Studies have shown that malocclusion, or misalignment of the teeth, is one of the most common dental issues. It can lead to cracked and chipped teeth and problems eating and speaking. Fortunately, two devices can help fix this issue: aligners and braces. Each one performs similar actions — they exert pressure on the teeth to pull them into the proper positioning over time. But some key differences between both devices may make them suitable for different patients. This article will provide an overview of aligners vs. braces and discuss their differences so you can decide which is right for you.
1. Aligners are nearly invisible
Aligners are transparent and molded to your teeth. Therefore, they are nearly invisible to the naked eye once you put them on. This can help you maintain your confidence when you’re out and about or while taking pictures. You can continue smiling without large braces visible as your aligners gradually align your teeth in the correct position.
2. Aligners are removable
Aligners are meant to be worn at least 22 hours per day, but you can remove them. This allows you to eat food and participate in activities like contact sports while protecting them from damage and debris. This also makes cleaning the device easier. Instead of cleaning them with a mirror, you can just pop the aligners out for better cleaning.
Since aligners are removable, this can also help you maintain better oral health. There’s less risk of extra food and other debris getting trapped in the aligners or hard-to-reach areas of your mouth. As a result, brushing and flossing can be more straightforward.
3. Aligners can be more comfortable
Braces occupy more space in the mouth. They can make it harder to speak properly, and the braces may rub against the lips or inside of the cheeks. Plus, braces can cause a few days of pain after each tightening.
Aligners are often more comfortable. They’re slimmer and occupy less space, so they won’t rub against other parts of the inside of your mouth. Plus, it can be easier to trim down the aligners if they dig into your gums. You may experience minor discomfort when switching to the next aligner, but it’s often not as bad as braces.
4. Aligner treatment time is shorter than braces
Braces generally take at least two years to complete treatment, and sometimes longer. They generally require monthly visits to adjust the braces as well. Clear aligners can take as little as six months to complete treatment, and you may only need to visit your provider once every six weeks. When you do have to visit, appointments may be shorter since the provider only needs to check on your treatment progress.
The bottom line
Braces have long been the main way to treat malocclusion and misalignment, but the benefits of clear aligners are compelling. They’re invisible and removable, making it easy to keep the device and your teeth clean and continue smiling confidently. Plus, aligners are often more comfortable and less painful, and treatment can take less time. Keep these benefits in mind when you’re considering aligners vs. braces for your treatment.
Name: Michael Bertini
Email: [email protected]
Job Title: Consultant
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