More than half of the adult U.S. population surveyed over age 50 agree that a smile is the one physical feature that stays the most attractive as we age, according to a survey by the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry. And while there are many different aspects to positive oral health, correcting misalignment and bite issues can have medical benefits in addition to aesthetic benefits. The most common forms of aligners that general dentists performing orthodontics typically provide are braces and Invisalign. Some offer cheap Invisalign alternatives as well. If you're having trouble deciding which is the best option for you, we're here to help. Keep reading to discover the main pros and cons of each aligner type.
Braces are known for being a reliable and affordable teeth alignment method. They feature metal brackets that are connected with a wire that runs along the teeth. Most general dentists performing orthodontics can install braces, but unlike Invisalign, they can't be removed at will -- an orthodontist will have to periodically adjust them and eventually remove them.
Fortunately, metal braces can correct almost any alignment issue as well as more complex jaw issues. From closing gaps to correcting crooked teeth, braces are tried and true.
Invisalign, on the other hand, is more focused on aesthetics. They're typically better suited for those who need only minor corrections. Patients receive clear aligners that are worn 24 hours a day and switched out every two weeks or so. Fortunately, most people can talk normally wearing Invisalign as well. But as mentioned, there are some complicated issues that Invisalign may not resolve.
"Invisalign treatment can be expected to work more efficiently for esthetic purposes rather than for the purpose of improving the functionality of the teeth. This is why many people, especially those who have complex dental problems, still prefer dental braces," writes Darren Flowers on DentistryIQ.
According to an AACD survey, virtually all adults (99.7%) surveyed believe a healthy smile is socially important and understanding how to choose the right aligner type for your needs can make all the difference when it comes to the end results. Don't hesitate to consult with general dentists performing orthodontics for a professional input.