If you are mulling over the idea of getting braces to straighten your teeth, you may be hoping to get it over and done with as quickly as possible. However, if you have heard that Invisalign is faster than traditional braces, you might want to think again. Although Invisalign might be faster in some cases, many factors affect the speed of orthodontic treatment.
Therefore, don't assume that by getting Invisalign instead of traditional braces, your treatment will be faster. You should first consider the various factors involved with straightening teeth.
Braces and Invisalign Are Not Interchangeable
It is no secret that dental patients would rather straighten their teeth in as little time as possible. In fact, a recent survey showed that 74% of young patients and 54.2% of adults thought that orthodontic treatment should be completed in less than 12 months. However, teeth can be straightened in less than 12 months, sometimes in as little as 6 months.
Although traditional braces would win, if pitted against Invisalign in a race to straighten similarly-positioned teeth, the two techniques are generally not interchangeable. For instance, while traditional braces excel at severe cases of malocclusion, such as impacted maxillary canines, Invisalign is usually used to treat minor or moderate cases.
Faster Straightening, Longer Treatment Time
Each case is unique. This is what makes it so difficult to compare traditional braces and Invisalign in terms of their speed at moving teeth. However, although most dentists will tell you that traditional braces are faster at the small stuff, such as closing gaps and pulling teeth into proper alignment, overall treatment time may be longer.
A study that measured the overall treatment time of braces versus Invisalign, found that traditional braces required 5.5 more months of treatment time, 93.4 more minutes of chair time, and 7 more minutes of emergency chair time. However, once again, since braces treat more severe cases of malocclusion, it is difficult to pit the two against each other in terms of speed.
Time isn't the Only Factor
Before getting braces, you need to consider more than just time. For example, is appearance an issue for you? If so, Invisalign are almost invisible and will allow you to straighten your teeth discreetly. Moreover, although it is possible for Invisalign to straighten moderately crooked teeth, severe cases require braces.
Do not choose based on speed. Choose your orthodontic treatment based on effectiveness. That way, you can be sure the results are as you had envisaged before treatment began. If you're considering braces, speak with your orthodontist for more information about which options will work best for your situation.