Metal/Ceramic Braces or Clear Aligner Therapy?

There are many treatment options available to orthodontists to address issues of crowding, spacing, “bad bites,” and misalignment of the teeth for teens and adults. These treatment options include, but are not limited to, metal braces, ceramic braces, and clearigners (Invisalign®/ 3M Clarity Aligners®) . The first step in deciding which option is best is to have an orthodontic evaluation by an orthodontic specialist. At the complimentary consultation, photos and 3D scans will be taken, and a customized treatment plan will be created that best suits an individual’s specific issues and desired results.

Not all treatment plans are the same, nor are all treatment options appropriate for all situations. One type of treatment is not necessarily better than another. The type of treatment recommended will be based on the goals of the treatment and the patient’s lifestyle needs. Most orthodontic corrections can be successfully treated with braces (metal or ceramic.) They are typically the “gold standard” for orthodontic treatment and involve brackets that are affixed to the teeth and by progressing through a series of wires. Braces are not removable by the patient and involve some food restrictions, avoiding very hard or gummy foods. Patients also need to take a little extra time with brushing and flossing to maintain proper oral hygiene. Patients will be seen every 6-8 weeks for adjustments to the braces.

Clear aligners (Invisalign®/ 3M Clarity Aligners®) move the teeth with a series of clear, removable plastic trays. They are nearly invisible. Many patients will require tooth-colored attachments on the teeth that the aligners “grab” onto. Aligners must be worn 22 hours a day to achieve the desired outcome, but they can be removed to brush and floss and to eat whatever foods the patient desires. Patients need to be diligent to not lose or damage the aligners when they are not being worn. We have a special Dental Monitoring® system that allows for “virtual appointments” while in clear aligner therapy, reducing the number of in-office appointments. This is a convenient option for college students, jobs that require travel, or anyone with a busy lifestyle.

A skilled orthodontist will help decide what type of orthodontic treatment is best for a patient’s individual needs. They can walk a patient through the pros and cons of each type of treatment and communicate which type of treatment is recommended. Some treatment types may take longer than others or may have limitations to how successful the treatment outcome may be. The skill of the orthodontist is more important than the type of treatment (braces vs. clear aligners) a patient chooses. Dr. Kelly Morgan is a Harvard-trained orthodontic specialist that has the skill and experience to help patients achieve the healthy beautiful smile they desire.

Morgan Orthodontics is known for its friendliness and professionalism, treating each patient like family with genuine care and understanding. We accommodate the busiest of schedules and offer a complimentary middle school limo service! Making our patients smile by offering excellent customer service, the latest technology, and the highest quality of care is just part of the Morgan Difference.

For more information, visit our Leesburg or Winchester office or call today.