Clear Aligners vs. Braces
League City, TX
If you have a smile that is a little bit more crooked than you would prefer, then most likely you have been considering your options for orthodontic treatment. Two of the more popular choices that we like to offer to our patients here at Tieken Smiles Dentistry include traditional braces and Clear Aligners. While both have their unique advantages, the bottom line is that you need to choose what is best for you and your own dental needs. Getting orthodontic work done is a big step for you and making an informed choice can help you be happier and more satisfied with your results.
What is the Difference Between Clear Aligners and Traditional Braces?
Depending on your own needs, you may be a better candidate for either clear aligners or traditional braces. While there is no blanket statement that we can make that says one type of treatment option is entirely superior to another, there may be advantages to choosing one option instead of the other. Ultimately, the choice is yours, provided that you are a good candidate for your chosen procedure.
Traditional braces have been in common use since the 1970s, though orthodontic treatment certainly does predate this. They are made of two major parts. The first part is the metal bracket, which is directly attached to the surface of your tooth using a special type of dental adhesive. The other main components of the traditional dental brace are the wires, which run from bracket to bracket. When we adjust your teeth using traditional braces, we will tighten these wires to coax your teeth into place.
Patients who have more severe malocclusion – problems with their bite and jaw alignment – may be better candidates for traditional dental braces. Having a jutting jaw, a severe overbite, an open bite, a crossbite, or an underbite may require treatment from traditional metal braces.
On the other hand, clear aligners are a great option for patients who may have milder malocclusion. In addition to malocclusion, clear aligners are also a fantastic choice if you have uneven spaces between your teeth, a large visible gap between your front teeth, and overcrowded teeth. They are extremely discreet and subtle, making it a good choice for professionals or anyone who may be self-conscious about their appearance while they undergo orthodontic treatment.
Unlike traditional braces, which do require extra care to keep clean, you can remove clear aligners for up to two hours per day. This is quite convenient, allowing you not only brush and floss with ease, but you also will not have to avoid your favorite foods when you use clear aligners.
Treatment time may vary between traditional braces and clear aligners. Patients who elect to use traditional braces may need to continue treatment for up to three years. Clear aligners can be significantly shorter in duration, and many patients finish their treatment in as little as a year to a year and a half. Clear aligners also require fewer appointments, and many patients report that they are much more comfortable in the mouth (leading to fewer nicks and abrasions on the lips and cheek) when compared to traditional braces.
If you are interested in learning more about traditional dental braces and clear aligners and would like to learn more about them, or you are ready to set up an appointment with us here at Tieken Smiles Dentistry for a consultation, please give us a call today at (281) 942-0444!