Shirley Wenger is a professional journalist and editor who has been working in the publishing industry for more than 15 years. She is an award-winning...Read more

People who want straighter teeth love the idea behind Invisalign, but most of them have one important question: Do braces work better than Invisalign on teeth? The truth is that one doesn’t necessarily work better than the other – they simply work in a different way. The key is to determine which solution works best for you. To help, today we’re sharing 5 questions to ask yourself when making your decision.

To understand the differences between metal braces and Invisalign on teeth, we first need to understand how the two treatments work.

Invisalign relies on transparent, retainer-like aligners to shift the teeth into place. The patient wears them for no less than 22 hours per day, changing them every two weeks to a new pair that will continue shifting their teeth. Typical treatment time is nine months to a year.

Metal braces use brackets that are bonded to the patient’s teeth and then connected by an arch wire, which applies pressure on the teeth. Every four weeks, the brackets are tightened and adjusted, which over time shifts the teeth into proper alignment.

Five Questions to Help You Decide: Braces or Invisalign on Teeth?

In many cases, Invisalign and braces are both feasible treatment options. But while the two treatments have the same task, there are blatant differences between them. The following five questions can help you understand the differences between the treatments, and decide which is best for you.

1. How serious is your case? In terms of which treatment is more effective, severity of the case is the number one determining factor. In general, Invisalign and metal braces can be equally as effectively. Most of these conditions include crooked or gapped teeth or an overbite, under bite or open bite. Some of the more serious cases that only metal braces can tackle include cross bites, malocclusions, extremely crooked teeth and various other flaws of the teeth and jaw.

2. Do you care if people know you’re wearing braces? One of our patients’ favorite things about Invisalign on teeth is its transparency; in fact, most people don’t even notice them until they are told. Metal braces, on the other hand, are rather bulky and definitely noticeable. For younger folks, this isn’t typically an issue; however, older kids and adults often hate the idea of everybody knowing they are wearing braces.

3. Are clean teeth important to you? A big challenge with metal braces is that they make it more difficult to clean your teeth. With wires running across your teeth, it’s practically impossible to floss and challenging for toothbrush bristles to reach certain areas. On the contrary, you can easily remove Invisalign for both these necessities, keeping your mouth healthy throughout the entire process.

4. How often do you want to visit the dentist or orthodontist? With Invisalign on teeth, you must have your trays renewed every two weeks, compared to four weeks for adjustments with metal braces. This can result in more frequent trips to the dentist.

5. Do you want to prevent stained teeth? Because Invisalign can be removed when eating food and cleaning teeth, it is easy to prevent gunk from accumulating on your teeth, which would otherwise create stains. Metal braces, on the other hand, have a tendency to trap food within their wires, which can cause staining.

If you need help deciding if braces or Invisalign on teeth are the right choice for you, call our office today to schedule a consultation and we’ll help!

Shirley Wenger is a professional journalist and editor who has been working in the publishing industry for more than 15 years. She is an award-winning writer and her work has been featured in various publications, including The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and Time Magazine.

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