Are you thinking of getting braces? Not too keen on the idea of wearing metal brackets? The good news is there are many options available if you’re interested in achieving that great smile. You can choose from the traditional metal braces to the cosmetically-friendly Invisalign, depending on what your needs are.
The traditional metal brackets are what most people think of when they hear “braces.” This is going to be for people with very crooked teeth or a major bite problem. Updated technology allows teeth to move more quickly than in the past, thereby lessening the time you have to wear the braces. Metal braces are the least expensive option but are the most noticeable.
These braces have clear plastic or tooth-colored ceramic brackets attached to the wires. This alternative is less noticeable than metal braces but may cost more. Clear braces are more prone to staining from smoking or dark drinks like coffee. Total treatment time may also take longer than with metal braces since teeth do not move as quickly.
Lingual braces use metal wires and brackets but are positioned behind the teeth, making them invisible to the outside. This is a considerable option if your profession requires you to frequently present in front of audiences. They tend to be more expensive, difficult to clean, and not for people with severely crooked teeth.
The last option involves wearing clear plastic aligners over your teeth for the optimal time of 22 hours a day. You change aligners every 2 weeks and can remove them when eating and drinking. There are no food or drink restrictions with Invisalign and is available to teens and adults only. This will be an expensive choice with the national average cost at $5000.
I personally decided to use Invisalign to fix my over-crowded teeth since I wasn’t fond of wearing brackets or wires. My treatment time will total 17 months, and I have to go in every six weeks to check progress and pick up the next set of aligners. The cost is very close to the national average, though my dental insurance did pick up part of the expense. From my own experience, I really enjoy the freedom to remove the aligners for meals and special occasions where pictures will be taken. The biggest downside is the cost as the total out-of-pocket expenses are typically more than with traditional braces.