Braces are the conventional, tried-and-true method of straightening your teeth. Invisalign is the new kid on the block, offering you unique features, different costs, and tons of new options. If you want to get braces, you may be wondering if a metal appliance of braces vs Invisalign treatment is right for you.
This guide answers your questions about the difference between Invisalign vs braces, including what you can expect from your treatment and how much it will cost. It’s important to weigh all possible treatment options before deciding on a plan of action. We hope to inform you so you can make the right call for yourself (with help from your orthodontist, of course).
Want to find out if you or your child needs braces? Visit Reese Orthodontics in Charleston, SC for leading orthodontic care.
Braces: What You Need to Know
Braces have had the same basic design for hundreds of years. Even back then, doctors knew the benefits of using braces to correct cosmetic and oral health issues.
Though their basic function and design (an archwire that applies steady force on your teeth by connecting multiple brackets) have remained unchanged, braces today are more comfortable and customizable than ever.
Types of Braces
Braces come in three main types: metal, lingual, and ceramic. They accomplish the same basic task of gradually straightening your teeth using different materials and application methods.
Normal metal braces are attached to brackets on the front of each treated tooth and secured by rubber bands. Lingual braces attach to the backs of teeth, providing discretion during treatment and sparing the patient’s gums from discomfort. Ceramic braces are made of clear material that isn’t as obvious as metal, but their function is largely the same.
Cost of Braces
Different braces cost more or less depending on materials. Ceramic braces, for instance, are more expensive. The cost of your treatment also depends on the scope of your oral health issues, the length of time you will need to wear them, and more.
On average, patients will pay between $3,000 and $7,500 for metal braces and up to $8,500 for ceramic ones.
Benefits of Braces
Braces offer a consistent method to treat even severe misalignment. Many insurance plans (especially state-subsidized ones) offer coverage for braces that may not apply to Invisalign.
Additionally, braces can be customized with different colored rubber bands to make treatment more fun and personal.
Downsides of Braces
Braces may be a time-honored treatment, but they also present unique hurdles that patients need to overcome. The inability to remove braces mid-treatment can be uncomfortable, as well as inconvenient for people who are conscious about their image.
Additionally, braces can be difficult to clean as they impede normal brushing and flossing. Care must be taken to maintain good oral hygiene throughout the treatment process.
Invisalign: What You Need to Know
Compared to braces, Invisalign is a relatively new treatment option, being founded in 1997 and gaining momentum in the early 2000s as a viable alternative to braces.
Unlike braces, Invisalign can be removed to eat, drink, attend a meeting, take a school picture, and more. This can improve a patient’s comfort as well as confidence.
Invisalign is also discreet compared to braces (so long as patients keep their appliances clean). They provide greater comfort during treatment as well as allow patients to feel confident about their smiles. Invisalign treatment also requires fewer visits to the orthodontist since multiple aligners can be made at once.
However, Invisalign is costly compared to braces, with a quoted price that can range from $2,000 to $9,000 and far fewer insurance companies cover Invisalign.
Additionally, Invisalign cannot be used to treat major dental realignment issues because, without an archwire, an Invisalign appliance cannot dramatically change a tooth’s position.
How to Choose Between Braces and Invisalign
The best way to choose between braces and Invisalign is to try to eliminate one. For example, your orthodontist may discover that your alignment issues are too severe to use Invisalign at all.
The price factor can make the decision easier, as can your individual standards of comfort. Braces are much harder on tooth health, gum health, and sleeping habits than Invisalign. They can also negatively impact a patient’s self-image, which may be a deciding factor depending on you or your child’s needs.
However, braces are less expensive as well as less hands-on since they cannot be removed. Speak with your orthodontist about you or your child’s needs when making this decision.
Choose Reese Orthodontics
If you’re an adult who is considering braces, you need professional advice on your treatment and payment options. For orthodontic treatments in Charleston, SC, Reese Orthodontics offers the latest technology and treatment plans. Our advanced and comfortable orthodontic treatments can be customized to suit your needs. A consultation with Reese Orthodontics includes scans, a comprehensive exam, and a conversation with the orthodontist to discover which treatment options are right for you.
Schedule an appointment with us today to stay ahead of your oral health and receive the best possible treatment in your area.