It’s so much easier to maintain a healthy and happy smile now that we have all kinds of oral hygiene tools and orthodontic treatments at our disposal. While people in the past had to make do with crooked teeth and constant gingivitis, we citizens of the 21st Century can now resolve even the most severe oral health problems with proper dental treatment and home care.
Braces and Invisalign trays are the most popular and trusted solutions to crooked teeth. However, it can be quite overwhelming to decide which one of these two treatments best matches your needs. Here are some important Invisalign pros and cons to consider before your next trip to the dentist.
What is Invisalign?
Invisalign is a treatment option that involves clear tray aligners as opposed to metal braces and wires. These aligners are similar to removable retainers in that they slowly move and align your teeth into a better position.
You’ll need to consult your dentist first before getting Invisalign aligners. Your dentist will need to carefully examine your teeth first, take accurate impressions, and determine the best treatment plan to follow.
Like braces, Invisalign treatments are specially made to follow the exact mold of your teeth. Each aligner is designed to be unique for each patient, so you won’t be able to find ready-made ones at your disposal. Since Invisalign treatments require clear aligner trays to be replaced every one to two weeks, each new aligner may feel slightly different from before.
What makes Invisalign popular with so many people is that unlike braces, which have to be worn 24/7 for a few months to a few years, clear tray aligners are easily removable. Although you’ll need to wear aligners for up to 22 hours a day to achieve good results, you can remove them without any problem when it’s time to eat, brush, floss, or wear a mouthguard for sports.
Another reason why Invisalign is an incredibly popular treatment option is that they’re invisible. People who are conscious of how orthodontics look on their teeth won’t have to deal with too much embarrassment when they attend parties or go on dates while wearing clear and unobtrusive Invisalign trays in their mouths. Since Invisalign doesn’t use brackets or wires, you won’t have to worry about puckered lips or stray wires, either.
Most Invisalign treatment plans involve up to 48 trays and require a treatment time of around 6 to 18 months depending on the patient’s case. It may take you much longer to get the straight and perfect teeth you need if you aren’t able to wear your aligners for 20-22 hours a day as prescribed.
Invisalign users will need to visit their dentist every 4-6 weeks to check up on how their treatment is going. They’ll also need to replace their clear aligner trays every 1-2 weeks to ensure that their teeth continue to move and shift in the right direction. It may take much longer for you to finish your treatment plan if you skip out on important check-ups or forget to replace your aligners when needed.
Pros of Invisalign Treatment
Many people prefer to undergo Invisalign treatments since they aren’t as uncomfortable or high-maintenance as wearing braces. Here are some pros of wearing clear Invisalign aligners:
1. It's More Comfortable
Invisalign isn’t as uncomfortable as braces since it doesn’t involve any wires or metal brackets. You won’t have to deal with stray brace wires poking your cheeks or huge metal brackets that make speaking somewhat difficult. There aren’t any irritating chemicals or sharp edges to worry about, which makes wearing Invisalign feel more relaxing and risk-free.
2. It Looks Better
A lot of people tend to be embarrassed when wearing braces since the metal brackets and wires can stand out quite a bit. Some people also worry about how the prolonged use of braces can cause quite a bit of “Duck-lip syndrome”. When I had my braces removed in high school, it didn’t take long for people to notice that my lips puckered quite a bit.
Many people prefer wearing Invisalign since it’s designed to be as clear and invisible to the naked eye as possible. Invisalign trays aren’t nearly as noticeable as braces, making it easy for you to smile and laugh without feeling conscious. Many teens and adults prefer to opt for Invisalign as it’s less likely to result in any embarrassment or awkward situations.
3. It's Less of a Hassle
Braces aren’t always easy to wear. People who wear braces sometimes have to deal with inconvenient situations like food stuck between wires, occasional pain from adjustments, and breakage. There are also some people who just don’t like having metal brackets and wires stuck to the surfaces of their teeth 24 hours a day.
Invisalign treatments don’t come with as much inconvenience since they’re removable. While braces require a ton of vigilance and care during eating or physical activity, Invisalign aligners can simply be taken out as needed. You can also floss and brush your teeth better and faster since there aren’t any thick wires or brackets to deal with, thus lowering your risk of gum disease and cavities.
4. It's Easier to Maintain
There are plenty of quick and easy cleaning options for Invisalign. You can purchase a special cleaning kit made for the Invisalign system, or try other retainer-cleaning products. If you have doubts about using special cleaning products, you can also clean your clear aligner trays with a toothbrush and gentle liquid soap once a day.
Another easy cleaning option is to simply soak your trays in a mixture of equal parts vinegar and lukewarm water for 15 minutes up to half an hour. Once that’s done, lightly brush the tray with a soft-bristled toothbrush then rinse with lukewarm water. Remember to avoid using toothpaste, denture cleaners, hard-bristled toothbrushes, toothpaste, mouthwash, and abrasive products for cleaning since they may damage the plastic.
5. It Allows Whitening Treatments
Whitening treatments aren't always possible for people with braces since the metal brackets cover large areas of the teeth. However, people who wear Invisalign trays are free to use whitening toothpaste and get the whitening treatments they need since there aren't any areas of the teeth that are covered.
Cons of Invisalign Treatment
Like any treatment option, Invisalign comes with its own fair share of disadvantages. Here are some cons of Invisalign aligners to consider:
1. Trays Need to be Worn for a Long Time
You’ll need to wear your Invisalign clear aligner trays for at least 22 hours a day to get good results. You may have trouble resisting the urge to wear them for reasons other than daily brushing and eating. Sleeping with Invisalign retainers in your mouth may also be a difficult adjustment for some. If you feel like strict compliance to oral treatment regimens isn’t your strong point, you might want to opt for braces instead.
2. You Might Need Noticeable Attachments
Some Invisalign treatment patients may need to wear special attachments that put pressure on certain areas of the teeth. Although these attachments are painless and harmless, they may stand out quite a bit. If you’re conscious about your appearance you might be uncomfortable with having visible attachments on your teeth.
3. It's Pricey
Price isn’t exactly an advantage of Invisalign treatments. You may have trouble paying for treatments and check-ups if you’re strapped for cash or if your insurance plan doesn’t cover Invisalign. Since Invisalign is a more modern treatment option, it may also be hard for people living in certain countries and regions to find dentists who are able to properly install and maintain Invisalign trays. The ones who do possess the skill and know-how needed to keep up a proper Invisalign treatment plan may end up charging quite a bit for their services. Unless you’re willing to dig deep into your savings or switch to a more flexible insurance plan, you might want to reconsider getting Invisalign trays.
4. It Comes With Some Discomfort
Invisalign trays apply pressure to move and shift teeth into the proper position. Expect to feel a bit of pain and discomfort while your teeth continually move around and adjust to new trays. If you don’t want to deal with the pain and discomfort of moving teeth, you can seek alternative treatments or use pain relievers while your teeth adjust.
5. You'll Need to Constantly Remove and Replace Trays
You’ll need to remove your clear tray aligners while eating, brushing, or using a mouthguard during sleep or sports. If you’re the forgetful type, this can result in you forgetting to wear your Invisalign trays as needed or even accidentally leaving the trays behind.
Invisalign treatment patients often have to replace their old trays with new ones that fit the shape of their teeth. Since every new tray applies a certain amount of pressure on the teeth, you’ll have to deal with some pain and discomfort every few weeks. You might want to consider braces or alternative treatments if you aren’t able to deal with constant removals or if you don’t want to deal with the risk of forgetting your clear aligner trays in a restaurant.
6. It Can’t Fix Severe Problems
Although Invisalign is a viable solution to crooked teeth, it may not be the best solution for anyone suffering from more serious oral health problems. Invisalign trays aren’t always able to move molars with deep tooth roots or fix very badly aligned bites.
It won’t be easy to make the most of your Invisalign trays if you suffer from severe tooth decay or gum problems. If your teeth are moving out of place due to swollen gums or the growth of new wisdom teeth, you may need to opt for other treatments instead of simply getting your fixed teeth with removable clear aligner trays.
Plaque and painful cavities can get in the way of proper orthodontic treatments. Your dentist might even need to take care of swollen gums and tooth decay for weeks before being able to fix any crooked teeth. Thankfully, you can avoid nasty and inconvenient oral health problems simply by using a great-quality dental calculus remover at home. Buy your own reliable dental calculus remover from our online store and enjoy stronger, whiter teeth in minutes!