Invisalign vs Braces: What’s Better?

How important is your smile to you? According to the Academy of General Dentistry, 96% of people believe that a smile is important to a person’s appearance.

For a lot of us, a beautiful smile means having straight, aligned teeth. Unfortunately, most of us don’t naturally have straight smiles, which means braces or Invisalign aligners are usually great options to consider when trying to get a smile you love.

But how do you know which option is best for you or your child? Both Invisalign and braces will straighten your teeth, but offer different unique benefits that suit the needs of different patients.

We have outlined below everything you need to know about both options to help you make your decision on whether Invisalign or traditional braces are better for you or your child.

Appearance

We’re all familiar with the appearance of traditional braces. We have come a long way from chunky train-track style braces of the past as braces continue to be designed smaller and smaller.  Clear braces are also an option now.  They have the same pieces as traditional braces except they are made of clear ceramic.  Invisalign is also popular option due to the invisibility.  Many patients prefer the inconspicuous look of Invisalign aligners. Adult and teenage patients in particular love that their peers can’t see that they are undergoing orthodontic treatment.

Functionality

Braces are worn 24/7 as you are not able to take braces off.  Thus, you must avoid hard and sticky foods so that the braces do not get damaged or come loose.  With Invisalign the aligners must be removed when eating and drinking anything besides water.  This means you don’t have to change your diet or the way you eat certain foods.

Oral Hygiene

Invisalign must be removed when you brush your teeth, meaning you will not have to alter your oral hygiene routine too much. You can continue to brush and floss as you have always done.  However, you will also have to brush and clean your Invisalign aligners.  With braces, specialized tools such as water flossers and floss threaders are helpful to remove all food and plaque from the braces.

Comfort

Straightening your teeth can cause slight discomfort as the teeth are being moved in the surrounding jaw bones.  Braces will take a few days to get used to and for the inside of your cheeks and lips to become accustom the the braces.  Invisalign will also take some getting used to.  Both treatment options will cause some soreness temporarily.  Ibuprofen, Tylenol, or Motrin can be taken to help alleviate the discomfort.

Effectiveness

Both methods are very effective treatments. Braces cannot be removed by patients and therefore are highly effective. Invisalign requires discipline from patients to ensure you wear the aligners for the recommended amount of time to ensure you get the desired effect as quickly as possible.

The Verdict

In short, it ultimately comes down to personal choice. Invisalign is a great option for those of us who want a discreet, efficient and comfortable solution to straightening teeth.  However, some people prefer braces due to the fact that you don’t have to remember to put your braces on as they are fixed in place.  If you’ve been considering straightening your smile, give us a call today to schedule a consultation to see which option would be best for you.

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