Here at Edgewood Dental Care, Dr. McMahon and our Edgewood, KY dentists have so many options to straighten your teeth. If you need to get your smile straightened fast, you might consider Fastbraces (check out last month’s blog post on this exciting new offering!) If you have moderately to severely crooked teeth or other bite issues, you or your child might benefit best from our traditional braces or full banded orthodontics.

But what if you need braces and don’t want people to see that you’re getting treatment? It’s a problem we hear from a lot of our patients, especially busy adults and working professionals who don’t want to risk looking immature because they’ve got a metal mouth. On the other hand, they don’t want their current smile to distract from their appearance, either.

We have alternative solutions to your crooked smile! We offer clear braces and Invisalign to straighten your smile discreetly but effectively. Our goal is to make any experience with our practice personalized and comfortable, giving you the results you want. That’s exactly what we do with your orthodontic treatments as well. Read on to see how our goal applies to two great orthodontic solutions we can offer you.

Clear Alternatives to Braces: Clear Ceramic Brackets and Invisalign
If you need braces but don’t want metal parts showing when you smile, consider clear ceramic braces. These work the same way that metal braces do, exerting a gentle force to get your teeth into proper alignment. But instead of metal brackets and wires, you’ll get clear ones that are not very noticeable. Learn more about our clear ceramic braces here.

If you need to straighten your teeth but just hate the thought of braces, you might be a good candidate for Invisalign. Instead of brackets and wires, you’ll use clear, custom aligners that fit over your teeth to straighten them. You’ll change out the aligners every couple of weeks as your teeth alignment changes. Read more about Invisalign here.

Now that you know what these orthodontic options are, let’s see what the potential advantages and disadvantages of each one are.

Clear Ceramic Braces

  • no metal
  • clear wires and brackets are discreet
  • stain-resistant
  • may be slightly less expensive than Invisalign, depending on length of treatment
  • works well for almost all cases of misalignment, from mild to severe
  • higher rate of compliance compared to Invisalign (and therefore sometimes better end results), because braces aren’t removable


  • often longer treatment than Invisalign
  • may be more uncomfortable than Invisalign
  • not removable for cleaning and eating
  • takes longer to clean teeth and appliances on teeth
  • requires some adjustment to diet
  • brackets and wires may break, causing more visits and money
  • can increase risk of tooth decay if not cleaned properly
  • can leave marks after braces are removed at end of treatment (but consider our teeth whitening treatments if this happens to you!)


  • no metal
  • clear aligners are discreet and nearly invisible, more so than clear ceramic braces
  • no diet changes because aligners can be removed when you eat
  • no food stuck in wires and brackets
  • no hassle of special tools and time to clean brackets and wires, because aligners are removed to brush and floss your teeth
  • removable for special events and while taking photos
  • fewer visits to dentist office
  • lower risk of cavities


  • teens (or adults!) may lose or damage aligners because they can take them out
  • less compliance because aligners are removable, and sometimes can cause need for more or longer treatment (aligners need to be worn for at least 22 hours a day for the best results)
  • may be slightly more expensive than braces, depending on length of treatment
  • does not work as well for more complex or severe cases

So which decision is right for you? A lot of it will depend on your personal preference and what you want to achieve. On the other hand, the severity of your situation might influence which treatment will work better for you now and in the long run.

The only way to know for sure is to make an appointment at our office! Contact us today to see the clear advantage to straightening your teeth at Edgewood Dental Care! Whether you choose ceramic braces or Invisalign, we’ll use the best technology – including digital X-rays and our iTero digital scanner – to give you the best results and best smile possible!