crowded teeth

Fixing Crowded Teeth: Invisalign vs Traditional Braces

Even if you had perfectly straight teeth as a child and teenager, mesial drift could mean you’re now experiencing crowded teeth as an adult.

Teeth move forward as we get older. That means that the straight teeth you had when you were younger could start to become crooked.

The crowding of teeth at the front of the mouth, or overcrowding as a young adult due to wisdom teeth growth, can be resolved using braces.

But, which type of braces are the best? Here are some things to consider when you choose your route to straight teeth.

The Differences Between Invisalign and Traditional Braces

There are two approaches that are most common for fixing overcrowded or crooked teeth: traditional braces and Invisalign.

Traditional braces are made out of wires that are attached to each tooth with added tension to bring teeth back into line. The tension is altered over time with repeat visits to the orthodontist.

Invisalign is a newer system that involves clear trays that overlay teeth to help resolve the crooked look that comes from overcrowding. Trays are changed periodically to bring teeth back into a desirable arrangement.

So, what do you need to consider when choosing between the two options?


Wire braces are often a cheaper option than Invisalign trays. If you’re on a tight budget or want to fix your growing child’s teeth then traditional braces may be the better option.

Invisalign is a bit more expensive but there are many advantages over wire braces, which often outweigh the extra cost.

Chance of Pain and Irritation

Traditional braces can be painful to put in and may cause pain during each tightening session. Invisalign can also be a bit painful but will often be described more as ‘pressure’ than true pain.

Any discomfort from either braces or Invisalign can be aided with an over-the-counter pain reliever.

Braces, however, can break. This causes additional discomfort until you can see your orthodontist, as the braces are fixed to your teeth. Invisalign trays are designed to be removed, so if you have a problem you can take them out yourself.

Braces also have parts that can irritate the lips and teeth. This can cause discomfort or even result in abscesses from constant contact with the delicate skin inside the mouth.

Invisalign trays are made of smooth thermoplastic material, and the enamel brackets on your teeth to help fit them are located inside the tray. This means there is less chance of discomfort from irritation.


Traditional braces can be easily seen as they are made up of wires between struts on each tooth. These can be enamel-colored to reduce visibility, but it is still clear that you have braces.

Invisalign trays are far less noticeable, which makes this an ideal option for adults who are conscious about their appearance.


Braces are fixed to the teeth. This means it’s often hard to keep teeth very clean, and there are some foods that need to be avoided as they can stick to or even break braces.

Invisalign trays can be removed with ease, so the wearer can keep their mouth very clean. The tray can also be taken out while eating messy or sticky foods that would normally cause difficulty with other types of braces.

Want to Fix Your Crowded Teeth?

As well as considering the points above, you also need to remember that your personal situation may be more suited to one style of braces over another. For example, Invisalign works best on mild-to-moderate tooth crowding, but braces can work for most situations.

To fix your crowded teeth, speak to an expert who will be able to recommend the best route for your own circumstances, budget, and lifestyle.


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