When Are Braces a Better Option Than Invisalign?

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smiling teen girl with traditional braces

Over the past few decades, the field of orthodontics has changed dramatically when it comes to the technology and techniques that orthodontists use on a daily basis. But, even among advancements like Invisalign and digital scanners, many patients’ best option is still traditional metal braces. Why is this the case? What would make braces a better fit for a patient instead of clear aligners? If you’re thinking about starting orthodontic treatment for either yourself or your child, read on to find out why braces might be the way to go.

Traditional Braces Can Handle More Complex Cases

While each tooth in your mouth has a unique shape and role it plays in your ability to eat and speak, they can largely be divided into two categories: anterior (front) and posterior (back) teeth. The anterior teeth are the ones you mostly see when you smile, and the posterior teeth are the big ones that allow you to thoroughly chew your food.

When it comes to fixing crowding, crookedness, and gaps in the anterior teeth, braces and Invisalign are both good options. But, if a patient has issues with the alignment of their posterior teeth, or overall bite problems like an overbite, underbite, crossbite, or open bite, then braces are better suited to address them. This is because braces are a little easier to adjust and allow the orthodontist to have better control over someone’s treatment, meaning they are more effective for trickier cases.

You Can’t Lose Braces

With Invisalign, a patient is able to take their trays off whenever they like. While this offers a lot of flexibility and freedom, it also can cause trays to become lost or broken. While this isn’t a big issue for most adults, it can easily become a prevalent problem for teens and children. If a teen tends to be forgetful, or if a child is too young to be responsible for their trays, then braces are a better choice simply because they are fixed in place. This means there is no possible way for them to “disappear” or be “forgotten.”

Insurance Coverage

While almost every dental insurance plan available today offers coverage for braces, the same can’t be said for Invisalign. Often, a plan will just cover braces, and the money is only available for patients aged 18 and under. Most orthodontic offices offer some form of financing to break up the cost of treatment, but in some cases, braces are a more affordable choice thanks to insurance.

For individuals and parents considering braces or Invisalign, they fortunately don’t have to make the choice by themselves. A quick consultation with an orthodontist can help point people in the right direction so they can make a confident decision and choose the treatment that is best for their health, their smile, and their budget.

About the Author

Dr. Jeffrey Shirck has been providing award-winning orthodontic care to patients of all ages in the Columbus area for over a decade.  An Elite Invisalign Provider since 2017, he is more than able to help people choose between clear aligners and braces to ensure they enjoy a fast, comfortable, and successful treatment. To learn what type of orthodontic care would be best for you or your child, we invite you to schedule a FREE in-person consultation by clicking here.