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Adult Orthodontic
Treatment: Braces vs. Clear Retainers

Adult Orthodontic Treatment: Braces vs. Clear Retainers

Author: Dr. Anthony Eng, D.D.S.

Date: February 23rd, 2021

Although childhood is the ideal time to correct any positioning problems with your teeth, many people didn’t have the opportunity as children to get the dental care they needed. In addition, dentistry has progressed tremendously over the past 20 years, which means the options on offer now far outpace those that were available in the 1980s and 1990s. Adult orthodontics include Invisalign from our Scarborough dental office, which enables you to enhance your smile regardless of your current age. You aren’t alone, either, because the American Association of Orthodontists states that one in four orthodontic patients is over age 18.

Types of Adult Orthodontics

Adult orthodontic patients seek treatment for a range of dental concerns, including a crossbite, crooked teeth, overcrowding, or gaps between the teeth. The most common forms of treatment are the use of braces, and fortunately the days of unsightly metal braces or unwieldy headgear are gone. Options now include braces, Invisalign aligners, and clear retainers. Many of these are almost invisible, although even braces with visible components are less unattractive than in the past. Here are some of the benefits of choosing Invisalign vs. braces.


Many adult orthodontic issues can be treated effectively by fitting the patient with braces, which have traditionally been used for decades. Braces now come in a range of streamlined models, including some made from tooth-coloured ceramic. This helps them to be less obvious in the mouth, although they do still have visible components such as wires or rubber bands. The braces are attached to your teeth for the duration of the treatment and are not removable. Although most patients quickly get used to wearing braces, they do require extra care to keep the teeth clean. Wearers are also discouraged from eating certain foods that can cause damage to the braces.

Invisalign Treatment

When you choose Invisalign orthodontic treatment, you’ll be fitted for a series of clear aligners that gradually change the position of the teeth. They are thin, plastic-type trays made according to your impressions, which fit perfectly over your teeth. These are engineered to put gentle pressure on the problem teeth, guiding them slowly into place.
You’ll be required to change to a new aligner every two weeks, or according to the schedule our Invisalign Scarborough dentist provides. The aligners are not only virtually invisible, but are also removable for eating, brushing, or briefly on social occasions. As long as you wear them for at least 22 hours a day, you’ll receive the benefit of the treatment.

Wearing Clear Retainers Afterwards

Most patients are required to wear clear retainers for at least 6 months after Invisalign treatment ends, to maintain the results delivered by the aligners. In some instances, you may have to wear these for longer, depending on your individual situation. Our Invisalign dentists in Scarborough will be able to determine whether you need to go on wearing retainers and for how long.

Cost Factors

Invisalign cost in Canada ranges from $2,000 to $8,000. According to manufacturers, treatment can cost between $3,000 and $9,000, but having dental insurance can significantly reduce costs. Most insurance companies pay for your dental visits, and a portion of the treatment cost for each year you’re having treatment. The initial cost of traditional braces could be slightly lower, but any repairs or replacement parts will be for your account or your insurance. This means that for patients who are eligible for either procedure, the costs are comparable.


Resolving your dental issues and enhancing your smile can be life-changing, and with the advancements in adult orthodontics there’s no reason why you shouldn’t benefit from the opportunities available. To schedule an appointment to discuss your options with an experienced, compassionate Invisalign dentist in Scarborough, please call 416-291-3117 or click here to contact us today.

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