Crooked or gapped teeth can make you feel self-conscious and can negatively affect your oral health. Orthodontic devices such as metal or invisible braces can help you achieve a beautiful straight smile. If you are considering clear braces vs. metal braces, learn about the differences and which option is right for you.
What are Metal Braces?
Metal braces are the traditional style of braces and use tooth cement, metal brackets and a combination of metal wires and rubber bands to gradually pull and push the teeth into alignment. Unfortunately, this structure makes metal braces easily noticeable, which can disrupt your work and social life, or cause you to feel less self-confident.
This traditional method has been used for many years and still may be the best recommendation for certain situations. However, the appearance and sometimes complicated and less accommodating use can be the deciding factor with clear braces vs. metal braces. Patients with metal braces often have to be careful of the foods they eat so that the braces are not damaged or displaced.
The more modern styles of traditional metal braces are sometimes smaller and comfortable. Some even come in different colours allowing kids to express their personal style.
What are Clear Braces?
Clear braces are also known as clear aligners. Clear braces are non-toxic plastic trays that are custom fitted to your mouth. Each individual tooth cell in the clear braces tray applies gentle pressure to the tooth encouraging them to conform to the shape of the tray. Over the course of treatment, you are given a series of trays which are changed every 1-2 weeks and gradually guide your teeth into proper alignment.
To begin with, your teeth will be examined and scanned using 3D scanning software.
The software creates a mockup of how your teeth will move over time and your dentist will plot the course of your teeth.
The digital images are then sent to an off-site lab to develop a series of personalised trays.
What are the Benefits of Clear Braces vs Metal Braces?
Beyond giving you a set of beautiful straight teeth, there is a huge range of benefits to wearing clear braces vs. metal braces.
Clear invisible braces are less noticeable than metal braces making them perfect for adults who want a discrete teeth straightening option suitable to wear at work, or for teens who may feel self-conscious wearing metal braces.
The materials used in metal braces can potentially scratch or tear the soft tissue in your mouth, causing discomfort. Invisible braces are made from clear, smooth plastic that won’t irritate cheeks or get caught on lips. They are also form-fitted to your teeth to avoid gum irritation.
Compared with metal braces which typically take between 18-24 months to straighten your teeth, clear braces can take less than 12 months to achieve your desired results depending on the severity and complexity of your orthodontic issues.
Food particles can easily become stuck in metal brackets and wires, which means that you need to modify your diet and your oral hygiene techniques to avoid tooth decay and discolouration. However, clear invisible braces only need to be worn for a minimum of 20 hours per day. This means that you can remove the clear aligner trays before eating and brushing.
However, it is important to remember that the longer you wear your clear braces, the more effective they will be. So, you must remember to always place your aligner trays back in your mouth after eating and brushing.
Easy to Clean
Clear braces are easy to clean to keep your teeth and gums healthy and your trays in pristine condition. There are many natural ways that you can use to clean your clear aligner trays at home, as well as commercial cleaning solution specifically formulated for cleaning clear aligners.
Clear braces are an effective, discreet and convenient alternative to metal braces for straightening crooked or gapped teeth. They have a huge number of benefits that make them the clear teeth straightening choice.
When it comes to deciding between clear braces vs. metal braces, the best option is to talk with your dentist. The professionals at Scott Street Dental have the expertise and knowledge to advise you on the correct method to use to straighten your teeth.
Contact us today on (02) 9158 6393 to talk to our experienced and friendly staff about our teeth straightening options and let us help you achieve a beautiful smile.