If you were one of the unlucky ones, you remember painful visits to the orthodontist in your teens. The sticky leather chair, picking out your colored rubber bands (orange and black for Halloween, duh), and lots and lots of metal.
It’s safe to say that getting your teeth straightened hasn’t been fun, or even easy. While Invisalign has been a leader in the invisible braces game for awhile now, there are more and more options popping up that allow you to get straight teeth in the comfort of your own home – all while saving you upwards of $4,000.
Let’s take a deeper look into how invisible braces work, as well as some of the most popular options — Candid vs Byte vs Invisalign — to see which option could be best for your smile and wallet.
How do invisible braces work to straighten your teeth?
So you want a better smile. Luckily, with just a few clicks (and no visit to the orthodontist’s office) you can start the journey. Whether you’re opting for Invisalign or one of their newer competitors, like Byte or Candid, the steps to a straight smile are mostly the same.
1. Determine if you’re a good fit for invisible braces.
Depending on what changes you want to make to your smile, as well as your overall dental health, you’ll want to make sure that invisible braces are right for you. Most companies have a quiz or ask you take photos of your smile to help ensure you’re a good fit for aligners – and Byte, Invisalign and Candid all have licensed orthodontists involved, either online or in person, so you can ask questions to make sure this is the right way for your to straighten your smile. Of course, you can always ask your dentist at your normal visit.
2. Get a model of your teeth.
Once you’re ready to take the plunge, you’ll have to get a model of your teeth taken through a puddy impression kit or digital scan.
3. Customize your smile.
Whichever company you choose, you’ll have the chance to work with an orthodontist – online, or in some cases in person – to develop a treatment plan and customize your smile. That gap in your two front teeth doesn’t have to go anywhere if you don’t want it to.
4. Wear your aligners.
You’ll receive your aligners either in batches or as a full set. You’ll follow the instructions for how long to wear each aligner – time varies from 7 days to a few weeks – before moving along to the next set. Most patients wear their aligners for 20-23 hours a day to make sure they stay on their treatment plan.
5. Flash your new smile! (And wear those retainers.)
Most treatments take anywhere from 3 months to a year to complete. Once your aligner treatment is complete, you’ll wear retainers to follow to ensure your smile stays in place.
How are invisible braces from Candid, Byte, and Invisalign different than traditional braces?
The biggest difference in traditional vs invisible braces is the process in which your teeth are straightened. With braces, you’re using metal brackets and wires to mold and shape your teeth. Invisible braces use a set of BPA-free plastic aligners that gradually move your teeth as the molds get closer and closer to your desired smile.
When it comes to convenience, teeth aligners are much easier to manage and look a lot better than braces do, making them a perfect choice for anyone who wants to continue their day-to-day life without feeling self conscious about straightening their teeth.
Also, remember how you always used to get that piece of corn stuck in your braces? That’s not a problem with invisible braces. (Were we even allowed to eat corn when we had braces? I can’t remember. But corn is delicious.)
Which is more affordable: Candid, Invisalign or Byte aligners?
While Byte, Candid, and Invisalign all offer a relatively similar type of invisible braces and have somewhat similar process, it really comes down to how much you want to pay and how soon you want to see results. So who is more affordable, Invisalign, Byte or Candid?
With similar pricing structures and no need for office visits, Candid and Byte may come out ahead for those looking to save time and money. While Candid customers have reported successful results and positive customer service reviews, Byte is introducing a new technology, the HyperByte™ vibration tool, to cut your treatment time in half compared to Candid.
Neither requires you to actually go see an orthodontist in person (although you with Candid you can choose to go to one of their 25 offices for a scan, or do it all from home by yourself with their starter kit) – everything is handled online by their orthodontists.
Not having to actually go to a waiting room and hang out listening to the smooth jazz station while someone pokes in your mouth is a big difference vs. Invisalign, which requires you to go see a mouth doctor who has received specialized training. Depending on how much you value your time, this could be a big hidden cost difference between these solutions.
While all treatment times will vary in the end based on your teeth, use this comparison chart to compare Candid, Byte, and Invisalign to see which might be the best solution for your needs and budget.