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If you are unhappy with your teeth, you are likely researching different orthodontic options like Invisalign and traditional braces. As a dental practice that provides both, we understand how difficult it can be choosing between the two methods, and which is best for your dental health. 

What are traditional braces?

Braces are the typical orthodontic treatment consisting of metal brackets and wires attached to both arches of the jaw using a strong dental-grade glue. Finally, the appliance is topped with wires running from bracket to bracket. 

Around every four to six weeks, the wires are tightened to gently push the teeth into the desired position selected by you and your LV Dental dentist. 

What is Invisalign®?

Invisalign, on the other hand, utilises a series of clear, plastic aligners switched on a bi-weekly basis. Each aligner has slight differences from the last, gently nudging your teeth towards their final position planned out during your initial consultation with one of our experienced dentists. 

Making the decision

Debating whether braces vs. Invisalign is the best treatment for your smile becomes more nuanced when you consider the various types of braces on the market today. Long gone are the days of metal-only braces with brightly elastic bands (ligatures). 

The first difference when considering Invisalign vs. braces is obviously the invisibility factor. If you are ready to straighten your teeth, but not quite prepared to cement metal brackets to your teeth for the foreseeable future, metal braces might not be the best option for you.

The benefits of traditional braces

  • No possibility of user error.
  • Consistent pressure on the teeth, 24/7.
  • Metal is stronger than the plastic aligners.
  • Less expensive.
  • Ability to correct much more than simple alignment or crowding issues.
  • Ligatures add a potential factor of personalisation.

The benefits of Invisalign

  • More comfortable as there are no wires to poke and prod the soft tissue in your mouth.
  • Concentrated treatment – only misaligned teeth will be moved.
  • Ability to remove the aligners.
  • Freedom to practice good oral hygiene.
  • No dietary restrictions.
  • Virtually invisible.
  • Can view digital imaging of how your teeth will look during and after treatment at your consultation.  

Invisalign vs. braces, which is better?

The definitive answer will depend on multiple factors, including your current dental health and how much change is necessary to reach your dream smile. 

One of the leading factors in the braces vs. Invisalign discussion is the necessary changes needed to reach your desired smile. Simple misalignment and crowding issues can be corrected by both orthodontic systems. More complex dental issues involving the jaw and surrounding structures cannot be treated with Invisalign. Due to the nature and removability of clear aligners, no additional appliances can be attached to adjust things like cross, under or overbites. In these cases, your dentist will be firm about braces being the only available orthodontic treatment. 

Aside from the specifics, there are a few general deliberations that could help you make the final decision regarding Invisalign vs. braces. 

Another aspect to consider when contemplating braces vs. Invisalign is your willingness to wear the aligners. The ability to remove the aligners for shorter periods is a luxury but should not be abused as it could lead to a longer and more expensive treatment period. If you think you cannot or will not wear the aligners for 22 hours a day, it is better to choose with traditional braces. 

If you are wondering about using the Invisalign orthodontic method for a teen, keep in mind you will not always be around and can’t keep tabs on whether they are wearing their aligners for the allotted period. Unfortunately, younger adults are more often to skimp out on the wear time. Therefore, age could be a determining factor when choosing braces vs. Invisalign. 

Cost is another influential factor that must be weighed when choosing between the two methods. Invisalign usually will be slightly more expensive than traditional braces because there are more materials involved throughout the treatment. 

Although the choice of braces vs. Invisalign is important for comfort and confidence, both treatments are highly-effective and will eventually provide you with a beautiful, straight smile. Luckily, you don’t have to make the final choice on your own; LV Dental is there to provide information and support regarding orthodontic treatments and which is most suitable for your smile and your lifestyle. 

To book your consultation, please call LV Dental on (02) 9158 6373.