A beautiful smile is one of the most critical aspects of an attractive face, which can be achieved through various methods. Each method has its characteristics and positive and negative aspects. Although orthodontics and lamination are used for beautification and teeth restoration, each has certain applications under specific conditions.
These methods should not be compared in terms of specialty because each technique is used for different purposes. However, due to the unawareness of people, one may suggest lamination instead of orthodontics. For some patients, beauty is more important than oral health, and they choose a more effortless and cheaper solution. The difference between orthodontics and lamination is undoubtedly a critical issue, but these methods should not be selected according to their costs. Before perceiving the difference between these methods, they are first described.
Orthodontics is the most reliable method to align the crooked teeth that are not correctly placed in their locations. No other technique can substitute orthodontics; it can modify the smile in cosmetic dentistry in which the teeth are aligned, and their color and shape are uniformed with laminate materials.
The relatively long treatment period of orthodontics is the main disadvantage of this method, encouraging patients to prefer other methods. The treatment period of orthodontics is about 1.5-2 years. On the other hand, lamination is a method that will affect patients for the rest of their lives. For example, the laminates may be discolored within two to ten years, detached, or cracked, obligating patients to visit the dentist for restoration.
Lamination is mainly a cosmetic rather than a therapeutic method. If the teeth are small or are stained or discolored, laminates or veneers are the best restoration options. For example, in patients with small teeth with additional space between them, lamination can be considered an easy restoration option.
Sometimes due to slight misalignment or other reasons, orthodontics is not performed, and the smile can be beautified only by adding a new layer over the teeth. In contrast to orthodontics which takes about 1.5-2 years, lamination is performed in only 1 or 2 sessions.
Cost of orthodontics
The exact cost of orthodontics cannot be determined until the consultation session and choosing the treatment plan. The cost is affordable and varies according to the complexities. The treatment duration is longer in patients with more severe problems than those with fewer complexities. During the consultation session, the orthodontics cost is estimated, and the details are explained. The factors affecting the orthodontics cost include:
- Treatment initiation time: The sooner the patient seeks counseling, the easier and cheaper the treatment will be; because the treatment plan is determined according to the growth pattern.
- The complexity of the problem: The extent of work performed for dental wiring is the main factor determining the orthodontics cost.
- Duration of treatment.
- Number of visits.
- Patient age: The cost of orthodontics will be higher in adults.
- Location of orthodontics treatment: The cost of orthodontics in the suburban areas is averagely less than in the central areas of cities.
- The dentist who performs orthodontics.
- Other orthodontics equipment: In addition to wires and brackets, other equipment is also used in orthodontics, including functional devices, space maintainers, and headgear which is one of the most widely used devices. Headgear may be required to correct the gap between teeth. All of these devices will incur additional costs.
- Dental insurance: The cost of orthodontics may be slightly lower in patients with dental insurance covering dental treatment costs.
- Types of orthodontics: The type of brackets used for wiring is another factor that affects orthodontics’ cost.
- Metal brackets: They are the cheapest type of brackets.
- Ceramic or plastic brackets: The ceramic brackets are more expensive than metal types.
- Lingual brackets: The cost of orthodontics in this method is usually high because of more work required to manufacture and attach these brackets.
- Invisible brackets: The cost of orthodontics in this method is higher than other types. These brackets are made of crystals, making them almost colorless and invisible.
Cost of lamination
Teeth lamination is performed with two different types of ceramic laminate and composite laminate made of unique materials such as ceramic or porcelain and composite. The quality and price of these laminates vary based on their constituents.
The cost of lamination depends on the extent of tooth damage, the work performed for treatment, and the specialist skill. The factors affecting the cost of teeth lamination include:
- The amount of tooth shaving (shaving minimum tooth and preserving tooth enamel).
- The dentist’s time for tooth shaving (for example, shaving of the canine takes more time).
- The precision required for tooth shaving without damaging the tooth.
- The symmetry of the teeth after shaving.
- Considering the shaving type according to the laminate type that is specific for each person.
- The impression material for maximum accuracy and the setting time should be considered for each material to prevent size change (size change prevents the manufacturing of an ideal and perfectly matched laminate).
- The color transparency and combination in the laminate and the natural luminance and color of the laminate look like a tooth.
The most crucial difference between orthodontics and lamination is their costs which are higher in the former. However, orthodontics is a permanent treatment performed only once in a lifetime, after which the teeth do not return to their original position. However, in other treatments, such as lamination, the teeth may return to their original shape. Therefore, orthodontics is more economical. However, the dentist’s viewpoint is the first and last word for selecting the treatment method.