Teeth straightening is a far cry from what it used to be. Dentistry has changed significantly in the last decade with improved technology and a focus on prevention. Getting work done on your teeth used to require invasive procedures and cause discomfort.
Today, thanks to innovation and technology, most dental procedures are carried out in much less time and are completely painless. There are also many new opportunities for treatments and procedures to improve the appearance of teeth.
Invisalign is one of the new treatments that has revolutionised teeth straightening. Invisalign teeth straightening treatment uses a series of clear aligners to gently move teeth in a very controlled way. Unlike traditional fixed braces, there are no brackets or wires.
Invisalign aligners can be used to treat overly crowded teeth, widely spaced teeth, overbite, crossbite and simple bite irregularities. The average treatment time for teeth straightening with Invisalign is 14 months.
Dental braces are essential for more serious cases of overcrowding, protrusions, alignment problems and irregular spacing or crookedness. However, the dental braces of today are very different from those used in the early days of orthodontics. Patients can now select from a range of materials for their braces, including ceramic ones, which blend in with all shades of teeth. Dental brace wires are also much lower in profile these days.
Comprehensive orthodontic braces are recommended for children and more serious cases of alignment issues in adults.
The pros and cons of Invisalign
Invisalign aligners come with the obvious benefit of improving the alignment of teeth without the unfortunate aesthetic of traditional braces. Invisalign aligners are removable, virtually invisible and comfortable. The aligners are also convenient and easy to clean. Another advantage of Invisalign aligners is the fact that movement of individual teeth can be controlled and planned in order, with different aligners focusing on certain teeth.
The main disadvantage of Invisalign is the commitment required by the patient for treatment success. It is essential to wear the aligners as directed and as they are easily removed, it can be too easy for patients to remove them for specific occasions and this can have a dramatic impact on results.
Another inconvenience is having to remove the aligners when you eat and the fact that you are required to brush your teeth before replacing the aligner, which for some may be embarrassing when going out to eat.
The pros and cons of braces
Metal braces are made from high-grade stainless steel and do not break easily. Today’s metal braces are much more refined and smaller than the unattractive braces used a few years ago. Metal braces are usually the most affordable option for teeth straightening and, unlike Invisalign aligners, because they are fixed to the teeth, there are no issues with patient compliance.
Clear ceramic braces are a viable alternative to Invisalign for those who are concerned about the aesthetics of braces, especially if there are likely to be issues with compliance. For cosmetic appeal, stainless steel braces can be coated with gold.
The obvious disadvantage of conventional braces is appearance. Also, the patient has to be careful about what they eat. Hard, crunchy or chewy foods can break the brackets or wires on braces. Braces can also be uncomfortable when they are first fitted and it can take several days to get used to them.
Which will work best for you?
Invisalign braces aren’t suitable for everyone. The best form of treatment will depend on the individual case. At Black Swan Dental Spa, we regularly use either traditional orthodontics or Invisalign to straighten teeth. In every case we assess which form of treatment is best and explain why. If you would like to know more about teeth straightening and the options available to you, please get in touch with our specialist teeth straightening team today.