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Straightening Your Teeth Discreetly: Invisalign Vs. Clear Braces

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Everyone wants perfectly straight teeth, but crooked teeth are one of the most common dental problems. In the past, traditional bulky metal braces were the only solution to correct misaligned teeth. However, thanks to advancements in cosmetic dentistry, there are many invisible options, allowing you to fix your teeth without feeling self-conscious. Check out the difference between two of the most common invisible options: Invisalign and clear ceramic braces.

Ease of Cleaning

Cleaning your teeth is especially important when you have braces because trapped food can cause serious decay and damage. Invisalign makes cleaning your teeth much easier than clear braces because Invisalign can be removed. In fact, you are required to remove the trays when you eat. Because there are no wires or brackets, less food gets trapped, and flossing and brushing after eating is much easier because there is nothing to hinder your progress.


If you have mildly to moderately crooked teeth, Invisalign is quite effective. However, clear braces offer more effective results because they work just like traditional braces. If your teeth are severely crooked or rotated, clear braces are the best choice. If you struggle with teeth that have different heights and need to move your teeth vertically, Invisalign is also a poor option. Lastly, if your back teeth have a misaligned bite, you should choose clear braces. Another problem with the effectiveness of Invisalign is due to its removability. Patients who lack the discipline to keep the aligners in at all times (except when eating and cleaning) get poor results.

Invisibility Factor

Invisalign is a clear plastic aligner. The entire aligner fits over your teeth, covering them completely. Clear braces are made from wires and brackets. The wire is usually thin and the brackets are clear. In some cases, you may even be able to choose a clear alternative for the wire. As a result, Invisalign does a better job of hiding the fact you have braces. Clear braces are less noticeable than traditional braces, but they are not completely invisible, so you may struggle with more embarrassment. Plus, if you fail to properly clean the brackets, they can become stained, making them more noticeable.


Neither option is completely comfortable because they are designed to physically move your teeth, which is painful. However, Invisalign tends to be more comfortable than clear braces because they are smooth, causing less irritation to the inside of your mouth. Clear braces have wires and brackets, which stick out, irritating the inside of your cheeks and lips. If the pain becomes too much with Invisalign, you always have the option to remove the aligners for a short time, but remember, that affects their effectiveness.

Treatment Time

No treatment to correct crooked teeth is instantaneous, and any kind of braces takes time to slowly reposition your teeth. Invisalign tends to have a shorter treatment process. Many patients get the smile they want in less than a year. You will have to go into the office more often, however, to get your new aligners every few weeks. Like traditional metal braces, clear braces tend to take a few years to completely adjust your teeth. However, the ceramic used to make clear braces is more fragile than metal, so the dentist may use less drastic force when tightening the braces. When considering treatment time, however, keep in mind that Invisalign is designed to treat less severe problems, which require less time to fix anyway.

Whether Invisalign or clear braces is the right answer depends on the severity of your tooth alignment problems and your preferences. Both, however, take time, have some level of discomfort and are less noticeable than traditional braces. For more information about braces, contact an orthodontist in your area today.