What does a perfect smile tell you about a person’s oral health? Having straight and well-aligned pearly whites not only makes you look and feel good but also ensures your overall wellness. Sounds interesting, doesn’t it?
Most people are unaware of the fact that malocclusions or misaligned teeth often pave the way for other health issues. People with crooked or gapped teeth, overbite, underbite, and crossbite are more prone to plaque build-up and gum diseases. Malocclusions also reduce your ability to chew food properly, which in turn leads to digestive issues. Misalignment of the teeth also aggravates temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder and also triggers unexplained headaches.
So if you are a person who is suffering from any of these symptoms along with malocclusion, it is high time that you get your teeth straightened out. In a country that is home to expert dentists and several top dental clinics, getting treatment for your dental issues is a walk in the park.
However, people still shy away from orthodontic treatments due to the embarrassment of undergoing treatment and lack of knowledge about dental health and hygiene. Adults especially are wary of orthodontic treatments due to the fear of needing metallic braces to correct their malocclusions.
With the advancement of dental sciences, we now have clear aligner treatments, which provide a virtually invisible dental apparatus for correcting malocclusions. In this blog, we will explore more about invisible aligners and see if they are better than traditional metallic braces.
Orthodontics for everyone
The popularity of invisible aligners has encouraged more and more people to opt for teeth straightening, especially in the past decade. Today, dentists recommend clear aligner treatment for patients of all ages with mild to moderate malocclusions.
Before you sign up for clear aligners, it is important to learn about all your treatment options, including metallic braces. This will help you make an informed decision and ensure that invisible aligners are indeed the best option for your issue.
To help you understand the difference between traditional metallic braces and clear aligners, here is a general comparison-
Braces are traditionally made of metal and are attached to the outside of the teeth. There are mainly three parts to a brace- the metallic or ceramic brackets, the metal wire running through them, and rubber bands attached to the brackets to apply pressure and push the teeth into the correct position. The braces are semi-permanently attached to the teeth and only the orthodontist can manipulate them. During regular visits to the dental clinic, the dentist will tighten the braces to apply more pressure in the right direction to correct the malocclusion.
Invisible aligners on the other hand use transparent plastic aligner trays that are custom made to fit your teeth. Based on a digital scan of your teeth, the aligners are made to measure and can be slid over your teeth easily. The aligners are removable- however, they must be worn for a minimum of 20 to 22 hours daily for the treatment to work. The aligner trays change every 2 to 3 weeks, with each set slightly different from the previous one. The aligners apply constant pressure to the teeth, bringing them into the correct position during the treatment.
When it comes to comfort and ease of use, invisible aligners triumph over traditional braces.
Traditional metallic braces apply more pressure on the teeth, which makes your mouth feel sore during the treatment. The metallic part also rubs against the inside of the mouth, leading to injuries and ulcers. As the braces are fixed to the teeth, food particles tend to get stuck between them, increasing the chances of plaque development. To avoid this, you must brush your teeth thoroughly after every meal. During the treatment, you may also have to avoid certain hard foods like candies, popcorns, and such as it could damage the braces. The braces are not only uncomfortable to wear but are also highly unflattering.
Invisible aligners on the other hand apply gentle, consistent pressure on the teeth. As most aligner trays are smooth and trimmed to fit the teeth, it doesn’t rub against the other parts of the mouth and cause injuries. They are very discreet and comfortable to use.
As the aligners are easily removable, they can be removed and kept in their case during meal times. Also, there are no food restrictions to be followed while on invisible aligner treatment. However, ensure that you brush and floss your teeth thoroughly and wash your aligner trays in denture solution before popping them back in to avoid plaque buildup.
Both traditional metallic braces and invisible aligners are effective in treating malocclusions. As traditional braces apply more pressure on the teeth, the results can be seen quicker than with aligners. However, this doesn't mean that invisible aligners give slower results. Most clear aligner treatments last between 6 to 18 months, which is similar to that of traditional braces.
Generally, invisible aligners tend to be more expensive than braces. This is because of the cost of the premium materials and lab costs involved in making the custom aligner trays. It is to be noted that traditional braces can also cost more depending upon the complexity of the case. So ultimately it all comes down to the patient’s wishes.
Invisible aligners are a great choice for patients looking for a discrete and comfortable way to correct their malocclusion. Even so, invisible aligners may not always be the best treatment for all. Complex cases may require additional procedures or a short stint of metallic braces to get the best results. To know if you are an ideal candidate for clear aligner treatment, consult with an orthodontist at Emirates Dental clinic in Dubai today.