Braces vs Invisalign: Timeline & Effectiveness

July 18, 2022

Braces and Invisalign are two excellent options for straightening teeth. But which one is the right choice for you or your child?

This article contrasts clear aligners and traditional braces for their treatment timeline and effectiveness. For more information about your specific case, consult with an experienced orthodontist.

Braces vs. Invisalign: Which Takes Less Time?

On average, Invisalign patients complete treatment faster than those wearing traditional braces. However, this does not necessarily mean that Invisalign works quicker.

Most Invisalign patients will achieve their desired results after 12 months of treatment. In contrast, the average timeline for braces is about 22 months. It is possible that Invisalign treatment could take less time than conventional braces.

However, every smile has different needs, and your exact timeline will depend on your individual treatment case. If you have a more complex case, braces may be the most efficient option for your teeth.

To find out which treatment option will take less time for you, contact an orthodontist who is experienced with both braces and Invisalign. They will examine your teeth to give you an estimate for both.

It is also worth noting that clear aligners must be worn for at least 22 hours per day. If you don’t remember to put them back in after eating and cleaning your teeth, there might be a delay in your treatment results.

In contrast, braces remain on the patient’s teeth for 24 hours per day – one cannot simply “forget” to wear them. Some patients may prefer this option because there is less risk involved.

To ensure that your treatment timeline is as short as possible, choose an orthodontist with technology that fits your lifestyle. For example, here at Somerville Orthodontics, we perform virtual check-ups to keep your treatment on track.

Braces vs. Invisalign: Which Is More Effective?

Braces and Invisalign are two treatments that can straighten teeth, close gaps, and correct overbites or underbites. They both have their own advantages, and one may be more effective than the other depending on your individual case.

Braces involve brackets that are attached to the teeth and fitted with wires. While this process is more invasive compared to Invisalign trays, the wire-and-bracket system allows the orthodontist to apply considerable force to the patient’s teeth.

In contrast, Invisalign involves plastic aligners that are custom fitted to your teeth. Invisalign doesn't require metal brackets, wires or elastics, so you can eat, drink and brush your teeth as usual. Another added benefit is the aesthetics: the aligners are clear and discreet, so you can flaunt your perfect smile without anyone ever noticing that you’re wearing them.

However, Invisalign trays are limited in how much force they apply to the patient’s teeth. While Invisalign is the perfect treatment for patients with minor orthodontic problems, research has shown that braces are much more effective at correcting severe orthodontic cases.

If you have a mild to moderate case of misalignment, you will likely have a choice between braces and Invisalign. However, if your case is more severe, your orthodontist may recommend braces as your most effective option.

The first step in establishing an effective treatment plan is visiting an orthodontist. They will examine your teeth, jaw, and bite to give you the best diagnosis of your condition.

At Somerville Orthodontics, we use an iTero Digital Scanner to take 3D impressions of your mouth. This ensures that our assessment is accurate, and it allows us to create a treatment plan that is a perfect fit for your needs.

Invisalign vs. Braces: Effectiveness for Overbite

If you’re worried about aesthetics or you think braces might cause too much discomfort, Invisalign is a less invasive option for treating an overbite. However, there are some cases in which braces will be more effective.

According to a study from 2017, Invisalign is an effective option for treating mild to moderate cases of overbite. But as the individual patient’s case becomes more complex, Invisalign becomes less effective. This is why an orthodontist may recommend braces to correct a severe case of overbite.

Ready to Learn More?

At our orthodontic practice in Somerville, Massachusetts, patients often ask us to compare braces and Invisalign for their timeline and effectiveness.

While this article provides a general overview of these topics, the answer is not always cut-and-dry. The best way to compare your options and make an informed decision is by consulting with an experienced orthodontist.

Ready to take the next step towards a brighter smile? Contact Somerville Orthodontics today for a free smile assessment!

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