Are you unsure about whether to choose clear aligners or traditional braces to address your orthodontic issues? Here, our Mississauga dentists offer some factors to think about, including cosmetic considerations.
Choosing Between Clear Aligners & Braces
Clear aligners such as Invisalign vs. braces: a tough choice! Luckily, we can help you out. Here are some facts to consider about each option while you think about which one to choose to help you achieve a straight smile.
Transparent clear aligners such as Invisalign are custom-made to fit your smile. These removable orthodontic appliances are constructed from clear plastic material. They forgo the brackets and wires that accompany braces and are therefore lower profile in appearance.
You will receive an individually customized treatment plan to help you achieve your smile goals. You will generally spend less time in your dentist's office during clear aligners treatment than when undergoing treatment with braces, since your clear aligners won't require routine adjustments like braces do. Your dentist will schedule brief appointments with you every 4 to 6 weeks and will review your progress and general oral health with you.
Depending on your specific treatment plan, they may be in line with the cost of braces or slightly more expensive. A casual observer will be hard-pressed to see them on your teeth, and you won't have any restrictions on the food and drinks you can enjoy.
However, clear aligners must be worn for 22 hours each day and removed while drinking and eating anything except water. Commitment to treatment, self-discipline and scheduling meals to fit within the 2 hours allotted for meal times every day.
Traditional Metal Braces
These are the most common kind of braces used to treat orthodontic issues. Made entirely from metal and supported by elastics, metal braces have been refined over time thanks to advancements in orthodontic technology.
Over time, braces apply continuous pressure to your teeth, slowly shifting them into their new, corrected positions. As this pressure is applied and the teeth move, the bone changes shape to accommodate their new positions.
Today, brackets are more streamlined than those used in years past. Now, you will run less of a risk of the inside of your cheeks or lips getting irritated by a bracket since brackets have become smaller and more comfortable over time. However, some people are still reluctant choose metal braces because of their appearance.
In this case, clear braces may be a viable alternative.
Many patients choose clear braces as they are better able to blend in with their smile. They are not actually transparent; the brackets are constructed from tooth-coloured ceramic.
Clear braces come with a caveat, though. While they are a compromise between metal braces and clear aligners when it comes to how they look, they are actually larger and more brittle than traditional metal braces.
They also tend to be more costly. Therefore, they are commonly used only on upper front (your most visible) teeth to save on costs.
Keep in mind that your gums may feel sensitive with these, as the larger ceramic brackets can make it more challenging to clean around the brackets, leading to receding or swollen gums should your toothbrush not reach the gum line and enamel.