Invisalign vs. Braces
While Invisalign provides several benefits, including removable aligners, shorter treatment timelines, and a more comfortable fit, traditional braces are often more appropriate for patients with complex orthodontic issues. To determine which treatment is right for you, Dr. Sooyeon Ahn can evaluate your dental needs, goals, and personal preferences during your consultation at our McLean, VA, practice. Dr. Ahn invites you to learn more about Invisalign vs. braces to help you understand which option may be best for you.
Why Choose Invisalign?
Invisalign clear aligners provide patients with a discreet alternative to traditional braces, making it a popular choice among teens and adults. These aligners can treat a range of dental issues, including:
- Gapped teeth
- Overly crowded teeth
Invisalign trays are made from smooth plastic designed to avoid irritating the soft tissues of the mouth. They are customized to fit comfortably over your top and bottom teeth. By exerting a gentle yet steady force, they can guide teeth into their proper positions. Invisalign requires fewer visits to the office than braces. Usually, patients only need checkups about every six weeks.
Invisalign clear aligners provide patients with a discreet alternative to traditional braces, making it a popular choice among teens and adults.
Because the aligners are removable, there are no dietary restrictions during treatment. You can also maintain the same oral hygiene regimen. Simply remove the aligners before eating or brushing and flossing your teeth.
If aligners are worn consistently and as directed, patients are able to complete their treatment in about 12 to 18 months. Traditional braces generally take longer. The duration of treatment will ultimately depend on the severity of dental misalignment.
When Traditional Braces are Recommended
While both Invisalign and braces can treat overcrowding, spacing issues, and malocclusions, such as an overbite or underbite, we typically recommend traditional braces for more complex cases. Although you may face a longer treatment timeline, metal braces are simply more effective when it comes to correcting severe malocclusion. They can also be a better choice for patients who feel they may forget to wear their aligners as prescribed. Invisalign requires patients to consistently wear their aligners 20 to 22 hours each day.
However, this is not to say that patients who wear braces will not need self-discipline. Although braces eliminate the risk of losing your hardware, you must still take special care to thoroughly brush and floss. Your braces can make it easier for food and debris to become trapped, so it pays to follow your orthodontist's instructions in order to avoid cavities. In order to avoid damaging your hardware, you must also avoid eating foods that are especially chewy, sticky, crunchy, or hard.
About every four weeks, Dr. Ahn can tighten the wires connecting the brackets. These adjustments will help to gradually shift teeth into proper alignment.
Schedule Your Consultation
Both traditional braces and Invisalign are effective treatment options that can dramatically improve the health and appearance of your smile. To begin your journey to a straighter smile, schedule a consultation with Dr. Ahn today. You may contact us online or call (703) 356-7001.