There are various types of braces available that can cater to your specific requirements and personal taste. Our dentists at Belleville have compared traditional braces, clear braces, and clear aligners to help you make an informed decision.
Clear Braces vs. Traditional Braces vs. Clear Aligners
When exploring ways to straighten your teeth, you'll likely encounter two common options: traditional braces and clear aligners. However, clear braces offer a third, appealing alternative that falls somewhere in between. To help you choose between these three options, let's compare the benefits and drawbacks of each. Keep in mind that your dentist can provide guidance on which approach is best for you.
When it comes to braces, traditional metal braces are usually the most familiar option for most people. Although they can be quite noticeable when worn, advancements in orthodontic technology have made wires and brackets smaller in size. These braces are the preferred choice for individuals with complex orthodontic issues, and can be customized with different colored elastic bands or more subtle tooth-colored ones.
Clear aligners, like Invisalign, are orthodontic appliances that straighten teeth without using metal and wires, making them almost invisible when worn. These removable aligners allow you to eat whatever you want, unlike braces that require you to be mindful of your diet. Braces cannot be removed, and sticky or hard foods can get stuck in them.
With clear aligners, it is essential to only drink water while wearing them, but you can take them out when eating or drinking other beverages. Before putting aligners back in, it is crucial to brush and floss to prevent food particles and bacteria from getting stuck between your teeth and the aligners.
Cleaning solutions or warm water can be used to clean clear aligners, while braces require regular brushing and flossing. Clear braces are a good alternative for those who are not suitable for clear aligners.
Clear braces are an effective alternative to traditional metal braces for straightening teeth. These ceramic braces use wires and brackets to gradually move teeth into their new positions, just like their metal counterparts. However, the ceramic brackets are less noticeable than metal ones as they match the color of tooth enamel more closely. In addition, it's possible to match the wires to the color of your teeth, further enhancing the natural appearance of clear braces.
How should I care for clear braces and metal braces?
When undergoing orthodontic treatment, whether you opt for metal or clear braces, it is crucial to maintain excellent dental hygiene. This is because food particles and plaque can easily get trapped in the wires and brackets, making brushing and flossing more important than ever before to prevent cavities and gingivitis.
Which foods should I avoid?
When wearing either clear braces or traditional metal ones, it's important to avoid consuming sticky foods such as candy, popcorn, caramel, and apples as they have the potential to displace or damage the metal. Delicious as they may be, it's best to resist the temptation.
Do clear braces stain?
If you choose clear braces, you'll want to be careful with which foods and drink you consume, as the brackets on clear braces can become more easily stained than on metal braces. Avoid dark-coloured foods and drinks like cola and blueberries.
What about cost?
Clear braces could be an ideal choice for individuals who are not suitable for clear aligners. Financially, ceramic braces fall in between traditional metal braces and clear aligners. Metal braces are the most economical option, whereas clear aligners are slightly more expensive than the average cost of braces. However, the cost of treatment ultimately depends on the complexity and severity of your orthodontic condition.
How long will I have to wear braces?
If you're uncertain about having the self-discipline required for removable clear aligners, the fact that braces are not removable could be an advantage. The duration of treatment time for both metal and clear braces is similar, ranging from 1 to 3 years depending on the dental issues of the patient.