Many patients continuously question whether they should opt for clear dental aligners (henceforth referred to as aligners or dental aligners in this article) versus braces. Typically, this is a personal preference. However, it would help to know more about both dental aligners and braces, so you can make an informed choice. In this article, we’ll delve into the details of the differences between braces and aligners.
Braces are made of porcelain or metal. They are attached to your teeth. Also, rubber bands and metal wires provide a force that helps the teeth to move to their correct position. Clear dental aligners, however, are made of plastic. They fit your teeth perfectly, as they are custom made. Each aligner moves your teeth gradually and step by step into their correct position. Small amounts of composite resin are attached to various teeth. These help the aligner to grip the tooth so that it can move correctly.
Whichever appliance you choose, straight and healthy teeth come with several advantages. They make it easier to brush, chew and speak. Moreover, they give you a smile that will improve your confidence and your self-esteem.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Dental Aligners versus Braces
There are certain parameters that will determine whether you will opt for braces or dental aligners. The following is a brief comparison…
- Appearance and Visibility: If you opt for braces, these will be more visible than dental aligners. You can opt for tooth-coloured brackets or braces that go behind the teeth to make your braces less conspicuous. However, the rubber bands and wires will remain visible, though you can choose the colour of your rubber bands. If you opt for clear dental aligners, these are virtually invisible. They allow you to achieve that perfect smile in an inconspicuous manner. Aligners are designed in such a way that they minimize the appearance of an appliance. In this way, they can suit any lifestyle.
- Removability: Braces remain fixed to the teeth in order to achieve a stable and functional result. An advantage is that you cannot lose braces unless you eat hard and sticky foods. Aligners, however, are removable. You can take them out of your mouth to eat, brush, floss, for short periods for work, and for social occasions. However, you should keep them in your mouth and attached to your teeth for at least 22 hours a day and in the correct sequence. Due to the fact that they are removable, aligners can get easily lost or damaged.
- Comfort: There could be a period of initial discomfort and adjustment with braces. Braces can temporarily irritate mouth tissue due to the brackets and wires. However, this discomfort does not last long and can be easily managed. Once you get used to your braces, you may even forget that you have them over your teeth. Again, with aligners, there could be a brief period of initial discomfort but this discomfort can be easily managed. If your aligners or braces are uncomfortable for prolonged periods of time, do consult your dentist for a needed adjustment of both.
- Hygiene: With braces, you need to keep your teeth and gums free of food debris and plaque. If you do not do so, bacteria will attack your teeth and will cause inflamed gums. You should frequently brush and floss to remove food debris and plaque. The same applies to aligners. When aligners are placed in your mouth, your teeth need to be spotless.
- Diet: If you have braces, you need to steer clear of hard, sticky, and crunchy foods to avoid breaking a bracket. You also need to avoid carbonated drinks, flavoured waters, or sports drinks. These can contain acids and sugars both of which are bad for tooth enamel. With aligners, you need to avoid soft drinks, flavoured waters, and sports drinks of any kind. These liquids will seep into the aligners. If these drinks contain acids or sugars, or both, they will lead to staining of the teeth and extensive decay. If you have either braces or aligners, opt for drinking water instead.
While both braces and dental aligners are effective at straightening teeth, which one you choose will depend on your lifestyle and your personality. Effectiveness is an important parameter. Metal braces are more effective at adjusting teeth that are overcrowded within your mouth. Braces also cost less than dental aligners. Also, since they are attached to your teeth, you do not have to worry about losing them.
Whether you choose aligners or braces, you should consult with your dentist so that you can make an informed choice. Both braces and aligners have their pros and cons and their advantages and disadvantages. This is why it is imperative that you choose to consult with the right dentist who will advise you as to whether to opt for braces or aligners.
You can connect with, and find the right dentist at Vistadent, the Orthodontic Speciality Clinic, located in Hyderabad, India. We, at Vistadent, will work closely with you right from the first consult to determine which appliance to use to straighten your teeth and give you that perfect smile.
We will never hurry you or treat you as just another case. We boast the best appliances and instruments, which we will use appropriately to treat you in the best possible way. So, if you need braces or aligners, do visit Vistadent for the best possible dental experience!
For more information about braces and aligners, or any other dental procedures, as well as other dental problems, contact Vistadent, the Orthodontic Speciality Clinic, at 040-23388111 or +91 9866572482 or at email@example.com or visit our website at http://vistadent.net/.