Most teenagers realize that their smile can be improved greatly through Orthodontics and up until the past 4-5 years have had only one choice….fixed braces and wires.
Now with Invisalign Teen, teenagers do not need to have fixed braces placed on their teeth during their most self-conscious years and can still achieve a beautiful, healthy smile.
A survey done by Align Technology found that 94% of teens prefer Invisalign over braces. Our experience in our offices verifies this fact: Teens want a beautiful smile, but they DO NOT WANT braces.
As a practicing Orthodontist for over 27 years, I have finally realized this to be true. (I can’t believe it took me this long!) While most children under the age of 12 are very excited about silver braces and all the great colors that go on the teeth, by the time these children reach middle school, the excitement about silver braces or even clear braces has all but disappeared.
Besides the fact that teens do not want fixed braces on their teeth, there are some significant advantages to Invisalign for the parents of these teenagers.
Most parents are both working or have other children that need to be driven to sports practices, music lessons and school events. With Teen Invsialign, there are no more broken brackets at 8pm at night or a wire that is poking through the cheek at 7am.
Parents will not need to make extra time for emergency visits to get a bracket replaced or a wire trimmed. Another huge advantage is sports.
Your average teenager today is involved in sports that often means travel out of the area. What do you do when you are 100 miles from home and it is Saturday at the basketball tournament and your son just got hit in the face with a ball and half his braces are hanging out of his mouth?
With Invisalign the aligners can be worn during all sporting activities and can actually protect the teeth from injury. No need to worry about a Saturday night visit to the emergency room to get braces removed that have been embedded into your child’s cheek.
Another big advantage for the parents and teens with Invisalign, is the fact that you do not need to change your diet. No special foods or dinners need to be prepared for your child during his or her Invisalign treatment. They take out their aligners and eat their favorite foods, brush their teeth and put them back into place.
Since they are removable, oral hygiene is a breeze and the permanent stains that can sometimes occur with fixed braces, will not happen with Invisalign due to ease of brushing and flossing.
In general, you will have less visits and less time spent in the Orthodontist office and your end result will be as good if not better than fixed braces.
Why do parents still choose fixed braces for their teens?
One reason is the perceived cost. When Invisalign first came out in 1999 it was very expensive compared to fixed braces. Since that time, the technology has improved and the costs have come down significantly to where in most offices nationwide, it is the same price as fixed braces.
A second reason, is that parents are worried their child will not wear them or lose their aligners. Company wide, 1000’s of doctors who have be polled about this have all had the same experience like we have had, the teens wear their aligners better than most adults and they rarely misplace them.
The good news is that up to 6 aligners can be reordered at no charge if needed. We often find this not to be necessary as the patient has worn the misplaced aligner long enough to just move forward to the next one a few days early.
We believe that clear removable braces, like Invisalign, are the future of Orthodontics and the best choice today for both Teens and Adults seeking a beautiful, healthy smile.