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8 Reasons to Choose Invisible Aligners over Metal Braces

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Last Updated: October 5, 2020

Misaligned teeth can put you at higher risk for gum disease, cavities, and other oral health problems. This is primarily due to the difficulty of keeping teeth clean because of teeth crowding, an overbite, or an underbite. Completing orthodontic treatment can improve your dental health and your smile.

If you are an adult, it is not too late to get the smile you have always wanted, while improving oral health at the same time. You also do not need to settle for metal braces with brackets and wires if you prefer to be more discrete about your orthodontic treatment.

Orthodontic treatment with invisible braces allows you to wear clear aligners that put pressure on your teeth to move them into the desired position. You swap out one aligner for a new one approximately every two weeks. Below are eight benefits you can expect if you choose an invisible aligner over traditional metal braces.

1. Aligners Are Removable and Easier to Maintain

Invisible braces give you the freedom to remove your aligners to eat, brush your teeth, or if you just need a break. Despite this, your treatment plan will still recommend that you wear your aligner trays as much as possible, especially when sleeping. Most orthodontists recommend you wear your clear aligners 22 to 23 hours per day.

While you will not have to worry about broken brackets or wires with aligner trays, you will still need to continue caring for your teeth and the aligners. When brushing your teeth, do not forget to brush the aligners to remove food particles and bacteria.

2. At-Home Treatment Options Available with No In-Person Orthodontist Visit Required

If you are trying to avoid in-person dental visits, dental practices across the country now offer the option of completing your invisible aligner consultation by phone or online. You may also want to check out the websites of online-first practices like Byte or SmileDirectClub. After you have answered a few quick questions, you will be shipped dental molds in the mail that you need to follow the instructions on and return. After your dental partner receives the molds, the next step is to create a series of customized aligners according to your treatment plan and needs. You will receive these aligners by mail and will continue to check in periodically with the orthodontist via phone or video conferencing.

3. Aligners Are Invisible and Look So Much Better

It will be difficult for anyone to know you wear aligners on your teeth unless they are standing inches from your face or you tell them. That means you won’t have the typical self-consciousness that people experience when wearing metal braces. With the clear color of the aligners and the ability to remove them, you will get to see your treatment progress as a constant reminder of the benefits of getting a straighter smile.

4. Less Pain, Sores, or Discomfort from Metal Wires and Braces

With traditional braces, you must visit the orthodontist monthly to tighten the wires and check the condition of the brackets. Unfortunately, brackets and wires can break easily when biting into food, bumping your mouth, or even when brushing your teeth. Ask anyone who has had braces before, and they will tell you horror stories of wires that constantly poke your cheeks or brackets that fall off.

5. Less Dangerous for Contact Sports

Football and hockey are just two examples of contact sports where it can be dangerous to wear braces. It only takes a slight hit to the mouth for the braces to come loose or the wires to cause cuts and bleeding inside the mouth. With invisible aligners, you always have the option to remove the aligners if you are concerned about potential injuries to your mouth. Orthodontists often recommend that you continue to wear aligners for practice but switch back to your mouth guard for full speed practice or game days.

6. Less Difficulty Eating and Food Getting Caught in Braces

No matter what food you eat, it is easy for food particles to become trapped in the brackets of your braces. This can be both incredibly awkward and uncomfortable if you do not have the chance to brush your teeth right away. Eating is much more comfortable with invisible aligners because you can remove the aligners and eat as you normally would. Once you have finished your meal, just rinse your mouth and put the aligner back in your mouth and you’re good to go.

7. Less Tooth Discoloration Due to Difficult Hygiene

Discoloration and bad breath can set in when a tooth has a bracket and wires covering it for two years or longer, which is the average length of treatment with traditional braces. The main reason for this is that it is almost impossible to brush and floss underneath the brackets to get your teeth as clean as possible. You will not have this problem with aligner trays since you can just remove your aligner to brush your teeth. It will be much easier for you to brush, floss, and reach all areas in your mouth when you do not have wires spanning your teeth.

8. Easier Initial Fitting Process

Having an orthodontist put dental adhesive on your teeth and then install the brackets and wires can take a few hours. Your orthodontist also needs to take impressions of your teeth, gums, and jaws before installing the braces. With invisible braces, your orthodontist just takes an impression (which you can do from home), creates a set of customized aligners, and has you try on the first one to ensure the right fit. That’s all there is to it.

Cost, treatment time, and insurance coverage are additional considerations when deciding between metal braces and invisible aligners. The orthodontic practice you visit should provide this information and more during your initial consultation.