A French dentist named Pierre Fauchard came up with the idea for braces in 1728. Ever since braces have been a right of passage for the majority of teens in America. 

Braces are a type of orthodontic treatment that can help correct alignment problems in your child’s teeth. They work by gradually moving misaligned teeth into the correct position.

Most braces are made from metal, but that’s not the only option out there. Invisible braces for teens have started to gain popularity in recent years. This is due to their low-profile nature. 

If you’re wondering if invisible braces are the best choice for your teen, you’ve come to the right place. We’ll go over everything you need to know about this dental option in our handy guide. 

Types of Braces 

There are many types of braces for teens out there, each with pros and cons. In general, braces come in three different forms. 

Metal Braces 

The most common type of braces are made from metal. They are also the most obvious type of braces on your teeth. 

When you get metal braces, your orthodontist will attach metal brackets to your teeth. These brackets then connect to a wire. This wire applies pressure to the teeth to move them into alignment.

This process can take several months or even a year or more, depending on how much your teeth need to be moved.

Ceramic Braces 

Ceramic braces work just like metal braces. This brace option uses a tooth-colored ceramic instead of metal for the brackets. Ceramic braces are less noticeable than the metal type. 

Invisible Braces 

Invisible braces are made of clear plastic and are virtually invisible when worn. This choice is a great way for teens to get straight teeth without having to wear traditional braces. 

When you get invisible braces, you’ll have clear aligners instead of metal brackets. This is the most inconspicuous of the three braces options. 

How Invisible Braces Work 

Before you get your invisible braces, your doctor will need to take the form of your teeth and mouth. This form becomes the mold used to make the aligners for your teeth. The forms get changed out every one to two weeks until your teeth are in an ideal position. 

Most teens need anywhere from six months to two years to get a proper alignment. The final length of time depends on the anatomy of the mouth. 

Your teen will wear their aligners for at least 22 hours each day. Your teen must wear their aligners that long each day to get the best results. 

Maintaining Invisible Braces 

Your teen will have an easier time taking care of their invisible braces. Metal braces can break or come apart if you eat the wrong thing. This isn’t an issue with invisible braces, as they can come out for meals. 

Invisible braces do need a little bit of care. Each morning when your teen gets up, they should clean their aligners and their teeth. They don’t want the bacteria from the night wreaking havoc on your mouth. 

Your teen needs to rinse off their aligners each time they take them out of their mouth. For a deeper clean, they can soak the aligners in denture cleaner. Then, take a soft-bristled toothbrush to them to get rid of any lingering plaque. 

Before your teen puts their aligners back in their mouth, they should make sure to brush their teeth. Trapped food could spell trouble and cause cavities.

When your invisible braces aren’t in your teen’s mouth, they should be in the case they come in. This step will keep the aligners free from damage and other bacteria.  

Benefits of Invisible Braces for Teens

Invisible braces are a great choice for many different orthodontic conditions. They can help with gaps and spaces in your teeth. They also help overbites, underbites, and tooth crowding in your mouth. 

Unlike traditional braces, these braces don’t have dietary restrictions. You can pop these aligners out during mealtime. This means foods like popcorn and apples are back on the table. 

Invisible braces are the best braces for your teen athlete. Metal braces can be harsh on the mouth during sports. Your teen can take their invisible braces out before their sports practices or games. 

The teenage years are full of big events. Nobody wants a mouth full of braces at homecoming or prom. Because your teen can take out their invisible braces for a few hours a day, they can go to events braces-free. 

Finally, invisible braces are a much more comfortable option for your teen. The smooth plastic won’t pinch or hurt the inside of their mouth. 

Teen Invisible Braces Tips 

Make sure your teen never eats or drinks with their invisible braces in. Anything beyond water will damage the aligners. They also don’t want food stuck between the aligner and their teeth, as that is a recipe for cavities. 

Toothpaste is a big no-no when cleaning the aligners. Using toothpaste to clean the aligners can cause them to yellow or get damaged. 

Also, make sure your teen avoids using any colored or scented soaps on the aligner trays. These soaps won’t taste good and can stain the aligners. 

Help Your Teen Transform Their Smile With Invisible Braces

Being a teenager is a busy and social time. Invisible braces for teens can help bring out your teen’s inner confidence. 

If you want to get your teen started with invisible braces, North Seattle Orthodontics is here to help. Our professional team has been helping teens get beautiful smiles for over twenty years. Contact us today to get the process started!