Should I Get Invisalign or Braces?

January 24, 2020

Closeup of a woman with red lipstick putting on her Invisalign trays

Are you looking to straighten your teeth? You’re likely considering Invisalign® or braces. Here, we’ll explain how they compare to help you know if Invisalign or braces is better for your unique situation.

Invisalign 101

This straightening method uses clear plastic trays that fit over your teeth to gradually move them into proper alignment. Invisalign can correct mild to moderate misalignment issues.

Invisalign aligners are removable. You take them out when you eat, drink anything other than water, brush and floss, and get your teeth cleaned at the dentist. You can also take them out for a special occasion, an interview, or a date. However, it’s best to remove them only when necessary. You need to wear your aligners at least 20-22 hours each day for your treatment to be as efficient as possible.

Every couple weeks you will switch out the aligners for a new set to continue your teeth’s progression. While you may feel some pressure when you switch out your new aligners, it won’t be painful.

Braces 101

Traditional braces can fix even the most complex alignment issues. These include mild to severe underbites, overbites, crowding, gaps, mismatched midlines (when the middle of your lower and upper teeth don’t line up), open bites (when there’s a gap between the top and bottom teeth when the mouth is closed), and more!

Typical braces are made of wires that are connected to either metal or ceramic brackets. These brackets are little squares adhered to your teeth for the entirety of your orthodontic treatment. The wires apply pressure to the brackets, gradually moving your teeth into proper alignment. Treatment can look different from one patient to the next. Some patients need two phases of braces or additional tools like a palate expander or rubber bands attached in various patterns to make their treatment more successful.

Every several weeks the wires will need to be adjusted and tightened so that they continue to move your teeth into the right position. Your teeth and mouth may feel more sensitive around this time. Orthodontic wax will help ease any mouth irritation.

Invisalign or Braces?

Whether Invisalign or braces is the right option for you depends on your alignment needs and lifestyle.

Although Invisalign is discreet and allows for simple cleaning of your teeth, the trays cannot fix all alignment issues, can be lost or forgotten, and require daily maintenance to prevent warping and discoloration. Though a good denture cleaner or Retainer Brite® can make cleaning simple. Additionally, some patients report the near constant wear time aids in their weight loss goals.

Braces can tackle complex alignment issues, but the brackets are more noticeable, can irritate your mouth, require meticulous cleaning, and preclude the eating of certain foods. Many patients with braces find oral hygiene easier with an electric toothbrush, interdental brushes, floss threaders, and a water flosser.

Schedule Your Consultation for Invisalign in Katy, TX

Our expert team can help you decide if Invisalign clear aligner therapy is the right solution to your misalignment. We’d be thrilled to have you visit our dental office in Katy, TX, for a consultation. Contact us today!