Orthodontists and dentists both help patients improve their oral health, but in different ways. Dentistry is a broad medical specialty that deals with the teeth, gum, nerves, and jaw, while orthodontics is a specialty within dentistry that focuses on correcting bites, occlusion, and the straightness of teeth
Invisalign is a custom-made aligner that is interchanged roughly every two weeks for a period of six to eighteen months, or longer depending on the severity of misalignment. Similar to a mouth or dental retainer (which is designed to keep teeth from shifting out of place), an Invisalign aligner is used for orthodontic treatment as a technique to move and properly align teeth for a beautiful smile. This clear aligner is usually computer generated from a mold (or impression) of the patient’s teeth—taken by either a dentist or an orthodontist—and the fitting is unique to each patient only.
Unlike conventional braces, Invisalign is one of the most convenient methods to straighten teeth, requiring patients to make minor life changes to accommodate the orthodontic treatment. For instance, patients can take out the aligners when brushing, flossing, eating, or drinking—a significant advantage over cumbersome braces that not only complicate oral care, but also are especially prone to damage when eating hard or chewy foods (i.e. corn on the cob, crunchy taco shells, beef jerky, etc.). Because the mouth trays are transparent (nearly invisible), patients using Invisalign aligners can straighten their teeth without embarrassing metal brackets and wires taking away from the natural look of their smile. The plastic aligners are also gentle on cheeks and gums—unlike braces, which contain sharp edges that can scrape or cut the inside of the mouth.
A permanent retainer, also referred to as a bonded retainer or fixed retainer, is a wire or small metal bar that holds your teeth in place and prevents them from moving after an orthodontic treatment. This helps prevent issues such as gapping or crowding.
Once your permanent retainer is placed in your mouth, you won’t need to worry about daily retainer schedules, since it is permanently affixed to your teeth. Because teeth begin to shift naturally as we age, a permanent retainer typically offers betterlong-term results for teeth straightening than a removable one.
Like any type of dental hardware, permanent retainers can become damaged or wear down over time, so you may have to replace it at some point. … Furthermore, since permanent retainers are only affixed to the front teeth, they can’t help keep side or back teeth aligned.