It’s a classic question that many individuals ask when faced with the need for orthodontics and that is ultimately which is better – clear braces or metal braces? In the clear braces vs metal braces match-up, there are many things to consider. There are actually several different things to bear in mind when it comes to clear braces versus metal such as clear braces cost vs metal braces cost, metal braces versus ceramic braces when it comes to treatment times, are clear braces more expensive and do ceramic braces take longer or do metal braces take longer? Let’s break down these matchups into a few base categories.
Aesthetics clear braces vs. metal braces
It should come as little surprise that in the ceramic versus metal braces aesthetic match, ceramic braces are ultimately going to be a clear winner. Firstly, ceramic brackets offer a viable alternative to their metal counterparts according to research (Gwinnett AJ, 1988). Ceramic braces utilize tooth colored ceramics to make sure that they blend seamlessly with your teeth. The three different types of ceramics colors that can be used include ivory, white, and porcelain. These three colors match with the vast majority of teeth colors and so make it easy for people to find the colors that will match their needs. When you combine this with clear rubber bands, it can make these braces far more aesthetically pleasing than their metal counterparts (Gwinnett AJ, 1988).
Clear braces vs. metal braces care
Compare and contrast this against traditional metal braces which despite the fact they have gotten significantly smaller with time and are no longer the significant bands of yesteryear, they are still significantly more noticeable than the clear variety. However, it is important to know that although ceramic braces will win this match up nine out of ten times, there is one thing to bear in mind when it comes to utilizing ceramic braces.
These tooth colored ceramics can occasionally begin to take on a different color than your normal teeth. This can happen for a wide variety of reasons such as smoking, drinking juices, or eating foods that may stain your teeth. If your teeth end up getting stained a different color than the ceramics, it can make the ceramics far more noticeable than they were previously. Maintaining proper oral hygiene can help negate this potential drawback and ensure that ceramic braces will always win the aesthetic challenge. This also includes avoiding staining foods and beverages like coffee, brown sodas, red wine, and tomato sauces.
Additionally, if you are curious about the bond strength of ceramic braces, you will be pleased to know that the bond strength of ceramic braces is comparable to and as reliable as their metal counterparts (Gwinnett AJ, 1988).
Metal vs ceramic braces treatment time
When it comes to treatment times between metal and ceramic braces, this one ends up being a draw. The fact of the matter is that the only time ceramic braces or clear braces will be less speedy than traditional metal braces is if you happen to get ones of poor quality or have a bad orthodontist. However, if you’re going to visit a reputable orthodontic office like Ivanov Orthodontics, you will notice the treatment times are nearly identical when it comes to ceramic braces versus traditional metal braces.
This is because both types of braces attach the front of the teeth, both types of braces use arch wires to help pull the teeth into the correct positions, and so both types have a very similar treatment time with neither one pulling out ahead. The only difference will ultimately be between individual variations and treatment times.
Do ceramic braces take longer?
Since each person is an individual, while somebody you know may have had a shorter treatment time with ceramic braces, other people may have shorter treatment times with traditional metal braces. There’s no way to know what will ultimately be faster for you since the fact of the matter is you’re not going to be able try them both back to back to find out. This is why it’s important to make sure that you talk with your orthodontic office and find out from them what will be the best type of treatment for you and your needs. But let’s go on to our final matchup.
Clear braces vs metal braces treatment cost
When it comes to cost, this one goes to traditional metal braces. Traditional metal braces, as their name implies, are in fact very traditional. The reason they’re even called traditional metal braces is because of their ubiquity. This makes them far more affordable than ceramic braces.
Are clear braces more expensive?
While traditional metal braces can be installed by nearly every orthodontic office, ceramic braces may require somebody with a little bit more skill and know-how, especially when it comes to older or more legacy offices where the professionals there are more adept at utilizing the traditional metal braces.
Also, with the cost and convenience of them being more affordable it is a little wonder that traditional metal braces continue to have a role to play in modern orthodontic medicine. Ceramic braces can cost anywhere between $4,000 and $6,000 while traditional metal braces can often come in around $3,000 to $4,000.
One other thing to note – metal braces are often the braces of choice for younger patients because they can work quickly and keep a parent’s budget happier at the same time, a real bonus if there is more than one patient needing braces at a time.
Clear braces cost vs metal
Although individual experiences may vary as there will always be people on a higher or lower end of the spectrum, generally speaking, traditional metal braces will almost always be a thousand or more dollars less expensive than ceramic braces. And for some individuals for whom aesthetics is low priority like for young children or those on a strict budget, that $1,000 can be a huge difference. It can be an even bigger difference if your insurance will not pay for it.
Metal braces vs ceramic braces
In the end, ultimately having a session with your orthodontic office will be the surest way of finding out your needs. Whether you need to go for the more affordable traditional metal braces, the more aesthetically pleasing ceramic braces, or perhaps an entirely different orthodontic treatment, talking with your orthodontic office will ensure that you get the best treatment for your time, your money, and your comfort level. Finding out this information can help make sure that you have a beautiful smile that you’re proud to share with the world for years to come.
If you are one of the many adults or teenagers who have been referred to the orthodontist by a dentist or simply don’t like the way their teeth look because of the extra spaces or the crookedness of their teeth, you are not alone. You might also want to see an orthodontist because of some other dental problem and want to improve your appearance, meaning you may be at a stage where you want braces.
Many people know that braces can help to improve the alignment of teeth, but this may be the extent of their knowledge. In fact, some may not know that an orthodontist is the right health professional for the job. Also, if this is your scenario, then you are not alone and Ivanov Orthodontics can help you.
There are three major types of braces that an orthodontist can offer you, and each of these have pros and cons, so it is important to know exactly what you are getting when you pick one or the other. The best thing to do is to speak to your orthodontist for tailored and specific recommendations for you.
Additionally, you should ensure to follow all the instructions provided by your orthodontist so that you will get the most optimal results and the smile you desire.
Gwinnett A. J. (1988). A comparison of shear bond strengths of metal and ceramic brackets. American journal of orthodontics and dentofacial orthopedics: official publication of the American Association of Orthodontists, its constituent societies, and the American Board of Orthodontics, 93(4), 346–348.https://doi.org/10.1016/0889-5406 (88)90165-5