Invisalign vs braces is a comparison many people make when they consider straightening their teeth. If you want to decide on a treatment option, you should consider a few factors such as the effectiveness of each of these devices, the appearance, the risks involved and possibly the costs.
When it comes to establishing which of the two is more effective, there may be several opinions. The results may depend on various factors including the initial stage of the teeth. However, studies have shown that on average, both devices may straighten teeth and teeth that are straightened with Invisalign may require between 1 and 1½ years, while braces may require 2 years for the same results.
However, Invisalign may not be able to straighten certain teeth such as rounded lower molars, while braces have shown more positive results on such teeth. The results may also depend on your age. Younger patients may see results faster, as their teeth are easier to straighten.
Level of Comfort
In terms of comfort, Invisalign is clearly more advantageous, as you can remove the device whenever you are eating or cleaning your teeth. Braces can only be removed by your dentist and in some cases, the braces may cause discomfort, especially in the beginning when you are getting used to the device.
If the appearance of your teeth is important to you, you should opt for Invisalign, as the aligners are transparent and will not be as visible as the braces, which are metallic aligners.
Risks and Damage to Teeth
Given the fact that Invisalign is a removable device, the teeth are less exposed to decay and damage. The teeth can be properly cleaned, as the device can be removed.
When you have braces, you cannot remove these while you eat or clean your teeth and this can be a disadvantage leading to some teeth problems. Studies have shown that over 50% of patients with braces develop teeth decay and demineralization due to the device.
Length of Treatment
The length of treatment will depend on the initial condition of your teeth. However, on average, the Invisalign device should be worn for 12 to 18 months, provided that the device is worn 20 to 22 hours per day. Braces may require four to six months more on average to achieve the same results as with Invisalign.
In terms of costs, the braces are less expensive. Invisalign is a relatively new device that may be pricey for some. The average costs of an Invisalign device are around $5,000, but if you need adjustments for the device, these will cost extra. The costs of braces will be lower, with an average of $3,500.
All in all, you need to think about what’s important for you and decide which the best solution for your teeth is. You should also consult your dentist and ask him about which of the two is more suitable for your teeth.