One of the most common cosmetic dental advertisements targeted towards adults is for invisible braces. These devices claim to be convenient, almost imperceptible to the naked eye, and capable of correcting minor orthodontic problems such as crooked teeth or overbites. But are they right for you?
Invisible braces are a modern form of orthodontic treatment that utilizes clear plastic aligners instead of traditional metal and wires. These aligners are custom made to suit your teeth and apply consistent, gentle pressure to move the teeth into the desired position.
During a standard period of use, you can expect to wear a series of different aligners over a period of 6 to 18 months.
Older patients often choose to wear invisible braces because of the perceived cosmetic benefits as well as their enhanced comfort. Many are attracted to the idea of having no one realize they are wearing braces, which tend to be associated with youth and naivete. There also is no inconvenient metal in your mouth, which can be difficult to match with outfits or make look professional.
The other benefit of invisible braces is not having to deal with as much pain or discomfort as basic metal braces. For example, there are no brackets cutting into the sides of the mouth or the tongue. You also would not have to wear rubber bands or sit through uncomfortable wire tightening appointments.
Finally, the aligners can be removed as needed for easier cleaning. You will be able to floss your teeth and have to worry less about discoloring your teeth since you can eliminate dyes by thoroughly brushing without the aligners on.
However, before deciding whether or not invisible braces are right for you, you need to determine if you are a candidate for them. The simplest way is to visit your dentist, who can examine the exact shape and position of your teeth and determine whether the aligners will fit comfortably. In general, someone who has a moderate to severe overbite, under-bite, or malocclusion will not be able to wear invisible braces.