Invisalign vs. Braces: What Are The Most Significant Differences?

Are you considering orthodontic treatment but need help deciding between Invisalign and braces? Before making your decision, it’s important to weigh the pros and cons of both options. This article examines the main differences between the two treatments and how they can affect your results.

Introduction To Invisalign and Braces

Invisalign is an alternative to traditional metal braces that uses clear, removable aligners to straighten teeth gradually. Invisalign is virtually invisible, so most people won’t even know you’re wearing them. Because they are removable, you can also eat and drink whatever you want while wearing them and brush and floss normally to maintain good oral hygiene.

Braces, on the other hand, are metal brackets glued or cemented to your teeth and connected with wires. While braces can also be used to straighten teeth, they are not as discreet as Invisalign aligners. And because they are fixed in place, you have to be careful about what you eat and drink while wearing them and take extra care when brushing and flossing to avoid getting food stuck in the brackets and wires.

Which one is right for you? Ultimately, the decision comes down to personal preference and your orthodontist’s recommendation. If you’re looking for a more discreet option that allows you to eat and drink whatever you want, Invisalign might be the better choice. But braces might be the way to go if you’re willing to put up with a little bit of inconvenience for a more affordable treatment option.

Benefits Of Invisalign and Braces

If you’re considering Invisalign or braces, you may be wondering what the most significant differences are between the two. Here are a few key points to help you make your decision:

Invisalign is almost invisible, while braces are very noticeable. This is the biggest advantage of Invisalign over braces. If you’re self-conscious about your appearance, Invisalign may be your better choice.

Invisalign is removable, while braces are not. You can take your Invisalign aligners out to eat, brush, and floss your teeth. With braces, food can get stuck in them, making it difficult to keep clean.

Invisalign treatment usually takes less time than braces treatment. On average, Invisalign treatment takes about 12 months, while braces treatment can take up to 36 months.

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Risks of Invisalign and Braces

There are a few risks associated with both Invisalign and braces. With Invisalign, one of the biggest risks is that the aligners can get lost or stolen if they are not properly stored. Braces also have a few risks, including getting food caught, which can lead to cavities or other dental problems. Additionally, both Invisalign and braces can cause discomfort or pain, especially when getting them on or adjusted.

Cost Comparison for Invisalign vs. Braces

There are a few key ways to compare the cost of Invisalign vs. braces. First, let’s look at the average cost of each treatment. According to the website CostHelper, the average cost of Invisalign is $5,000-$6,000, while the average cost of braces is $3,000-$7,000. So, while Invisalign may be slightly more expensive on average, it’s important to keep in mind that there is a range in pricing for both treatments. It’s also worth noting that some insurance plans cover part or all of the costs for braces but not for Invisalign.

When considering the cost of Invisalign vs. braces, it’s also important to consider the treatment length. Invisalign typically takes about 12-18 months to complete treatment, while braces usually take 18-24 months. Even though Invisalign may have a higher upfront cost, it may be more affordable in the long run because treatment is shorter.

 Lastly, it’s important to factor in any extra costs associated with each treatment. For example, you may need to purchase special flossing devices or toothbrushes for braces that you wouldn’t need with Invisalign. Overall, when considering all these factors, Invisalign and braces tend to be similarly priced when it comes to the overall cost.

Treatment Time Comparison Between the Two Options

When it comes to the treatment time comparison between Invisalign and braces, there is no clear winner. It depends on the individual case. In general, though, Invisalign tends to be faster than braces. This is because Invisalign uses a system of clear aligners that are switched out every two weeks. Each aligner is designed to move your teeth closer to the desired position. On average, patients will need between 18 and 30 aligners for their entire treatment. This means that treatment with Invisalign can be completed in as little as six months. However, sometimes, it may take up to a year or more.

Braces, on the other hand, work by gradually moving your teeth over time with the help of metal brackets and wires. Treatment times vary depending on how complex the case is, but braces generally take anywhere from 18 months to three years.

So, when it comes to treatment time comparison between Invisalign and braces, Invisalign is usually the faster option. However, there are some cases where braces may be the better choice depending on the situation.

Alternatives to Invisalign/Braces

There are a few alternatives to Invisalign and braces that are worth considering. One option is clear braces. Clear braces work similarly to traditional metal ones but are far less visible. This makes them a great option for people self-conscious about their appearance.

Another alternative is called Six Month Smiles. This treatment uses clear brackets and tooth-colored wires to move teeth into their proper position gradually. The results are usually visible within six months, hence the name.

Finally, there are snap-on teeth aligners. These devices look similar to mouthguards, but they gently shift teeth into place over time. Removable, they can be taken out for eating and cleaning.

Each of these alternatives has its pros and cons, so be sure to consult your orthodontist before making a decision.


We hope this article helped in outlining the differences between Invisalign and braces. By learning more about each dental treatment option, you can make a much better decision about which is right for your unique situation. While traditional metal braces are still used by many orthodontists today, Invisalign offers so many benefits that it’s hard to ignore its overall value when compared with other solutions. The choice of which aligner is best for you ultimately depends on your individual lifestyle needs and preferences.


1. What is Invisalign? 

Invisalign is an alternative to traditional braces. It’s made up of a series of clear plastic aligners that your doctor inserts into your teeth to straighten them gradually. The aligners are made so you can’t tell they are there, and they stay in place with the use of brackets that hold them in place on your teeth. 

2. Why would I choose Invisalign over braces? 

Invisalign has some advantages over traditional braces. You don’t have to wear metal braces for long periods so you can resume normal activities faster than traditional braces. You also don’t have to re-wear brackets at each adjustment appointment like traditional braces, which is helpful if you live far away from the office or travel frequently for work or school. 

3. Does it cost more than braces? 

It depends on how many appointments you have throughout the treatment process. Still, typically, it costs less than braces because Invisalign needs fewer appointments per year than traditional metal braces.

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