Most people, when hearing the word ‘braces’ will think about the classic ‘train tracks’ that many teenagers wear. I recall wearing these as a teenager, and so did most of my friends.
Straightening teeth as an adult does not need to be like those teenage years. Most adults can have straighter teeth using either Invisalign or Ceramic braces.
- Invisalign – this is a simple clear brace which can be removed by the patient daily to eat and clean. Each clear brace is called an aligner. Each aligner is worn for 2 weeks before being replaced by a ‘tighter’ aligner. The number of aligners required varies from 7 to 50, depending on the mount of tooth
- Ceramic brackets work in the same way as the teenage train tracks. However, instead of having metal silver brackets, these braces have ceramic brackets and therefore are sometimes called White braces. They require similar adjustment every 3-4 weeks and are worn at all times as they cannot be removed by the patient.
Both of these systems give similar results – straighter teeth! The major difference is that Invisalign is completely clear hence, can sometime be called invisible. The white braces are not totally clear and can be seen. Eating with braces on is not as comfortable as eating without any braces on – therefore, Invisalign is advantageous here as the clear aligners can be removed for eating.
Download my factsheet on orthodontic appliances for a more comprehensive guide on each system. Contact me on firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
- Dr Mohsin Patel