Invisalign vs braces

Invisalign vs. Braces: Which Is More Effective?

Wondering if it is better to get braces or Invisalign to straighten your teeth? This guide to Invisalign vs. braces from Lifetime Family Dental can help. We’ve compared the pros, cons, effectiveness, cost, and length of treatment for each treatment so you can make an informed decision about your smile makeover. 

Pros and Cons of Invisalign


More Comfortable

Invisalign treatment uses a series of custom aligners called trays to gradually shift your teeth. Because they are made to fit your mouth, the only discomfort you might experience with Invisalign aligners is when you transition to a new set of trays. This soreness only lasts a few days while your teeth adjust. The rest of the time, Invisalign trays are quite comfortable to wear.

Won’t Affect Your Diet

One major benefit of Invisalign is that you don’t have to say goodbye to any foods during your treatment. To avoid damaging your trays, simply remove them before you eat or drink anything. The only beverage you can drink while wearing your trays is water, because it won’t cause any damage or leave any stains. 

Virtually Invisible

Invisalign clear aligners are discreet and virtually invisible on your teeth. No one will even notice that you’re wearing them. You might speak with a slight lisp at first, but that’s only because your mouth will need time to get used to talking while the trays are in. You will likely be able to speak naturally while wearing your clear aligners after just a few weeks. 


They Can Only Correct Mild Cases

If you have a mild case of misaligned bite, tooth crowding, or gapped teeth, then Invisalign treatment could be right for you. However, more severe cases of these dental issues will require braces. 

Must Be Worn All Day

You must wear your clear aligners for at least 20 to 22 hours each day, which requires strict self-discipline. If you think you may be tempted to remove them for long periods of time or that you may forget to put them back in after eating, braces might be a better choice for you. Failing to wear your Invisalign trays for long enough will only prolong your treatment schedule. 

May Require Attachments

In some cases, Invisalign attachments are required to help with the tooth repositioning process. These attachments, which are sometimes called “buttons,” can make your clear aligners more noticeable. 

Pros and Cons of Braces


You Can’t Remove Them

You don’t have to worry about remembering to wear braces—they are worn at all times and can only be removed professionally. Although you can eat and drink freely while wearing braces, you will have to adjust your diet to avoid damaging them. 

Can Correct Complex Cases

If you have severe dental alignment issues, you might not be a good candidate for Invisalign. Braces, however, can fix both minor and major cases of tooth crowding, gapped teeth, and bite problems. 


Limit Your Diet

There are many foods you must avoid when you have braces. Anything crunchy, hard, sticky, or chewy can cause your braces to break. Broken braces not only prolong treatment but can also cause damage to your mouth. 


Braces may irritate the inside of your mouth where the brackets meet the insides of your cheeks and lips. Having your braces tightened can also leave your mouth feeling especially sore for a few days after an appointment. 

Invisalign vs. Braces: Which Is Faster?

Invisalign treatment is typically faster than braces. The average length of treatment for braces is 18 to 24 months, while for Invisalign it is around 12 months. However, if your dental correction needs are more complex, Invisalign treatment can take longer. 

Invisalign vs. Braces: Cost

The ultimate cost of your treatment with either braces or Invisalign will depend on the complexity of your case. In general, Invisalign and braces cost around the same amount. Keep in mind that treatment delays, lost or damaged aligners, and broken braces will increase the cost. 

Invisalign vs. Braces: Effectiveness

Invisalign and braces are equally effective methods of correcting dental problems. Whether or not one method is more effective for you will depend on the level of corrections you require. Invisalign trays are very effective at resolving minor issues, but not as effective as braces for treating severe issues.

Invisalign Treatment in Gilbert, Arizona

Has comparing the pros and cons of Invisalign vs. braces helped you come to a decision? If you believe Invisalign is right for you, contact the dental professionals at Lifetime Family Dental. As experts in cosmetic dentistry, we offer Invisalign treatments with stunning, effective results. Give us a call at 480-558-4331 to discuss aligning your teeth today. 

Images used under creative commons license – commercial use (3/29/2022). Photo by Jose G. Ortega Castro on Unsplash