If you are trying to decide between Invisalign and braces, what factors will your orthodontist recommend you consider? Dr. Morrow can provide some insight into how we assist patients in making these important decisions.
Invisalign vs. Braces
If you need orthodontic treatment, you may be faced with a difficult decision between braces and Invisalign clear aligners. Both options have their pros and cons, and the best choice for you will depend on your specific needs and orthodontic problem. Our orthodontists can help you understand the factors to consider when making this decision and answer any questions you may have.
Braces are traditionally made of metal and attached to the front of the teeth. However, there have been many advances in braces technology and treatment methods in recent years, including the availability of translucent (ceramic) and coloured braces. Braces work by using rubber bands and metal wires to apply pressure to your teeth, gradually shifting them into their prescribed positions to correct orthodontic issues.
Invisalign, on the other hand, uses custom-made clear plastic aligners to move teeth in small increments until they are in the correct position. The orthodontist will take a 3D scan of your mouth to ensure that the aligners fit your teeth precisely.
Can you choose between braces & Invisalign?
Your ability to choose between braces and Invisalign will depend on the specific orthodontic issues identified by your orthodontist during your initial assessment. In some cases, Invisalign may not be the best option for patients with more severe orthodontic issues, so it is important to seek advice from your orthodontist based on your specific situation.
Is Invisalign better than braces?
As you consider your options, you may be wondering which one is better: Invisalign or braces? It’s important to keep in mind that the best choice can vary from person to person, depending on your specific circumstances and needs. To determine the right fit for you, you and your orthodontist should consider the pros and cons of Invisalign versus braces and how they align or conflict with your orthodontic needs and concerns, such as the length of treatment, aesthetic factors, and more.
Advantages of Invisalign
You can take your clear aligners out to eat, drink and play sports.
You may be wondering if you have to wear your Invisalign aligners all the time. While it is recommended to wear the aligners for 22 hours per day for optimal results, you can remove them for two hours each day for meals and activities. This allows you to eat your favourite foods, drink non-water beverages, and participate in sports or musical activities without worrying about damaging the aligners. This is not possible with braces, which are fixed and may require dietary restrictions.
Clear aligners are transparent.
One of the advantages of Invisalign for many patients is its discreet appearance. The aligners are virtually invisible, making them a good choice for self-conscious teens and adults who want to avoid noticeable metal brackets and wires. With Invisalign, you can go about your daily activities, including work and socializing, without feeling self-conscious about your orthodontic treatment.
You’ll be able to continue brushing and flossing normally.
Invisalign clear aligners do not have metal wires and brackets, making it easier to floss and brush your teeth. To clean the aligners, soak them in a cleaning solution (do not brush them as it can cause scratching or damage) and brush and floss your teeth as you normally would, making sure to remove all food particles and debris that can lead to plaque. Good oral hygiene is important for success with any orthodontic treatment, so make sure to maintain a strong routine at home.
You might spend less time in your orthodontist’s chair overall.
Many patients are concerned about the comfort of different orthodontic treatment options and may wonder “Which is more painful: braces or Invisalign?” While both options may cause some discomfort, Invisalign does not have metal brackets and wires that can irritate the inside of your cheeks. As a result, you may have a lower risk of experiencing pain or sensitivity due to rubbing wires.
Disadvantages of Invisalign
There are a few potential disadvantages to Invisalign that patients may want to consider, depending on their lifestyle, self-discipline, and budget. These factors may include:.
You’ll need to consider Invisalign’s effectiveness vs. braces to treat your problem.
It is not always recommended that patients with more complex orthodontic cases choose Invisalign. If you are considering Invisalign, it is important to ask your orthodontist if you can expect the same results as with another treatment method. This will help you make an informed decision on which type of orthodontic treatment is right for you.
You’ll need to be disciplined.
Compliance with your treatment plan is important for your success. With Invisalign, it is essential to track the time the aligners are out of your mouth for any reason, as they need to be worn for 22 hours every day. Be sure to put the aligners back in after brushing, flossing, eating, or participating in sports. If you do not follow the treatment plan as prescribed, you may not achieve your intended results within the specified period, and your treatment plan may need to be revised.
It can be inconvenient to remove and place your clear aligners back in your mouth.
If you eat or drink frequently in public or travel frequently, you may find it challenging to remove and replace your Invisalign aligners discreetly without losing them. It is important to remember to remove the aligners before eating or drinking anything other than water, and to brush your teeth before replacing the aligners to prevent food particles from building up and affecting the effectiveness of your treatment. If you do not maintain good oral hygiene, your aligners may become stained, and you may be at a higher risk of cavities and bad breath. It is a good idea to carry a carrying case to keep your aligners clean and safe while they are not in your mouth.
You’ll need to take costs and finances into account.
The cost of Invisalign treatment may be similar to or slightly higher than the cost of braces, depending on the nature of the orthodontic problem, the duration of treatment, and other factors. In some cases, Invisalign may not be sufficient to fully correct an orthodontic issue, and the orthodontist may recommend using braces to finalize tooth positions, which could increase the overall cost of treatment. It is important to discuss the cost of treatment with your orthodontist and understand any potential additional expenses that may be involved.
You may need attachments.
In some cases, attachments may be needed to help the Invisalign aligners grip the teeth and move them into the prescribed positions. These attachments, which are similar to buttons and mimic the colour of teeth, may be necessary for some patients, but not for others. While they are designed to be discreet, they may make it appear as though you are wearing clear braces rather than clear aligners. The number and placement of attachments will depend on your specific orthodontic needs.
Advantages of Braces
They are a versatile treatment option.
Braces are a powerful treatment option for correcting a wide range of orthodontic issues, including both simple and complex problems related to both the teeth and facial structure. They use brackets, anchors, and wires to move teeth into the desired position and can offer more precise results in potentially less time. Your orthodontist may recommend braces if they believe they can provide more accurate results or if more force is needed to move the teeth into the correct positions. However, there may be limitations to the amount of tooth movement that can be achieved with Invisalign, depending on the specifics of your orthodontic case. It is important to discuss your treatment goals and needs with your orthodontist to determine the best treatment option for you.
You’ll have multiple types of braces to choose from.
If you are interested in making your braces less noticeable, our orthodontists offer ceramic (translucent) braces that are made of tooth-coloured ceramic material rather than metallic grey or silver. This allows them to blend in with your teeth and be less noticeable. If aesthetics are a concern for you, even if you do need braces, we may have a solution to help you achieve a more pleasing appearance. It is important to discuss your concerns about the appearance of your braces with your orthodontist to determine the best treatment option for you.
The duration of your treatment may be shorter with braces.
If you are looking to correct misalignment and close gaps between your teeth, the duration of treatment may be shorter with braces compared to Invisalign for some patients. This may be an important factor to consider if you are hoping to complete your orthodontic treatment as quickly as possible. It is important to ask your orthodontist if there will be a significant difference in the duration of treatment between the two options for your specific case. They will be able to provide you with more information about how long each treatment option is likely to take and help you make an informed decision about which one is best for you.
Disadvantages of Braces
You may be less than enthusiastic about the appearance of braces.
If you have traditional metal braces, you may feel self-conscious about their appearance in certain settings, such as at work or in social situations. Metal or coloured braces can be more noticeable on teeth and may cause some people to feel self-conscious about their appearance. If this is a concern for you, it is important to discuss your concerns with your orthodontist to determine if there are alternative treatment options that may better meet your needs and preferences.
You may find brushing your teeth challenging.
If you have braces, it will take a little more time and effort to brush and floss your teeth properly. This is because braces are fixed to your teeth and cannot be removed, so you need to navigate around the brackets and wires when cleaning your teeth. If your teeth are not cleaned properly during treatment, plaque can accumulate around the braces, which can lead to tooth decay and staining that may remain even after the braces are removed. To ensure that your teeth are properly cared for during treatment, it is important to follow your orthodontist’s instructions on how to brush and floss with braces. They may also demonstrate the proper technique to you to help ensure that you are cleaning your teeth effectively.
You’ll need to take extra care choosing food.
With braces, it is important to be mindful of what you eat and drink. Hard, sticky foods such as taffy and certain vegetables like carrots should be avoided, as they can damage the braces. Carbonated and acidic beverages should also be avoided, as they can contribute to tooth decay and harm the braces. If you experience any issues with your braces, such as food getting stuck in the archwire or a bracket breaking or dislodging from your tooth, you should visit your orthodontist as soon as possible to have the issue repaired. Multiple issues with your braces may prolong your treatment time. It is important to follow your orthodontist’s instructions on what to eat and drink while you are in treatment to help ensure that your treatment goes as smoothly as possible.
You’ll need to see your orthodontist for regular visits.
With Invisalign, you will typically need to visit your orthodontist every 8 weeks or so to check on your treatment progress, while with braces, you will usually need to visit your orthodontist every 4-6 weeks for adjustments and to assess if any changes need to be made to your treatment plan. During these visits, your orthodontist will check that your teeth are moving as expected and make any necessary adjustments to your orthodontic appliances. It is important to attend these appointments as scheduled to ensure that your treatment stays on track and that your teeth are moving properly.
How will I make the right decisions about my orthodontic treatment?
If you’re considering orthodontic treatment, you may be feeling a bit overwhelmed by the options available to you. It’s important to consider all the factors that might affect your decision, such as your specific orthodontic needs, your personal preferences, and your budget. Our team at York Mills Orthodontics is here to help you navigate these choices and provide recommendations based on your circumstances. We’ll be with you every step of the way, answering your questions and addressing your concerns to help you make informed decisions about your oral health.
Are you interested in orthodontic treatment? We work with families and individuals all over the North York community. Contact York Mills Orthodontics today to schedule a consultation with our experienced team. We can assess your specific needs and help you determine which treatment option is best for you based on your circumstances.