Orthodontic treatment involves the correction of misaligned teeth and jaws to improve their health, functionality, or appearance. Misalignment of the teeth and jaw is very common and is completely correctable using braces or invisible aligners. Invisible aligners are faster, more hygienic, more comfortable, more subtle, and require fewer visits to the dentist than braces. Ask your Saskatoon dentist about Invisalign at your next appointment!
At NEESH we have our patient’s best interests in mind, so if we think you would benefit from visiting an orthodontic specialist, then we can arrange for a consultation with our partner specialist for recommendations and guidance on more detailed orthodontic work. Call us to book an appointment or a virtual orthodontic consultation!