Orthodontics is one of the fascinating branches of dentistry that deals with the alignment of teeth and providing the patient the perfect smile.
Metal wire and brackets are the pictures everyone gets in their mind while thinking about orthodontic treatment.
However, with the advancement in dental treatments, braces are now available in the most aesthetic versions you could have ever imagined.
One among them is Invisalign braces. Invisalign are a type of orthodontic braces that help to straighten the teeth without using the traditional metal wires and brackets.
This type of treatment consists of a series of custom-made clear plastic aligners that help to move the teeth into proper position.
Although looking at the aesthetic value, Invisalign is the best choice for straightening teeth.
However, it all comes back to the cost of the treatment from a patient’s point of selection.
Invisalign typically cost a bit higher than the traditional braces. On average, the cost of a complete series of Invisalign may be between $3500 and $8000.
Consulting a dentist or an orthodontist can help you decide the best suitable option.
Additionally talking to your insurance provider can help to check if the treatment is covered under the plan.
Today’s article will highlight mainly on the differences between Invisalign and traditional braces in terms of aesthetics, functioning, and cost.
What do you mean by Invisalign?
Invisalign are referred to a set of clear plastic aligners that come in a series of preformed trays used by the patient at home.
These aligners use an exclusive 3D scanning technology, and thermoplastic material to custom fit the aligners and make them virtually invisible accurately. (1)
Invisalign is generally, used to treat specific malocclusions including –
- Overly crowded teeth
- Widely spaced teeth
- Relapse cases from traditional orthodontic treatment
- Simple bite irregularities
These aligners are digitally manufactured using a thermoplastic material to custom fit the bite of the patient.
The aligners are removable and can be taken off while eating, drinking, brushing, and flossing. An ideal amount of time to wear Invisalign daily is a minimum of 20 hours a day.
Duration of the treatment depends on the extent of malocclusion. Typically, a series of 20-30 aligners is required over time to obtain the desired results.
How is Invisalign different from traditional braces?
One of the most evident differences between the two types of braces is the aesthetic value.
Invisalign are clear and a perfect choice for adults undergoing orthodontic treatment while traditional braces consist of a metal wire and brackets.
Moreover, traditional braces are best suited to treat complex malocclusions like protrusions, irregular spacing, the crookedness of teeth, and severe malocclusions while Invisalign is designed to treat simpler malocclusions. (2)
The working mechanism of traditional braces depends on the flexible archwire that continually applies pressure to push the teeth back in position. The wire requires tightening every month.
The success of Invisalign depends upon the patient. Therefore, following a strict regime of wearing the aligners for at least 20 hours a day is crucial for successful results.
What are the benefits of using Invisalign over traditional braces?
Some of the benefits of using Invisalign over traditional braces may include –
- Aesthetics – Invisalign is better looking as they are virtually invisible. Invisalign are an excellent option for adults who need minor tooth corrections or straightening. The patient is often confident and motivated.
- Maintains good oral hygiene – Invisalign aligners are removable and can be taken out while eating, drinking, brushing, or flossing. They are the best aligners to maintain good oral health. Typically, aligners are to be work for at least 20 hours a day. (3)
- Comfort – Invisalign aligners cause fewer mouth and gum problems as compared to traditional braces, which are often uncomfortable to wear. The clear plastic is custom fitter to the patient’s mouth, which eliminates the chances of cheek cuts and gum inflammation. (4)
- Fewer dental visits – unlike traditional braces that require a monthly appointment to tighten the wire, patients opting for Invisalign receive several months worth of aligners in advance that can be replaced at home every two weeks.
- No damage repair – while it may be crucial to prevent the breakage of a bracket or wire, Invisalign can be easily replaced by the next set of aligners in the series.
What is the cost of Invisalign compared to traditional braces?
Invisalign uses an advanced 3D scanning and CAD/CAM technology to record the jaw and teeth alignments accurately.
Moreover, the flexible transparent material used in making an aligner significantly increases the cost of the treatment as compared to traditional braces. (5)
Additionally, the cost of treatment also depends upon the type of malocclusion. Significant gaps, severe misalignments require several aligners.
The traditional braces treatment may typically cost you around $3000 – $7000, which often includes the cost of diagnostic x-rays and consultation fees of the specialist.
However, the cost of a dental retainer post-treatment may not be included in the said price.
Invisalign aligners, on the other hand, are more towards the expensive side of dental treatments ranging from $4000 – $8000 for the complete series of aligners, diagnostic x-rays, and consultation fee.
Depending on the type of malocclusions and suitability of the patient, an orthodontist is often the best professional to take advice from before deciding on your treatment.
You can also check with your dental health insurance provider to see if such procedures are covered under the plan.
Take away message
Invisalign is the modern means of treating malocclusion without compromising the looks of the patient’s smile.
With the elimination of metallic wire and braces, Invisalign is boosting up the patient’s self-esteem and confidence.
Invisalign aligners typically come in a series of 20-30 aligners that are to be changed every two to three weeks.
Maintenance of oral hygiene is exceptionally good with aligners as they can be removed and worn back after tooth brushing and flossing.
Unlike traditional braces, Invisalign aligners do not break, and if lost they can be replaced by the next set of aligners in series.
With all the benefits and modern technology being used to form the perfect set of aligners, the cost of Invisalign becomes slightly more than the traditional orthodontic treatment.
However, you can always look for discounted dental plans offered by a dental clinic or talk to your insurance provider to be able to take advantage of the Invisalign treatment.