When you walk into a room and introduce yourself in professional and social settings, one of the first things people notice is your smile. This is why people often want to fix misaligned teeth as quickly and efficiently as possible.
In the past, metal braces were the go-to solution for crooked teeth. However, new dental technologies have made it possible for you to straighten your teeth in a way that is more discreet and comfortable. Many dental patients are turning to Invisalign to get the smile they’ve always wanted.
What are the differences between conventional braces and Invisalign? Comparing the two teeth-straightening treatments can help you decide which is the right choice for you.
What Are Braces?
Braces are not removable once they are applied. The braces are usually made of metal and were created more for function than style. This is why some patients decide to change the color of their bands, since it makes the look of braces more interesting. Metal braces can fix complex issues with the teeth and work quickly to close gaps than Invisalign.
Every patient’s treatment time will differ, but the average time patients are expected to wear braces is anywhere from 18 months to 3 years. However, you’ll likely notice that your misaligned teeth are moving into place in just a few months. Seeing that your smile is improving can do wonders for your self-confidence.
It’s important to practice good oral hygiene and maintain braces properly. Caring for braces can be a little more complicated than Invisalign care. The wires and brackets that come with braces can make oral hygiene challenging. Be sure to brush and floss after meals to keep your teeth healthy. When you have traditional braces, there are certain foods you’ll have to avoid, such as gum, popcorn and applies. Other chewy foods should also be avoided until you have your braces removed.
It takes about an hour for braces to be installed. Patients will also have to visit the orthodontist every month or two. During these follow-up appointments, the orthodontist will change the bands attached to the brackets as well as the wires. You’ll likely experience some soreness after band and wire adjustments, but this should subside in a day or two. It’s important not to miss the follow-up appointments to ensure that the braces are working as quickly and effectively as possible.
What Is Invisalign?
Invisalign is designed to be discreet. You’ll receive a series of clear aligner trays made from medical-grade plastic. The aligners are designed to fit over your teeth. your orthodontist will use pictures, impressions and X-rays to create an accurate 3D image of your teeth that are used to customize aligners.
Invisalign is ideal for patients who don’t want their braces to be obvious. Adults in professional settings and older teenagers who have a certain aesthetic they want to maintain may choose Invisalign.
The aligners must be changed every week or two. Each set of aligners fits more snugly on the teeth to gently position your teeth into place. Once you’re ready to remove the last set of aligners, your smile should be restored.
While you can easily remove the aligners, it’s best to leave the aligners in your mouth for about 22 hours a day. You should take the aligners out of your mouth when you eat, but you won’t have to restrict your diet like you would with conventional braces. You should also limit your intake of wine and coffee, since these can stain the teeth, especially when you drink these beverages and put the aligners back on without brushing or rinsing your mouth.
Depending on the condition of your teeth and your dental needs, you may wear Invisalign for about six months, or you may wear the aligners for up to 18 months. After your treatment, you may need a permanent retainer or night gear that will help you keep your teeth straightened. Your orthodontist may also recommend teeth whitening after Invisalign. If you want to whiten your teeth, it’s best to do it when you’re no longer wearing aligners so the whitening solution can be applied evenly to your teeth.
Invisalign vs Traditional Braces
Both braces and Invisalign were created to straighten the teeth over time while giving you a better smile and improved oral health. Conventional braces have been around for years and have a reputation for effective treatment. Invisalign is a newer option for straightening the teeth and has been popular with patients for the last 15 years.
Traditional braces are made from metal brackets that are attached to the teeth and tied together with wires and small rubber bands. With the development of modern orthodontics, there are brackets that are designed to match a patient’s enamel color. You can also get the brackets in different colors to make your braces stand out.
Whether you get traditional braces or Invisalign, it’s vital to keep your teeth clean and do all you can to reduce plaque and tartar buildup on the teeth. This keeps you from developing stubborn stains on the teeth. Invisalign is often a more suitable option these days since you can control when to take the aligners out and you’ll experience less pain and discomfort. While you will have to schedule follow-up appointments so the orthodontist can track your progress, the appointments are not as frequent as with conventional braces. You also won’t have to worry as much about things you can’t eat, which means you can maintain a balanced diet.
If you are in Dublin Ohio, then consider a virtual consult from Align Beauty Orthodontics, serving Dublin county and surrounding areas. The friendly and professional team will explain the Invisalign process and determine if you’re a candidate for this innovative teeth-straightening treatment. You’ll likely notice a boost in your self confidence once you see the progress of Invisalign, and after your treatment is complete. Board certified orthodontist Dr. Gu can also provide you with information for maintaining your smile once you’ve finished wearing your Invisalign aligners or metal braces.