Invisalign vs. Traditional Braces: A Battle of Orthodontic Heavyweights

Do you know who James Braddock was? Unless you are pushing 90 years old, you would know only because there was a movie about the guy. Russell Crowe played James Braddock in Cinderella Man. Though it was an impossible long shot to beat the most feared heavyweight boxer, Braddock would go on to shock the world and beat Max Baer for the title in 1935. He would hold the title for two years until another up-and-comer named Joe Louis knocked Braddock out for the first time in his career. Braddock would retire after that fight, and Louis was quoted as saying that Braddock was the bravest man he ever fought.

That is kind of what we are looking at here. We have the established orthodontic heavyweight, braces, going up against a relative newcomer, Invisalign. Who will win? Which one is going to be the new champ of the orthodontic division? Check out their battle, and decide for yourself who is the rightful champ.

Introducing The Fighters

If you have crooked teeth or have a kid who has crooked teeth, you are sure to have heard about braces from your orthodontist. Traditional braces are the tried and true method of correcting teeth that are not in the position they are supposed to be in. Braces seem to have been around forever, and many people wonder why there isn’t an alternative. Today, Hellertown Dental Group has the alternative that they have been looking for: Invisalign. One catch though: your situation may not qualify you to use them.

Every teen who read that line just had their heart drop, but don’t worry. Here, you will get all of the information you need to be able to make a decision about whether Invisalign is an option for you. The dentists at Hellertown Dental Group are also able to help you evaluate your condition and find out if you can be helped by the modern-day alternative to traditional braces.

What Are Braces?

Braces are the go-to in the world of orthodontics. They are safe, effective, and an established method of treatment for all different kinds of problems you might be having with your bite. Braces are made up of metal brackets that are cemented to the front of your teeth. A special wire is then attached to the brackets. This wire is what applies the force to your teeth and begins the movement to correct alignment. Braces get the job done, but they are out front for all to see while they do. There is also the chance that the brackets will irritate your lips or cheeks when you first get your braces. You will get used to wearing them, however, and this irritation will soon go away. There will also be some foods that you are not allowed to eat, and cleaning your teeth will become both more important and more complicated.

What Is Invisalign?

Invisalign is made up of a series of clear plastic aligner trays. These trays are meant to be worn for about 22 hours a day for two weeks apiece. During that time, they will move your teeth closer to proper alignment. Every two weeks or so, you will move to the next set of trays in the system. The process then starts all over again. You will do this every two weeks for roughly a year. The only catch is that children who are still developing their dental structure, and more severe orthodontic cases, cannot be helped by Invisalign. The normal ages for this treatment are late teens to adulthood.

The one thing that really stands out with Invisalign is that the aligners are practically invisible to others. The clear plastic aligners do not affect your smile, and you can pop them out when you eat. This means no food is off limits with the Invisalign system. Brushing your teeth in the morning and at night will be the same as well. Just take the aligners out, brush your teeth, clean the aligners, and pop them back in. It’s almost as simple as not having Invisalign in the first place.

Which One Is Better?


Advantages: Able to handle almost every orthodontic problem you can have, stand the test of time, reliable, and effective.

Disadvantages: Have a visible effect on your smile while wearing them, can’t come off, and can be harder to clean.


Advantages: Practically invisible to those around you, comfortable, convenient, and shorter treatment time at roughly about a year.

Disadvantages: Only suitable for certain ages and conditions.

There you have the strengths and weaknesses of each one of these dental heavyweights. So, which one will win? You will have to see the dentists at Hellertown Dental Group to find out. Call our Hellertown, PA office at 484-858-0949 to schedule your consultation, and see how this fight for the ages shakes out in the end. You can schedule online as well. The bell is about to ring, and we can’t wait to see how this fight ends.

Schedule an appointment with Dr. Ann or Dr. Maria!
1213 Main Street, Hellertown PA, 18055