When it comes to improving the appearance of your smile through teeth-straightening, most people think of metal wires and brackets that might irritate the insides of their mouth. Many people might cringe when they think of getting braces. Would people look at you differently? Would your friends mock you? Would you lose your confidence? These are questions that most people think of, when they have thoughts of straightening their teeth. Such thoughts are fair enough. Well, up until 1997…
In 1997 Invisalign was brought onto the market, initially in America and then throughout the rest of the world. Invisalign is the clear alternative to braces. Made of clear, comfortable and removable plastic, Invisalign aligners are nearly invisible so hardly anybody notices that you’re straightening your teeth.
Essentially, both braces and Invisalign serve the same purpose. The purpose of straightening teeth and ultimately improving one’s smile. Both braces and Invisalign are suitable for teenagers and adults. Both methods of straightening teeth can rectify crowding, spacing, overbite, underbite, overbite and crossbite.
But when you scratch through the gums (pun intended) there are significant differences.
The first major difference is comfortability. As mentioned, metal braces can often irritate the gums, mouth and tongue. This is because of the sharp and intrusive metal wires and brackets that shift the position of your teeth. In contrast, Invisalign aligners are made of clear plastic that feels smooth and unobtrusive against your gums, mouth and tongue.
The second major difference is convenience. Traditional metal braces are fixed to your teeth for a pre-determined amount of time, typically 1 – 5 years. This means they are not removable. The main implication here is your oral hygiene. Food can get stuck in between the wires and brackets which can add to issues such as gum disease and tooth decay because of the braces preventing adequate brushing and flossing between the wires and brackets. On the other hand, Invisalign aligners can be removed for eating, drinking, brushing and flossing which gives you a much higher chance of ensuring oral health.
The third major difference is aesthetics. Metal braces are clearly visible and noticeable. Have you ever noticed someone talking to you that is wearing braces? Of course you have! Braces are obvious. The metal wires and brackets are blatantly obvious. Conversely, Invisalign clear aligners are nearly invisible. You can be having an in-depth conversation with someone within close range to yourself and most of the time they won’t even notice you’re wearing Invisalign aligners.
The choice is clear. Invisalign is the clear alternative to braces.