Over the years, teeth straightenings have improved considerably. There are always newer and better products and technologies that will help our patients achieve the smile they want.

Today, there are several teeth straightenings available. Braces continue to be a very popular option for people who want to straighten their teeth. However, Invisalign is also becoming highly in-demand among teeth straightening patients.

So how is Invisalign different from braces? Let’s take a closer look.

Traditional Braces

Braces are comprised of archwires and brackets placed across the teeth. They are secured by means of a special elastic tie. The brackets can be made of metal, composite or ceramic and the patient can choose from a wide array of colors for the brackets.

The archwires are flexible and are attached to the brackets in order to apply constant pressure on the teeth so they will gradually move.

Traditional braces can correct problems like teeth alignment issues, crowding, protrusions, crooked teeth, and irregular spacing (gapped teeth). Braces will progressively move the teeth to their ideal place to give you a more attractive smile.

The duration of treatment using traditional braces varies. Some cases need less than a year, while others can take more than two years. Once the braces are removed, your dentist will prescribe a dental retainer so that the teeth won’t return to their original position.


Invisalign is often referred to as “invisible braces.” It’s basically a series of clear aligners that you wear without other people realizing you’re actually wearing them. Invisalign can be used to treat crowded teeth, spaced teeth, crossbites, overbites, and minor bite irregularities.

The clear aligners are specially made for each patient using computer technology to ensure that they fit you perfectly. The aligners are removable so you can take them out when you eat, brush and floss your teeth. Keep in mind, however, that you’ll be required to wear the clear aligners for at least 20 hours each day.

You will be given 2 sets of aligners during each dental visit, spaced around 4-6 weeks apart. The duration of treatment also varies, depending on each case. Most adult patients can complete treatment in about a year, sometimes less.

Invisalign is an excellent alternative to clunky, uncomfortable braces. However, it should be noted that it may not be able to treat major teeth straightening issues. To determine if you’re a suitable candidate for Invisalign, please call us to schedule an appointment with Dr. Triggs of Clear Smiles Alaska.