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Do clear braces like Invisalign® work as well as metal braces?

Metal braces and clear Invisalign® aligners are both effective methods of orthodontic treatment. Our Langley orthodontists discuss how these two kinds of orthodontic treatments are different as well as provide you with advice on how you can pick the best one for you. 

Metal Braces

Metal braces are recommended for people that are more concerned about function than style or aesthetics.

Metal braces are very efficient at helping correct complex misalignment problems, and are great for closing gaps and aligning teeth.

Treatments with metal braces could take anywhere from 18 months to 3 years, however, there is generally noticeable tooth movement within a relatively short timeframe.


The two main benefits of Invisalign® are that the aligners are clear and can be removed, and are nearly impossible to see when worn.

Lots of people also find that Invisalign®’s smooth plastic aligners are more comfortable than traditional metal braces because they don’t irritate the gums or cheeks the same way metal brackets and wires can.

The average length of Invisalign® treatment is somewhere between 6 and 18 months, however, this generally varies from case to case.

This shorter treatment duration range, as compared to metal braces, is mainly a result of the fact that Invisalign® is typically used to treat less complex or severe misalignment issues, as it’s considered a more gentle, less invasive option.

And of course, it is also based on the assumption that the patient will stick to the recommended guidelines for aligner wear, and wear their aligners at least 20-22 hours every single day, throughout treatment.

If a patient wears the aligners less often than prescribed, or for shorter durations every day, treatment time could end up taking much longer.

Both braces and Invisalign® are effective options for straightening teeth, and the treatment you end up choosing will depend on your personal preferences balanced with the severity and complexity of your misalignment.

To find out if Invisalign® or metal braces are an option for you contact our Langley orthodontists to make an appointment.

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