Braces to Invisalign: A New Patient’s Guide to Straightening Teeth
Many people are looking to straighten their teeth for a healthy smile. Luckily enough, more options are now available than ever.
Before, the only option was traditional braces. However, there are now newer technologies, such as Invisalign.
So are you considering orthodontic treatment? If yes, choose the most suitable option for you. Learn more about straightening teeth and what will work best for you.
This guide will explore the key differences between braces and Invisalign. We’ll provide more guidance to help you make an informed decision.
One of the most significant differences between braces and Invisalign is their appearance. Braces use metal brackets and wires. They are used to move teeth into their desired positions.
These materials have become smaller and more discreet over the years. However, they are still visible in the mouth. For some people, the appearance of braces can be a significant concern.
Invisalign, on the other hand, is designed to be nearly invisible. The aligners are made of clear plastic, so they blend in with the teeth and are difficult to notice. It makes them a popular option for people who want teeth straightening without drawing attention to their orthodontic treatment.
Wearing braces can be uncomfortable at first. The brackets and wires can irritate the inside of the mouth.
You can mitigate this discomfort with wax or other orthodontic products. Still, adjusting to the feeling of getting braces can take some time.
Invisalign, on the other hand, is designed to be more comfortable than braces. The aligners are made of smooth plastic. They fit snugly over the teeth.
There are no sharp edges or protruding wires to irritate. However, some people may experience mild discomfort when switching to a new set of aligners. But it usually subsides after a day or two.
Traditional braces often require two to three years of treatment. Invisalign treatment takes between 12 and 18 months. However, this can vary depending on the orthodontic issue’s complexity.
It’s important to note that the length of treatment time can also depend on patient compliance. It would be best to visit the orthodontist regularly to have your wires tightened for braces. It can help move the teeth into their desired positions faster.
For Invisalign, you must wear aligners for 22 hours daily. It can help achieve the desired results. Failure to comply with either treatment regimen can lengthen the treatment time.
Cost is often a significant factor for people considering orthodontic treatment. Traditional braces cost between $3,000 and $7,000. It would also depend on the length of treatment and the complexity of the orthodontic issue.
Invisalign treatment can cost more, between $3,500 and $8,000. Remember, though, that the cost would also depend on your location. Additionally, some dental insurance plans may cover a portion of the cost of orthodontic treatment.
Maintaining oral hygiene is essential during orthodontic treatment. It helps avoid tooth decay and other health issues.
With traditional braces, cleaning between the brackets and wires can be challenging- thus, leading to plaque buildup and other problems.
Using particular tools like floss threaders and interdental brushes would be best. On the contrary, Invisalign aligners are removable. That makes it easier to maintain good oral hygiene during treatment!
You can remove the aligners. Then you can brush and floss like usual. Replace the aligners afterward.
However, it would be best to clean your aligners often to prevent bacteria and odor buildup. You can clean it using special cleaning tablets. You can also use a soft-bristled toothbrush and lukewarm water.
Patients with traditional braces must avoid certain foods. Certain foods can damage or dislodge brackets and wires.
Here’s a list of common diet restrictions for patients undergoing orthodontic treatment, along with a short description for each one:
Sticky and Chewy Foods
These include gum, caramel, taffy, and more. These foods can get stuck in the brackets and wires of traditional braces. That makes them very difficult to clean.
Hard and Crunchy Food
Foods like popcorn, nuts, and hard candy are great examples! They can break or dislodge the brackets and wires of traditional braces.
Sugary and Acidic Foods and Drinks
Soda, energy drinks, candy, and other sugary or acidic foods can increase the risk of tooth decay and cavities.
Chewing on Hard Objects
It includes habits like biting your nails and chewing on pens or pencils. These are habits that can damage the braces or aligners.
Invisalign aligners are removable. That means you can eat whatever you like during treatment.
However, remember to remove the aligners before eating. Then clean your teeth and aligners before putting them back in. Failure to do so can lead to food particles getting trapped in the aligners and potentially causing tooth decay or gum disease.
Both traditional braces and Invisalign aligners are effective at straightening teeth. They are also great at correcting bite issues.
However, the effectiveness of each treatment varies. It would depend on the specific orthodontic issue being addressed.
Traditional braces are generally better at fixing more severe or complex orthodontic problems. At the same time, Invisalign aligners are better suited for mild to moderate issues.
Remember that the effectiveness of orthodontic treatment also depends on patient compliance. Following your orthodontist’s instructions is best because seeing the dramatic Invisalign results before and after treatment can be an enriching experience.
Choose the Best Treatment for Straightening Teeth
If appearance is a significant concern, Invisalign aligners may be the better option. Traditional braces may be the way for patients looking for a more affordable option.
Remember, both treatments for straightening teeth need patience and dedication. Take proper care of your teeth to achieve the best results.
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