As a renowned orthodontic expert, Dr. George Georgaklis offers several different options to achieve a straighter and healthier smile. Like many patients, you may be wondering about Invisalign® vs. braces at our San Diego practice. Both treatment options can successfully treat a range of orthodontic issues. However, you may be more suited to one treatment over the other, depending on your health needs, personality, budget, and several additional factors. At your consultation, your La Jolla orthodontist will explain more about Invisalign® vs. braces, and he will help you select the right treatment for your needs.
How the Treatments Work
Modern metal braces have been used since the early 20th century, although they have certainly evolved over the last hundred years. If you receive metal braces, Dr. Georgaklis will attach brackets to each of your teeth. He will string a wire along your teeth, attaching the wire to each bracket with a rubber band, or O-ring. Over the course of your treatment, he will tighten the wire to gradually shift and straighten your teeth.
Invisalign® has only been around since the 1990’s, but it has rapidly transformed the face of modern orthodontics. If you select this option, Dr. Georgaklis will take impressions of your dental arch. Then technicians at an Invisalign® lab will create aligner trays to fit around your teeth. The trays will place a gentle pressure on your teeth. You will begin wearing a new tray about every two weeks. In approximately 12 to 18 months, you could have a dramatically straighter smile.
Candidates for Each Treatment
Both metal braces and Invisalign® can enhance the appearance of your smile. However, if you have particularly severe malocclusion, you may be better suited to traditional braces, since they will exert a more powerful force on your teeth. Metal braces can treat orthodontic issues, such as an overbite, underbite, or crossbite. They can also be a great choice to reduce bruxism or TMJ Disorder.
Additionally, your personality will have some bearing on your candidacy for Invisalign®. The aligners are removable, but you will only achieve optimal results when you wear them for 20 to 22 hours a day. Be honest with yourself. If you believe you may forget to wear your trays, traditional metal braces are probably a better choice.
Benefits of Invisalign
Presuming you are a good candidate for Invisalign®, there are a number of advantages unique to this treatment. The most obvious benefit is its subtlety. Invisalign® trays are clear and fit snugly around your teeth, making them virtually invisible, even at close distances. In addition, while metal brackets and wires can sometimes irritate your soft tissues, smooth Invisalign® aligners will cause very little discomfort for your lips and cheeks. The trays also exert a gentler force than metal braces. Finally, even though removable aligner trays require dedication and responsibility on your part, they also make things easier and more convenient. You can continue to enjoy a full range of foods, including those that are normally off limits to patients with braces. The trays will also allow you to brush and floss more thoroughly. Therefore, with Invisalign®, you will have a much lower risk of post-treatment decay and discoloration.
Schedule a Consultation
To learn more about braces vs. Invisalign, contact our La Jolla office today.