Invisalign vs Braces: Which Is Better For Teeth Treatment?
Providing the orthodontic care and attention
we would want for our own family and friends.
Both Invisalign and braces are popular options to correct crooked teeth.
But which one is the best?
Keep reading to find out which of these two options is best for your teeth and your budget.
Advantages of Braces
Can be Used in the Most Extreme Cases
Braces are sturdy and can correct severely crooked teeth, overbites, and more. Most importantly, braces, unlike aligners, do not rely on patient compliance.
Variety of options including less visible
There are different types of braces, including traditional metal braces, white ceramic braces that are more visually appealing, and lingual braces that are fitted to the back of your teeth instead of the front. This makes it much easier for you and your orthodontist to find a teeth correction option that works best for you.
Braces are equipped to handle the most severe orthodontic cases, but for the results to be long-lasting, you will need to continue wearing your retainer once the braces are removed. Be advised that it is advised to wear retainers overnight indefinitely, regardless of whether you choose braces or Invisalign.
Because braces cannot be removed by the patient, the force levels are continuous on teeth, meaning predictable and time efficient results.
Braces can be cheaper in some situations for several reasons. The lab fees and manufacturing material costs to create your clear aligners will be higher than braces. This of course, depends on the situation because prices can be comparable and very similar in some cases.
Stain and Heat-Resistant
Unlike the softer materials used in Invisalign and other clear aligners, metal and ceramic braces are heat and stain-resistant.
Disadvantages of Braces
Braces are known for causing gum irritation, discomfort, and pain at the beginning of treatment. While the discomfort decreases as your teeth become properly aligned, some people may find Invisalign to be a more tolerable option.
Children and teenagers can get away with wearing braces more easily than working adults.
Some people don’t like the idea of wearing braces while addressing their team at the monthly staff meeting.
The stigma around wearing braces has worn off in most circles, but if you are concerned about what your peers may think, Invisalign or lingual braces will be your best option.
Changes in Eating and Hygiene Habits
Braces restrict what you are allowed to eat. You will also be giving up your favourite sticky and hard lollies until the braces are removed.
More Office Visits
Along with an intense dental hygiene regime, you will be making regular trips to your orthodontist for tightening and adjustments, generally every 6 weeks.
Advantages of Invisalign
Many adults, especially working professionals, prefer Invisalign due to its aesthetic appeal. You don’t need to worry about wires and brackets drawing people’s unwanted attention.
Invisalign is More Comfortable
If your mouth is sensitive, Invisalign is the way to go. The material is softer and more flexible than traditional braces, Once the next adjustment is needed, you simply switch to your next Invisalign tray, generally weekly, in the comfort of your own home.
Generally speaking, Invisalign has a treatment length of 6-24 months, depending on the severity of your case. Braces will require at least a year, depending on your case.
Eat Whatever You Want
Invisalign is removed when eating or drinking anything other than water. That means you won’t need to avoid your favorite sticky foods. You also won’t need to follow the same strict brushing and flossing routine. However, you must wear your aligners 22 hours a day, so snacking with Invisalign needs to be kept to a minimum.
No emergency visits
As there are no sharp wires or broken brackets, Invisalign eliminates the unexpected emergency visit to your orthodontist.
Less office visits and virtual care available
Less frequent orthodontic office visits are needed compared to braces. Virtual monitoring via a special AI app is also available in case you wish to take a prolonged trip overseas or have a very busy work or school schedule.
Disadvantages of Invisalign
More expensive in some situations
Your Invisalign aligners will cost, on average, $3,000-$10,000. That’s at least $1,000 more than what your braces would cost.
Not Well Suited for Extreme Cases
As stated previously, Invisalign material is softer than the materials used for braces. This makes it difficult for them to be used for extreme teeth alterations. Some people use braces to begin with and then switch to Invisalign once their teeth have straightened out enough for the Invisalign to work properly. This is a commonly used hybrid approach by specialist orthodontists.
Remember to Remove Before Eating and Drinking
You must remember to remove your Invisalign aligners before eating or drinking anything that is not water. Failing to do this can damage your aligners or cause discoloration.
You will need to watch your schedule closely to make sure you are wearing your aligners for at least 22 hours every day. You will also need to regularly clean your aligners and brush your teeth every time you eat, to prevent plaque that could potentially cause tooth decay and gum disease.
As much as we would like to crown one of these orthodontic treatments as the best solution to crooked teeth, we can’t.
The choice is really up to you and your orthodontist.
However, we do have these thoughts to share.
Invisalign is best for: People who want small to medium alterations without any mouth discomfort or diet changes, and who have a very busy work schedule.
Braces are best for: People who want medium to major alterations without spending too much money or worrying about remembering to wear an appliance.
Does Invisalign take longer than braces?
No. Invisalign does not take longer to work than braces provided the case is not severe and you wear your aligners at least 22 hours a day.
What are the cons of Invisalign?
There are four cons to using Invisalign:
- It’s more expensive in some situations.
- It is not predictable in fixing deep overbites.
- They require 100% discipline and compliance with 22 hour a day wear.
- You must remember to take them in and out after you eat or drink a non-water beverage.
Are Invisalign cheaper than braces?
No. Invisalign is not cheaper than braces. You can expect to pay at least $1,000 more for Invisalign than braces. This is due to the lab fees and individualized aligners. However, in some situations, the price is the same as braces.
Is there anything Invisalign can’t fix?
Yes. Invisalign can’t fix severe and deep overbites. Extreme cases are better off using braces, which are sturdier and can be adjusted when needed.