Sponsored Post: Metal Braces or Invisalign?

By the time I was in 5th grade, it became extremely obvious that I was going to need some sort of orthodontic work done, especially for my upper jaw. My teeth were so crowded, that there wasn’t much room for my teeth to come in. I had to wear an expander and spacers before I could even get my braces put on.

There are other known “mouth” related issues on both my side and the kid’s dad’s side (and no, I don’t mean anything ugly by that!), so I have watched carefully as each child has grown.

Abbie’s potential issues were apparent early on. Even as a little girl, she seemed to have a bit of a crossbite, and as her permanent teeth have begun growing in, I’ve been unable to deny that some sort of orthodontic work will need to be done.

So, earlier this week we arrived at the UAB School of Dentistry to have her (and her brother!) examined and discuss a plan of action for them both.

Basically… there is work to be done. 

I’m a child of the 70’s and 80’s, so of course, I had the big clunky metal (OUCH!!) braces. But I was lucky: after just over 1.5 ys in braces, I was able to start 8th grade with a nice straight set of teeth.

I remember the pain, discomfort and issues associated with them: the sore teeth, the wires poking out and digging into the sides of my mouth, the food that would get stuck in them (eww!), the (temporary) end of my chewing gum habit…

Who would want to put there child through that if there were a better option?

That is where Invisalign Teen comes in:

“Invisalign Teen is a clear, plastic aligner therapy that was developed with leading orthodontists who understand the active lifestyles, unique treatment and compliance needs of teens. An effective alternative to metal braces, the new Invisalign Teen product combines the benefits of the proven Invisalign Full system with new features like blue Compliance Indicators that are designed to gradually fade as the aligner is worn, Eruption Tabs that accommodate the growth of secondary molars, and other features that address clinical needs common to teen patients.

Invisalign Teen treatment is ideal for busy parents because there are never any emergency appointments from broken wires or brackets. And you spend less time at the orthodontist’s office, with fewer appointments and less chair time for uncomfortable tightenings.”

emphasis mine

Seriously? Less hassle, fewer appointments, and features that were designed with teen patients in mind?

I did a thorough scouring of the Invisalign site and other information that was made available to me, and was amazed by how ridiculously easy it all looks.

Here is some of what I learned, specifically pertaining to the Invisalign Teen aligners:

  • Invisalign treatment consist of several smooth, comfortable removable plastic aligners, that look very similar to a teeth cleaning tray.
  • Your teen will receive a series aligners from the orthodontist, approximately every six weeks.
  • The aligners should be worn 20 to 22 hours per day but they can be removed for eating, brushing, and flossing.
  • Invisalign Teen differs from the adult version due to three new features that were designed specifically for a patient in the teen age-group:

1) “Compliance Indicator” which allows parents to ensure that their children are wearing the aligners for the proper amount of time.
2) “Eruption Tab” to accommodate for erupting teeth (teeth that are not in yet or partially in).
3) “Power Ridges” “are incorporated into aligners designed to help achieve certain difficult tooth movements”. (I had to dig deeper to understand what this meant, but essentially, the ridges create a better bond that allows for more effective straightening results due to better torque at the root, as the teeth move)

  • And because we know how easily kids misplace things, Invisalign Teen allows for six free replacement aligners.

Invisalign  makes a product for adults as well. The clear, nearly invisible look is what makes them especially appealing for adults.

I’m not sure of the route we will take, as we have just started this journey. While the cost can be comparable, since our insurance does not cover orthodontic work, cost will be a huge factor and influencer in our final decision.

But how amazing is it that we now have OPTIONS when it comes to teeth straightening?

Hopefully, one day, no one will have to suffer through being called a “Metal Mouth” or “Tinsel Teeth” again.

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post and compensation was provided by SITS Girls and Invisalign via Gold PR. The opinions expressed herein are mine and are not indicative of the opinions or positions of the post sponsors.


  1. http://Lisa%20Bryant says

    Hi saw your post on the UAB school of dentistry and looked in to it thinking of taking my son down for braces but not familiar with how it all works would love to have you answer some question if you have the time,like prices and all thanks so much hope to hear from you soon..

  2. http://Karla says


    My kids have been going to the UAB School of Dentistry for the last year and we have been very pleased.

    The pricing is a max of ~$2900 for braces and the pre-braces screening and work. It could be cheaper than that, depending on the amount and degree of work your child needs.

    Not sure if that makes sense or not? Feel free to keep asking questions! I’m happy to tell you what I know.

  3. I have used invisalign myself and LOVE it. Great post.

  4. http://Monique says

    Did you have to pay the money all at once or could they put you on a monthly payment plan?

    • http://Karla says

      Hi Monique — We haven’t done the Invisalign yet, but from everything I’ve read, there are many dentists/orthodontists who take monthly payments.
      I’m sure it varies, but there are many out there who do.

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