If the time has come for either you or your child to see an orthodontist, then you know he or she has several options when it comes to teeth straightening. Two of the most popular are that of traditional braces and Invisalign. Both have their pros and cons and not everyone is a candidate for both. In order to find the one that is most appropriate for you, it is best to talk to a professional.
Aside from being less expensive, traditional braces, which can be made from either metal or ceramic, tend to produce better results for patients who have significantly crooked teeth that need to be straightened. Additionally, many dentists feel that traditional braces are also better at fixing overcrowded teeth, as well. You also want to choose traditional braces if you have teeth that are sitting at noticeably different heights. Moreover, if you are a coffee or wine drinker or are a smoker, than traditional braces may be a better choice because the adhesive that is used to keep Invisalign aligners in place can become strained and start to become more noticeable over the course of treatment.
However, bear in mind that the wires and brackets of traditional braces are visible and can cause ulcers and pain in the patient’s mouth. This is especially true right after an adjustment which occurs, on average, once a month. Additionally, braces are fixed and not removable during treatment and can make it difficult to eat certain types of food including apples, nuts, and sticky foods. The brackets can also make it difficult to clean and floss your teeth.
Invisalign is made from clear plastic and the process does not involve any wires, elastics or brackets. It is a treatment which relies on retainers that must be worn 22 hours a day. Additionally, each set is removable and is worn for approximately two weeks before it is replaced by a new one. Due to the fact that they are clear, they are highly discrete and unlikely to be noticed. Invisalign is also more comfortable than traditional braces and, because they are removable, do not inhibit brushing and flossing. Moreover, you can eat whatever you want.
Like traditional braces, crowded teeth and/or wisdom teeth may need to be removed before treatment can begin. Both procedures begin with x-rays, pictures, and molds taken of the teeth. The process lasts around the same amount of time for each one. Additionally, you will also have to wear a retainer once treatment is complete so that your teeth do not shift. Moreover, most dental insurance companies do not distinguish between the two treatments. However, unless they are a medical necessity because your teeth are interfering with eating and/or speaking, most will not cover either one. It is best to call the company and ask what is covered in order to assist you with making your decision. It is also important to note that not all orthodontists work with Invisalign.