Many people will need braces at some point in their lifetime. As a general rule of thumb, the older we get, the less appealing the thought of having braces becomes. It is for this reason that a lot of people, especially older people, look into clear or invisible braces so that they are more discreet.
Traditional braces consist of metal brackets that are connected by a silver metal wire. Clear braces are not 100% invisible per se, but they are much more subtle than metal braces. They are a great option for someone who wants to fix their smile without drawing too much attention to it at the same time.
There are a few different kinds of “clear” braces out there to choose from, so here is a list of your options:
Clear Braces – Clear braces are essentially the same as traditional metal braces, they just have brackets made out of tooth-colored or clear ceramic instead of silver metal, making them much more incognito. They do, however, still have the silver wire connecting the brackets, so they are not completely invisible.
Invisalign® – Invisalign® is a custom-made series of clear plastic aligner trays that fit perfectly over your teeth: no brackets or wires are involved. Invisalign® is not permanent, meaning you can remove them to eat, clean your teeth, clean the aligner trays, etc.
Lingual Braces – Lingual braces are exactly like traditional metal braces, with one exception: they are placed on the inside of your teeth (the side of your teeth that are facing your tongue). This makes them practically invisible. Lingual braces tend to be more expensive and may have to be worn longer than traditional braces.
Just because you want clear braces does not mean that they will be the right choice for you: clear braces are not for everyone. You’ll need to have a consultation with your orthodontist to see what treatment option is best for you. Factors such as age and the severity of your case will help determine the most appropriate course of action.