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Alternative to Braces for Teens

If your teenager is self-conscious about their crooked teeth, consider orthodontic treatments. At Bishop Family Dental, we are regularly asked about Invisalign Teen® as an alternative to braces for teens. This treatment is growing more popular as more and more teens undergo Invisalign Teen to transform their smile without any bulky and noticeable braces. If you live in Salt Lake City, Utah, or the 84124 area, we encourage you to call 801-274-2500 and schedule an examination. We can determine if Invisalign® is right for your child and how to get started.


Invisalign® straightens teeth through the use of a series of clear, plastic aligners. For teeth to realign from being crooked, low but steady pressure must be applied. With braces, this pressure is exerted by a wire threaded through metal brackets bonded onto each tooth. With Invisalign®, a series of specially-designed clear aligners exert this pressure on the misaligned teeth. When worn successively, each aligner in the series exerts the right amount of pressure on the misaligned teeth, shifting them their correct positions.

Here are seven things about Invisalign® you should know:


Why does this matter? If your teen finds their orthodontics treatment unobtrusive, even enjoyable, they will be more committed to completing it. Orthodontic treatments are not one-and-done procedures. Your teen will need to remember to wear their aligners, keep their appointments, clean and take care of their teeth, etc. This requires a level of commitment. The same can be said about wearing traditional braces, but the wearer will not be as comfortable or confident during the process as they are with Invisalign aligners. In fact, studies reveal that teens wear their Invisalign® aligners 21 hours per day on average. And because the aligners are fully removable, this shows the patients’ level of commitment in using a solution they like.


As an alternative to braces, Invisalign Teen® clear aligners are incredibly easy to use. They function like a removable retainer. Nothing fixed in place like there is with braces, allowing your teen to put them on and take them off as needed. This means that they can eat any of their favorite foods and do not need to adjust their diet. This is important because many teens are not only particular about their food, but also want the freedom to just grab a burger with friends or eat pizza at the end-of-season soccer party. They can just take the aligners off and store them in their case while eating. And when it comes to brushing their teeth, very little needs to change. The routine of brushing and flossing is very much the same because the aligners have to be removed before doing them. This is not the case with braces, which requires additional tools and can take up to twenty minutes at a time just to properly brush and floss your teeth.


Because teeth are easier to clean when wearing Invisalign®, there are lesser chances of developing stains or even cavities. On the other hand, when a person wears braces, food can get stuck along the brackets and under the wires. Bacteria and plaque can accumulate in these areas, enabling them to eat away at the teeth and cause decay. To prevent this, a special toothbrush should be used to clean not only the teeth, but also the brackets. Adults find using this brush difficult, so children or teens will have trouble with it as well. This is one reason that Daniel Bishop recommends Invisalign Teen®. By removing the aligners while eating, food won’t get stuck or plaque won’t grow on anything more than the person’s teeth. Since they can be removed before brushing and flossing, oral hygiene is as convenient as it has always been. This scores points for both oral hygiene and the aesthetics of the smile.


While the stigma brought about by wearing braces has mostly been removed, many teens still feel insecure about looking different and standing out. Thus, they do not like the idea of going to school with visible metal braces in their mouths. At Bishop Family Dental, we get it. Regardless of how much their appearance will improve later, some teens will not wear them because of the feelings of insecurity that they will bring right now. We encourage you, as parents, to not force them to have braces because braces require a long-term commitment — and if they are not happy with them on day one, they probably won’t be happy on day 365. Instead, we recommend using Invisalign Teen®. Our Salt Lake City patients love this solution because it is almost invisible. More often than not, people will not even notice the aligners that your teen is wearing. This allows them to confidently smile for their yearbook photo or at group pictures without hiding their teeth. In fact, their improved smile will be more noticeable instead of the device they are using.


Dr. Daniel Bishop can let you know how long the treatment will last when you visit our 84124 dental office. Generally speaking, aligners need to be worn by your teen for about 18 months. The overall treatment time with Invisalign Teen® is about the same as with traditional braces, if not shorter, as long as the aligners are worn for 20 to 22 hours per day. If they wear them less than 20 hours per day, their treatment time could get longer.


At Bishop Family Dental, we have heard many of our Salt Lake City, Utah, patients rave about how comfortable their treatment is. With any moving of the teeth, there is bound to be some soreness. It is inevitable. Just as the adjustment of your teen’s metal braces causes their teeth to be slightly sore for a day or two, so does shifting to a new Invisalign aligner. That is perfectly natural. The difference in comfort, however, is in how the appliances feel during everyday life. Since traditional braces are composed of metal brackets and wires, these metal parts rub against and irritate the cheeks and inside of the mouth. Getting sores or cuts in their mouth from braces is not uncommon. Naturally, this is inconvenient, but is prevented when wearing Invisalign Teen®. The aligners are made of clear plastic and are fabricated to be completely smooth, making your teen cut- and irritation-free during their treatment.

Learn more about Invisalign Teen® as an alternative to braces for teens in Salt Lake City, Utah, by calling 801-274-2500 and scheduling an appointment with our dentist. At Bishop Family Dental, we can answer any questions that you have after examining your teen. If you live in Salt Lake City, Utah, or the 84124 area, we can give them the smile of their dreams.


2120 E 3900 S #102, Salt Lake City, UT 84124

Phone: (801) 274-2500

Office Hours

MON 8:00 am - 5:00 pm

TUE 9:00 am - 6:00 pm

WED 8:00 am - 3:00 pm

THU 8:00 am - 5:00 pm

FRI 9:00 am - 3:00 pm

SAT - SUN Closed

Get in Touch

Email: info@bishopfamilydental.com

Call or Text Us: (801) 274-2500


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