Invisalign vs Braces: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly!


Invisalign vs braces … In recent years dentistry has undergone something of a revolution as new and improved technology continues to expand and alter the field of dentistry in numerous innovative ways. Although this new high tech approach to dentistry has proven its overall effectiveness in providing patients nationwide with improved dental care. However, there are still numerous orthodontists and dental practitioners use many of the same basic but effective methods of the trade that they have been using for many years.

One such practice that has become something of a time-honored tradition among teens and young adults is braces. However like many of traditional dental and orthodontic practices, the recent arrival of the new cutting edge Invisalign technology now stands as a sleek new alternative that has given the previously unchallenged traditional braces a run for their money!  So the showdown of Invisalign vs Braces continues … will you choose technology over tradition like so many others?

Invisalign vs Braces … Braces:

Traditional dental braces as you probably already know have been used to straighten and realign the teeth of patients for decades, and though clunky and sometimes cumbersome they continue to prove themselves as an effective solution for many patients across the globe.

Braces | Pros:

Although sometimes considered unsightly and even a bit painful, there are certain advantages for patients receiving standard dental braces. Perhaps one of the main advantages of traditional braces is their ability to adjust the alignment of a patient’s jaw.  This can be seen in those who have or have previously suffered from an overbite, underbite, or even a crossbite. Usually standard metal wire braces are employed to correct these types of issues. Another and perhaps less obvious advantage to traditional braces is simply their stationary nature. Although this often depends on the personal preference of the given patient, there have been a few instances in which removable Invisalign aligners have been misplaced and ultimately have been lost. While such occurrences are seldom and the aligners can certainly be replaced, obviously users of traditional braces have no such issue as the devices cannot be removed unless done so by a professional orthodontist.

Braces | Cons:

While strong and effective, traditional braces have unfortunately been known to be in some instances unsightly, and at times even painful for the user. Routine tightening appointments, cleanings, or other maintenance seem to be common pitfalls of classic dental braces. While this may be no big deal for some, finding time to make those monthly appointments can be a bit of a challenge for others. Another less than favorable aspect of life with braces is the often tedious process of brushing and keeping your braces clean. Due the unevenness and bulk of traditional dental braces, many patients find themselves struggling to keep all areas surrounding the teeth clean, as the braces may limit access to teeth. As a result of this, patients with standard braces may find excessive buildup of plaque and other substances in the inaccessible areas which if left for too long, may result in cavities or other damage.

Invisalign vs Braces … Invisalign:

While the term Invisalign might still be somewhat unfamiliar to those outside the dental profession, in recent years Invisalign has slowly but surely becoming synonymous with cosmetic dentistry. As these clear, custom-fitted dental aligners have become increasingly popular among both dental practitioners and patients alike.

Invisalign | Pros:

The recent rise in popularity of Invisalign technology is due in no small part to the numerous practical and cosmetic benefits that Invisalign offers as opposed to standard braces. While praise for the Invisalign aligners varies from person to person, perhaps one of the highest praised aspects among patients past and present are the quick and effective results produced by Invisalign. Due to the frequency in which the temporary Invisalign aligners must be replaced, (each aligner must be discarded and replaced with a new one every two weeks) the process it takes to ultimately straighten a patient’s teeth is exponentially shorter, as it often ranges anywhere from 6 to 18 months. While the quick results are highly regarded among users of Invisalign, another distinct advantage experienced by the user is the quick and easy access while practicing dental hygiene. As mentioned in the previous section, the bulk and uneven spacing of the standard braces can cause difficulty when brushing and cleaning your teeth. However due to the Invisalign aligners being easily removable, not only will you be able to easily clean your teeth,  but will also allow you to eat and enjoy certain foods that may be difficult to chew with braces. A third and particularly comforting feature of Invisalign is the overall pain-free experience by the patient when using them. As mentioned previously, traditional dental braces require occasional tightening and adjustments. However with Invisalign’s soft but flexible custom fitted aligners, all pain (if any) experienced by the patient is reduced greatly, providing them with a much more pleasant overall experience.

Invisalign | Cons:

While issues with Invisalign aligners rarely occur, the occasional loss of an aligner has been experienced by patients in the past, and if one is not careful, this can be a problem. While the clear material of the aligner does certainly prove itself to be aesthetically beneficial, (as it generally cannot be seen when in use) this may also make it difficult to see when not in use, making it easier to misplace. Although never an issue in the past, it could also be said that Invisalign is less effective than traditional braces when realigning a patient’s jaw. While this may be true, it should also be noted that in certain cases jaw alignment is the sole purpose for having dental braces, as opposed to actually correcting teeth.

Related Article: Achieve a Perfect Smile with an Invisalign Dentist

Invisalign vs Braces: What’s right for you?

By comparing these two options: Invisalign vs braces, you can clearly see a distinct difference in how Invisalign technology and classic dental braces can alter and ultimately benefit your smile. While we hope the information provided may be useful, if you’re trying to decide which option is right for you, you should schedule an appointment with Dr. Charles R. Kimes at Overland Park Dentistry, as he has been perfecting the art of a beautiful smile with Invisalign for years. Remember whether you’re taking the classic approach and receiving braces, or investing in the revolutionary new Invisalign aligners, you are taking a great step in achieving a flawless smile. Which is something that no matter the approach is truly timeless!

Dr. Charles R. Kimes, DDS and his expert team at Overland Park Dentistry look forward to having the opportunity to upgrade your smile with Invisalign! Or with any preventativerestorative or cosmetic needs you or your family may have. To schedule a dental appointment, contact us at our south Overland Park office at (913) 647-8700 or our north Overland Park office at (913) 341-2380.

Overland Park Dentistry
Even though going to the dentist is one of my least favorite things to do, my experience with Dr. Kimes have always been good. They are both very kind and considerate and try to treat you as painlessly as possible.