Monthly Archives

December 2018

smiling woman wearing clear braces

Clear Braces vs Invisalign: What’s the Difference?

By Blog, Braces, Orthodontics
smiling woman wearing clear braces

If you’re thinking about straightening your teeth, there are several options available. So many, in fact, that it can seem a bit overwhelming deciding which option is right for you. At Markham Orthodontics in Sacramento, CA, we offer a wide range of options, including traditional metal braces, clear braces, and Invisalign®. One of the most common questions we hear involve the differences between clear braces and Invisalign. Today, Dr. David Markham will explore the similarities and differences between these two orthodontic treatments.

About Clear Braces

Clear braces are quite similar to conventional metal braces – with one major difference: The brackets are clear ceramic and the wires are tooth-colored. This gives patients the opportunity to straighten their smiles a little more discreetly.

About Invisalign

Unlike metal and clear braces, Invisalign doesn’t use brackets, wires, or bands at all. This system straightens the smile with clear, removeable, plastic trays. During treatment, patients will be given several sets of aligners, which they will switch out every two weeks to achieve the desired results.

What’s the Difference between Clear Braces and Invisalign?

Now that we’ve had a brief review of both clear braces and Invisalign, let’s look at a few key differences between the two.

Invisalign is more discreet.

If you want to forego metal braces for a more aesthetically pleasing look, then Invisalign is probably your best option. While clear braces are certainly less noticeable compared to their metal counterparts, Invisalign is virtually invisible to others.

Clear braces are more versatile.

Both clear braces and Invisalign can treat a wide variety of orthodontic issues. The difference is, clear braces can correct more severe cases. For example, if you have extremely crooked, gapped, or overlapped teeth, clear braces will be more effective than Invisalign.

Invisalign is removable.

Patients who choose clear braces will still need to clean around their wires and brackets, as these appliances are bonded onto the teeth until treatment is complete. Invisalign, on the other hand, is completely removeable. This means that you can enjoy all of your favorite foods without worrying about broken components. Just remember to place your aligner trays back in your mouth after meals; to be effective, Invisalign must be worn at least 22 hours every day.

Clear braces require fewer adjustments.

To successfully correct orthodontic issues with Invisalign, trays must be changed out every two weeks. However, those who choose clear braces will only need adjustments about every four weeks. No matter which option you choose, Dr. Markham will monitor your progress every few weeks to make sure you stay on track.

Clear braces are more likely to irritate soft tissues.

While clear braces certainly look different than traditional metal ones, the design is essentially the same. Therefore, the ceramic brackets and wires are more likely to irritate your lips, cheeks, and tongue compared to Invisalign trays. There’s no need to worry, however. Those who choose clear orthodontics typically become accustomed to their new appliance within a week or two.

Clear braces are more fragile.

The ceramic brackets used for clear braces are incredibly strong. However, they are still not as durable as metal. Therefore, they are more prone to breakage or other damage. Following the recommended guidelines set forth by Dr. Markham can help you avoid such situations.

Contact Markham Orthodontics Today

Looking for a better smile and a boost in confidence? Set up an appointment at our Sacramento, CA dental practice to find out which orthodontic option is right for you. Contact us at 916-635-5400.

Dispelling Common Orthodontics Myths

By Orthodontics

Most people are familiar with what a dentist does on a day-to-day basis. But there is still a lot of misinformation regarding the work of orthodontists. Here at Markham Orthodontics, we want everyone to feel comfortable getting the ortho treatment they need so they can feel confident showcasing their most beautiful asset—their smile. That’s why we’re dispelling some of the most common myths related to the field of orthodontics. We hope you’ll gain some valuable insight to help you make a more informed decision about your oral health.

Myth #1: Dentists and Orthodontists are One in the Same

As the old adage goes, not all dentists are orthodontists, but all orthodontists are dentists. Confusing, right? While both professionals are committed to helping you improve the look and health of your teeth, the main differences come down to training. To become a certified orthodontist, an individual must obtain their bachelor’s degree, a doctorate at a dental school, and then complete two or three years of additional specialty training at an orthodontic residency program, which involves a blend of classroom studies and clinical experience. Orthodontists specialize in straightening teeth and aligning jaws for optimal function and form. They also possess expertise on the functionality of orthodontic appliance tools including braces, clear aligners, retainers, and more.

Myth #2: Orthodontics are Expensive

The costs of treatment vary greatly as they are dependent on the complexity of each case. And each orthodontic practice has their own fee structure in place. However, we sincerely believe that the benefits far outweigh the costs. The value in seeing an orthodontist at Markham Orthodontics can be found in the collective education, expertise, and experience that our team possesses. And, in the way we treat our patients like individuals, not cases. A complimentary consultation at our office with one of our experienced professionals can help ensure that your preferred orthodontic choice can fit within your budget.

Myth #3: Orthodontics is Purely Cosmetic

The results of ortho treatment extends far beyond giving you a stunning smile. While some people may choose ortho treatment for aesthetic purposes, appliances like braces are necessary for health reasons. The purpose of braces is to position teeth into their best possible alignment. Teeth that suffer from misalignment can lead to achy jaws, headaches, facial pain, and neck pain, and can even interfere with proper chewing since crooked teeth don’t operate as well as straight ones. Teeth that are misaligned can also be more difficult to brush and keep clean, which can lead to cavities and gum disease.

Myth #4: Orthodontists Only Treat Children and Young Adults

Another widespread misconception about orthodontic specialists is that they only treat children. While you are bound to see lots of young children when you visit an orthodontic clinic, you’ll also come across many teenagers and adults. In fact, one in five patients currently undergoing ortho treatment is an adult. Since crooked teeth can be caused by a variety of different factors, it’s entirely plausible for an individual to require ortho treatment at any age.

Contact Your Local Dentist Today

Now that you’ve got the facts, are you ready to set your smile straight? Contact our Sacramento, CA practice online or call our office at (916) 507-1019 to schedule a free consultation. We’ll answer all of your questions, discuss your goals, and customize a treatment plan to suit your smile and needs.