Nothing makes you feel confident quite like a bright and healthy smile. A great smile can even help your career. People who do not feel satisfied with their smile often try to hide their teeth with a tight-lipped smile instead of flashing those pearly whites in a wide grin. Many people with crooked teeth, gaps, or similar alignment issues who do not receive orthodontic treatment in childhood may have difficulty choosing between the embarrassment of adult braces or maintaining their misaligned teeth.
If you want straighter teeth but are not comfortable with the idea of traditional adult braces, more options are now available to obtain a beautiful, straight smile. Among those many options are Invisalign and Smile Direct. Before you make a decision, you should know the differences between Invisalign vs. Smile Direct.
Invisalign and Smile Direct are both advertised as methods to straighten your teeth in less time and less obviously than getting traditional braces as an adult. How do you choose? Many factors should impact your choice of Invisalign vs Smile Direct. Learn the the most important aspects of Invisalign compared to Smile Direct and how to get started after you choose.
Invisalign vs. Smile Direct: How Do They Work?
Before getting into the differences between the two methods for straightening your teeth, you should understand the similarities. Many adults are concerned about the “nerdy” aspect of adult braces, but in both systems, no one has to know! They each use a clear aligner to straighten teeth and are very popular with adults due to the near invisibility. Each system generally follows the same steps.
- Treatment eligibility is decided.
- Molds or digital scans are taken of your teeth.
- Treatment begins with clear aligners that change periodically as teeth become realigned.
- Post-treatment retainers are created.
The Cost of Invisalign vs. Smile Direct
The main differences between Invisalign and Smile Direct are the length of time necessary for treatment, the cost of treatment, and in-office visits. Treatment for Invisalign is more expensive, ranging from $3,500 to $5,500.
One reason Invisalign is more expensive are regular visits to a dentist who is specially trained to prescribe this system. Visits generally occur every four to six weeks. Smile Direct is typically a remote process. Your dentist — who is only required to take a three-week training course in order to prescribe Smile Direct — never actually sees your teeth in person. Check-ins occur remotely every 90 days. This indirect and sparsely-visited treatment means the percentage for error goes up drastically — complicating and/or slowing progress… if the process does not halt altogether.
The Length of Treatment for Invisalign vs. Smile Direct
Both Invisalign and Smile Direct offer multiple options for treatment, and each treatment options require different lengths of time.
With Invisalign, three main treatment options are available: Invisalign Full, Invisalign Express 10 or 5, and Invisalign Teen. Each of these options requires aligners to be worn 20-22 hours a day. Treatment can take between six and eighteen months, depending on the severity of the misalignment of your teeth. Invisalign treatment is more customized for your age and needs.
Smile Direct includes two treatment options: Smile Direct Club Clear Aligners or Nighttime Clear Aligners. Each option lasts between six to twelve months and the aligners are either worn all day or only at night.
The Choice is Clear
When deciding between Invisalign versus Smile Direct to straighten your teeth, Smile Direct does offer a cheaper option. That being said, “you get what you pay for” is generally accurate — and it is definitely true in this instance. Paying less means you have less access to a dentist if things go wrong. The American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) stresses the importance of in-person evaluations and supervision during treatment to get a healthy and bright smile.
With remote appointments, Smile Direct simply cannot provide the same quality you get with Invisalign. To get the results you want to straightening your teeth, trust the experts and go with the expert-recommended Invisalign.
Your Invisalign Journey
Would Invisalign Work For Me?
Whether you are a fit candidate for Invisalign depends on several factors. The first factor to consider is age. The Invisalign system is best suited for adults and older teenagers rather than children or younger teens whose teeth are still moving and growing.
Next, the severity of your issue must be considered. It is the biggest determinant of whether Invisalign will work for you or not. This is because some issues, such as large overbites, require more advanced procedures (shifting the jaw) to fix the problem. As long as the issue is not exceedingly severe, Invisalign can usually do the trick. Problems Invisalign can treat include:
- Crooked teeth,
- Overcrowded teeth,
- Gaps between teeth, and
- Small overbites, underbites, and crossbites.
Finally, you must consider your dedication to getting a bright and healthy smile of which you can be proud. Invisalign is relatively easy compared to braces because you have the option to remove the aligners. That being said, you are required to wear the aligners at least 22 hours a day, only removing them to eat and drink beverages other than water. If you are not willing to wear the aligners for the allotted time each day, Invisalign will not work for you.
How Do I Get Invisalign?
Once you make the decision to use Invisalign as your teeth straightening system, the first step is to see your dentist and make sure you are in fact a good candidate for Invisalign. Next, your dentist will perform a digital, 3-D scan of your teeth. The scan is used to construct custom aligners just for you.
When the aligners are ready, your dentist will ensure they fit properly when you come pick them up and start your Invisalign journey to straighter teeth. The next visit will occur in six to eight weeks. Your dentist will assess your progress and provide your next set of aligners. In as little as a few months, your teeth should start looking straighter (although this does not mean you should quit treatment if you want the results to remain permanently)!
Invisalign in North Little Rock, AR
If you are ready for the confidence that comes with a bright and healthy smile, call Dean Dental Solutions for Invisalign in NLR. Invisalign has helped so many people with various alignment issues get a brand new, bright, and healthy smile — and the confidence that comes with it. Get started on your Invisalign journey today! Contact Dean Dental Solutions online or call (501) 771-2911 to schedule a consultation!