Orthodontics: Figuring Out When to Choose Braces Over Aligners

Orthodontics Benicia, CA

When it comes to orthodontics, clear aligners and braces are two options that your dentist might recommend. These are the most commonly used orthodontic devices, and both are effective at addressing a wide range of misalignment issues, like:

  • Crooked teeth
  • Underbites
  • Spaces between teeth
  • Overbites
  • Overjets
  • Crossbites

Teeth alignment issues should never be ignored, because they can cause more damage than simply ruining the way that the teeth look. Misaligned teeth can be more vulnerable to tooth decay and gum disease, the top two reasons that people need a dentist. Tooth decay damages teeth structures and leaves their pulp vulnerable to infection. Gum disease destroys bone structures and gum tissues that anchor teeth. It can lead to teeth falling out of their sockets.

Choosing between braces or clear aligners for orthodontics

Let us take a closer look at the two most popular devices used for orthodontics and their key differences.

1. Braces

Metal braces have been around for longer than clear aligners. For over a century, braces were the main way to straighten teeth. They are still the most effective way to straighten teeth because braces can be used to treat severe teeth misalignment caused by the placement of a person’s jaw, while clear aligners cannot.

The two main components of metal braces are the brackets and wires. A bracket is attached to each of the patient’s teeth, and wires connect every bracket on each dental arch. These wires are tightened to apply a pushing force on the wearer’s teeth via the brackets.

Many people who need teeth straightening treatments avoid them simply because they do not want to deal with having a mouth full of metal. More attractive versions of braces have been developed for those who are not fans of metal braces.

Ceramic braces are not much different from metal braces. The metal components are simply swapped with less conspicuous alternatives, like tooth-colored brackets and transparent wires. The benefits of wearing braces include:

  • Impossible to lose the device
  • Tackles severe misalignment
  • Great for people who might not be able to remember to wear clear aligners 20 hours daily

The downsides of braces include:

  • Can make teeth vulnerable to decay
  • May force the wearer to avoid foods that can get stuck in the wires and brackets
  • Not as comfortable as clear aligners
  • More visible than clear aligners

2. Clear aligners

These are removable trays that push teeth to a better alignment. Treatment involves wearing sets of aligner trays for two-week periods until the targeted alignment has been reached. The benefits of clear aligners include:

  • Removable for meals and dental hygiene
  • More comfortable
  • Almost impossible to notice

The drawbacks of clear aligners include:

  • Requires more commitment on the patient’s part for effective treatment
  • Cannot fix severe misalignment caused by abnormal jaw positioning

Get straighter teeth

Ready for a straighter smile that you can be proud of? Call or visit us at our Benicia clinic to schedule an orthodontics consultation with our dentist.

Request an appointment here: https://beniciadentist.com or call Southampton Dental Care at (707) 887-5075 for an appointment in our Benicia office.

Check out what others are saying about our dental services on Yelp: Orthodontics in Benicia, CA.

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