Clear aligners such as Invisalign® are a popular method for fixing crooked teeth and bite dysfunctions. For many individuals who want to repair their smiles, clear aligners are a great solution. However, for some, metal braces would work more effectively. Your dentist can help you understand what option makes the most sense for your needs…
Pros and Cons of Clear Braces
Clear braces have been a hot topic in the dental world for many years. Are clear aligners safe? Does the system move teeth adequately? Most importantly, can all patients be fitted with clear braces? Read on to discover the pros and cons of using clear aligners like Invisalign® to straighten teeth.
Pros of clear braces
Standard metal braces, especially for teenagers and adult patients, can sometimes feel like too much and a frustrating repeat of childhood braces. Patients who have simple dental needs, such as aligning one or two crooked teeth, fixing a slight malocclusion, or taking care of minor crowding, are good candidates for Invisalign®.
Clear braces are cosmetically attractive
Not only can clear braces can align teeth in a simple and quick manner, but they also look less obvious than metal braces. These aligners are designed to straighten teeth while remaining nearly invisible. For patients who have had bad experiences with traditional braces or those who do not want to change their appearance by wearing braces, Invisalign® is a cosmetically appealing alternative.
Clear braces are easier to remove and maintain
Invisalign® uses aligners that can be taken out and put back in at any time. Traditional braces are known for trapping food within brackets, being difficult to floss, and sometimes chafing lips and gums. Maintenance of braces can be time-consuming, but such care is unneeded if a patient is a candidate for Invisalign®: Teeth can be brushed and flossed normally, and dental appointments need not be skipped for fear of having to take off wires or potentially damage brackets.
Cons of clear braces
Clear braces do have their drawbacks: The patient needs to be able to understand the treatment process, comply with the dentist’s directions, and be able to switch old aligners for new ones every two weeks (or as often as the dentist recommends). For children or forgetful adults, not following all of the rules could mean stalled progress in their dental treatment.
Clear braces can come with hard-to-remember instructions
Traditional metal braces are ideal for children: They adhere to the patient’s teeth and stay in the mouth, and while they require some maintenance like brushing, flossing, and possible rubber-band wearing, it is nothing an older child cannot handle. Clear aligners need to be taken out when the patient is eating, cleaned regularly, and exchanged for a new pair on a set schedule. These rules can be difficult for children to remember, especially kids who are already busy. Aligners could potentially be lost, chewed up by pets, or otherwise damaged.
Clear braces are not for everybody
Clear aligners like Invisalign® cannot correct major dental issues. Severe malocclusion, missing or broken teeth, or gum disease necessitates a conversation with the dentist to determine the right course of treatment.
If you need braces to correct a minor dental issue, clear aligners could be an ideal choice. Speak to your dentist, do research, and discover how Invisalign® treatment can result in a beautiful smile in a low-maintenance, cost-effective way.
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