How Invisalign® Compares to Braces

How Invisalign® Compares to Braces
If you need orthodontic treatment, you may be wondering whether clear aligners or traditional braces are the right choice for you. Find out how Invisalign® works and learn the benefits of choosing this treatment over metal braces.

Do you want straighter teeth? Orthodontic treatment has come a long way over the years, and you now have more options than ever when it comes to achieving a picture-perfect smile.

You might be wondering if traditional braces or Invisalign® is a better option for you, and our team at Your Community Smile is here to help. Both treatments can effectively straighten your teeth, but there are distinct differences between the two.

Narjes Abtahi, DDS, specializes in Invisalign treatment in Lansdowne, Virginia. In this blog, we take a closer look at how Invisalign compares to braces — and how to decide which option is right for you.

Invisalign vs. traditional braces

While Invisalign and traditional braces both straighten teeth, they work in very different ways. The Invisalign system involves wearing a series of custom-made, transparent plastic trays on your teeth. You wear each set for a specific period of time, and they gradually shift your teeth into their proper position.

In contrast, traditional braces use metal brackets and wires attached to your teeth. Your orthodontist .periodically adjusts the wires to gradually straighten your teeth. 

The benefits of Invisalign

Both Invisalign and braces can achieve similar results, but many of our patients prefer Invisalign because it offers a number of benefits over braces.


Invisalign is a discreet way to straighten your teeth. In fact, the clear aligners are virtually invisible when you wear them. That means Invisalign has a significant advantage over traditional braces, which use very visible metal components that people see when you smile and talk.

Your aligners are made of a clear, BPA-free plastic that’s customized to fit your teeth precisely, providing a more discreet treatment option for teens and adults.


For many people, Invisalign is a much more convenient option than braces. Invisalign aligners are removable, so it’s easier to maintain good oral hygiene during treatment.

You can remove your aligners to eat, brush, and floss your teeth as you normally would, whereas traditional braces require extra care to ensure food particles don't get trapped in the brackets and wires.


Because Invisalign aligners are made from smooth plastic, they’re gentle on your mouth, gums, and lips. The rough metal brackets and wires on traditional braces can irritate your cheeks and tongue, making them quite uncomfortable.

Plus, traditional braces require periodic tightening, which can make your teeth and mouth sore.

Duration of treatment

On average, Invisalign treatment takes between 12 and 18 months. While the exact length of your treatment depends on your condition, Invisalign can take a lot less time compared to traditional braces. Braces may take up to two years or more.

Invisalign uses computer-aided design technology to map out the movement of your teeth to ensure more precise and efficient treatment.

How to decide between Invisalign and braces

An orthodontic consultation is the best way to determine which treatment is right for you. Both Invisalign and traditional braces have their benefits, and Dr. Abtahi can help you develop a customized treatment plan for your smile.

We do an oral exam to evaluate your teeth and then discuss the pros and cons of each treatment. Invisalign effectively corrects many mild to moderate orthodontic issues, including crooked teeth, gaps, and overcrowding. 

It’s important to consider your personality and your commitment to treatment, too. You must wear your aligners at least 22 hours a day for treatment to be effective. If you’re concerned that you’ll forget to wear your aligners consistently, or even lose them, Invisalign might not be the best choice for you.

Find out if you’re a good candidate for Invisalign with a consultation at Your Community Smile. Call our office at 703-565-2667 or request an appointment online now.

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