When the time comes to take the plunge and begin the teeth-straightening process for your teen, you may be feeling as overwhelmed as you are excited. Ensuring that your child comes out of their orthodontic appliances with a healthy, beautiful smile is a big responsibility, but finding the right treatment plan for their lifestyle can make all the difference. Here are some tips to help you and your teen decide if traditional braces or Invisalign is the best option for them.
- Application: Metal brackets are glued to the teeth and cannot be removed, so they are worn 24/7.
- Appearance: While braces are not as discreet as Invisalign, there are options to make them more subtle, such as clear brackets, or more fun with colored bands.
- Maintenance: Braces are convenient in that you can brush and floss as you normally would without braces, but it’s important to avoid foods that could harm your brackets and wires, such as sticky, chewy, and hard foods.
- Pros: Traditional braces are beneficial for absent-minded teens who might forget to wear their appliances if they have the option to take them out. They are also usually a more effective option for complex alignment problems.
- Cons: Metal braces may not be the best option for teens who play contact sports. They also limit the foods that your teen will be able to eat, and might cause discomfort, particularly after they are adjusted.
- Application: Invisalign is comprised of clear aligner trays that are made from BPA-free plastic. They’re worn 22 hours a day, and are only taken out to eat or clean.
- Appearance: Because they’re clear, they’re much less noticeable than metal braces.
- Maintenance: You can brush and floss normally after removing your Invisalign trays, but your aligners must also be cleaned daily. Invisalign is a convenient option for eating because you can eat normally after removing your aligners.
- Pros: Patients love Invisalign because they are discreet, can be removed, and you never have to worry about brackets or wires breaking like with metal braces.
- Cons: Not wearing your aligners as often as directed could result in longer treatment times. Additionally, they can be easily misplaced if teens are prone to taking them out, and they may not be the most effective option for complex adjustment needs.
While both braces and Invisalign can help your teen achieve a straighter, healthier smile, considering your child’s unique needs will make sure that they have the smoothest orthodontic experience possible. For all of your family’s orthodontic needs, including choosing the best straightening plan for your teen, the trusted teams at myORTHODONTIST are here to help you every step of the way.