Cosmetic procedures have boomed in recent years with society wanting the ‘perfect body’ and teeth are no exception to this. People are desiring to have the ‘Hollywood smile’ and there are a plethora of choices for those wanting perfectly straight teeth. Two of today’s most popular orthodontic treatments to straighten teeth is the use of dental braces and Invisalign. There are important differences between the two orthodontic treatments and each has pros and cons. Read on to find out more about braces vs Invisalign and which is the better choice for you!
Braces work by gradually applying pressure to your teeth so that they can slowly and incrementally move into the desired position. This orthodontic tooth movement process is called ‘bone remodelling’ and underneath the gum line (where teeth sit in the bone of the jaw), the teeth are encompassed by a small gap called the periodontal ligament. When the braces put force onto the teeth, the periodontal ligament is pressed on both sides, altering the bone around the teeth. This enables the teeth to gradually shift into a new placement.
Braces are brilliant for the more complex issues beyond just straightening teeth, such as misaligned teeth, a misaligned jaw, improper bites and crowded teeth. The process can take up to two years and is highly effective, especially if retainers are worn post brace removal to keep teeth in their new positions. Requiring brackets and wires, they cannot be removed and are worn 24/7, which is better for those with less self-discipline. Also coming with food restrictions, the downsides of getting braces are that the wires can irritate the mouth and make brushing and flossing trickier.
Invisalign is a revolutionary way of straightening teeth without having braces permanently stuck to your teeth. They work by digitally recreating your smile, using advanced software that cleverly calculates in which direction and how far each individual tooth needs to move in order to achieve the result you desire. This software knows the number of steps to break this movement down into and how long it will take and for each step, an aligner is created to fit over all of the teeth. Each aligner is usually worn for a fortnight, applying gentle force onto the teeth to slowly move them into the correct position. Once your teeth have moved, you move onto wearing a new aligner for the next phase to continue the process, until you reach the last step and your teeth have finished moving into their final position.
Patient motivation is the key to success with Invisalign, requiring more self-discipline than braces, as this type of orthodontic treatment is removable. Invisalign aligners need to be worn 22 hours of the day and are only removed for meal times. But, this is a huge perk of Invisalign as it means that you can still eat absolutely anything (unlike with braces as you can’t remove them!) Another benefit of removable braces are that they are super easy to clean, virtually invisible and not as noticeable as braces. Typically worn for about a year, this convenience has made the orthodontic treatment hugely popular with teens and adults alike. However, they don’t apply the same biomechanical forces that braces do and aren’t suitable for the more complex cases that require braces.
Looking for the perfect smile? Interested to find out more about braces vs Invisalign and which is suitable for you? Let us point to you to our local Winchester orthodontics for expert advice, teeth straightening tips and state-of-the-art orthodontic appliances. Get a confident smile with braces and Invisalign from Winchester experts today.