In this feature, we look at traditional wire and bracket dental braces vs Invisalign clear aligners.
Invisalign Teen: An Esthetic Orthodontic Solution
If your teen needs braces, he or she may just have a reason to smile. The newest addition to the Invisalign product family is designed specifically for teens. Like its clinically proven, FDA-approved predecessor for adults, Invisalign Teen is a series of custom-made, clear plastic aligners that provides a teeth-straightening alternative to more traditional metal braces.
It is designed to help teenagers maintain their self-esteem and self-confidence and accommodate their active lifestyles while they address their orthodontic needs.
Developed in collaboration with leading orthodontists who understand the treatment demands of teenagers, it combines the benefits of the Invisalign system with new features, such as a Blue Dot Wear Indicator that fades when the aligner becomes worn and is ready to be changed; Eruption Tabs to accommodate the growth of second molars; and other features to address clinical needs common to teens.
What's Involved in Treatment?
After consultation with a specially trained Invisalign dentist, pictures and impressions of the teeth are taken and digitized. Then, 3D technology is used to map tooth movements from the beginning to end of treatment, forming the basis for creating the customized aligners. On average, treatment takes approximately one year, but every patient's needs are different.
The near invisible Invisalign Teen aligners are custom-designed based on your treatment plan to perfectly fit your teeth. Aligners must be worn every day for between 20 and 22 hours, except for when eating, brushing, flossing, playing sports or attending special occasions.
The aligners are exchanged for a new set every two weeks (or when the Blue Dot Wear Indicator fades), and work continuously to straighten the teeth.
During treatment, teenagers can keep up their active lifestyle, play sports and smile during social activities. Traditional braces often carry a stigma of being unattractive and noticeable, leaving teens feeling self-conscious and afraid to smile.
What's more, traditional wire and bracket braces present challenges for proper brushing and flossing, contributing to food and plaque build-up in the mouth. Because Invisalign Teen aligners are easy to remove, they promote better oral hygiene, as well as a pain-free experience with less irritation to the gums and mouth.
Whereas traditional braces also can require emergency visits to the dentist to fix a broken bracket, Invisalign Teen provides six extra replacement aligners in case others are lost or misplaced.
What Does it Cost?
The cost for Invisalign Teen is approximately $5,000, which is about the same as the cost for traditional braces. However, treatment costs vary from patient to patient, and depending on geographic location.
Learn more about how an orthodontist differs from other other dentists.