Clear braces are a great option for those who want the ideal treatment outcomes that braces can provide while not compromising on esthetics. Despite what you may read online, not every patient is a good candidate for Invisalign or other forms of clear aligners.
The term clear braces is a little bit of a misnomer - it might be more accurate to refer to them as "tooth-colored" braces.. Clear braces are an excellent alternative to traditional metal braces and clear aligners.
What is the difference between clear braces and clear aligners?
Clear braces have the same effectiveness as traditional metal braces except that they are tooth-colored. There is no significant difference in the speed or quality of tooth movement when comparing metal braces and clear braces.
Clear aligners are in a different category than clear braces. Clear aligners like Invisalign or Clear Correct are pieces of clear plastic that fit over your teeth and are removable. Invisalign and other forms of clear aligners can be an excellent option for patients requiring more minor tooth movements or whose circumstances require a removable appliance.
What are the advantages and disadvantages to clear braces?
As with most important decisions, there are pros and cons to each treatment option available to patients seeking to improve their smile. It is important that patients consider not just the whether or not their teeth will be straight after treatment, but also how healthy they will be and how well they will fit together (your bite). Dr. Budd can help you determine whether clear braces, metal braces, or Invisalign clear aligners would be your best treatment option.
Advantages to clear braces:
- Appearance: Clear braces or "tooth-colored" braces are made of a ceramic material and are more esthetic than metal braces. They offer excellent treatment results while minimizing any compromise on esthetics during treatment.
- Confidence: Adult patients who are concerned about looking like a "teenager" during treatment, have found they can achieve the change in their smile they are hoping for while maintaining their confidence during the treatment process. Adult orthodontics is actually one of the fastest growing segments of orthodontics and many adult patients choose clear braces as their preferred option.
- Predicability: Many patients struggle to decide between clear aligners and clear braces. One advantage of clear braces over clear aligners is that the clear braces are connected to your teeth and are not removable. This means that they are always working and tend to reach the intended treatment goal in a shorter amount of time due a faster rate of tooth movement. The rate of tooth movement is determined by the constancy of force applied to the teeth - the more constant the force - the faster the movement. Our most common challenge with clear aligners is patients forgetting to wear their removable aligners which can result in less predictable treatment.
Disadvantages to clear braces:
- Cost: Clear braces cost slightly more than traditional metal braces although the difference between the two is minimal. Budd Orthodontics offers convenient payment plans to make treatment affordable for alll our patients. We would be happy to discuss our financial payment options with you.
- Discoloration: The clear elastic ties used to secure clear braces in place can become slightly discolored when you drink tea, coffee or wine or eat certain foods like curry or from smoking. Each time you come to our office for an appointment, we will place brand new clear ties on your braces to minimize any staining over time. The braces themselves do not stain.
Are clear braces the right choice for me?
Dr. Budd can review all the options available to you for your orthodontic treatment including clear braces, metal braces, and Invisalign clear aligners. Please give our office a call today to schedule an appointment and we would be happy to help you decide the best way to achieve a beautiful smile.