What is Invisalign®?
Invisalign is a modern solution to straightening your teeth that doesn’t involve any brackets, wires, or fixed appliances.
It is a customized orthodontic treatment plan that involves the use of a series of clear plastic trays that slowly guide your teeth into place. Your final outcome will be predicted and reached by an orthodontist that’s responsible for the construction and execution of your treatment plan.
These custom aligners come in a series and have to be periodically switched out. Your orthodontist will supply you with a new set of aligners every two weeks.
What Are The Benefits of Invisalign®?
While everyone will experience benefits and perks that are specific to them, Invisalign has a variety of benefits shared commonly among patients.
One of the most popular benefits is the transparency of the clear aligners. Patients love how discreetly their treatment can remain while getting all the benefits of traditional braces. Just remember to keep your aligners clean so they stay clear of any debris or build-up from foods and drinks.
Another great benefit is that Invisalign is completely removable. This eliminates the need to worry about food getting irretrievably trapped, having to limit your diet, or experiencing any discomfort while eating. Unlike braces, you won’t have to cut any foods out of your usual diet—just make sure you clean your teeth thoroughly before returning your aligners to your teeth.
With Invisalign, you can be sure you won’t miss out on any social occasions. Because your aligners can be easily removed for eating and drinking, you’re still able to go out for lunches and dinners with friends, have a few cocktails, play sports, and feel included in other fun activities. There’s nothing you can’t do!
Invisalign can also be more comfortable than traditional braces. Because you don’t have any brackets and wires to worry about, over time and once the adjustment period is over, Invisalign will fit comfortably and naturally. You’ll hardly know it’s there.
What Does Invisalign® Treat?
Invisalign can treat a variety of bite issues, both minor and severe. The most common bites include:
An underbite is when the lower teeth extend further than the upper teeth, creating cosmetic and medical issues.
Due to this misalignment of the jaw, an underbite can trigger pain and cause difficulties with chewing and speaking.
An overbite is the opposite of the underbite, when the upper teeth extend too far over the lower. This creates similar problems with chewing, speaking, and jaw pain.
With an ideal bite and jaw alignment, the upper set of teeth falls a little outside the lower teeth. When they don’t meet correctly in this way, it’s considered a crossbite.
Gaps or spaces between teeth can be both a cosmetic and medical issue. Gaps may bring about self-consciousness and a lack of confidence in social or professional settings. Gapped teeth can also be a concern for dental hygiene.
Many people have teeth that simply grow in crooked, twisted, or with overlap. Even if these teeth aren’t posing significant threats to your dental health, they can still be fixed through a method of orthodontic treatment.
Crowding occurs when there isn’t enough space for new adult teeth to erupt properly. Without the proper room to protrude safely and easily, adult teeth can erupt wherever there’s extra space, even if that space isn’t able to accommodate them.
A deep bite is the term for when the upper front teeth overlap the lower front teeth to an unusual degree, potentially even causing the lower teeth to impact the roof of the mouth. A deep bite can cause injury or affect the shape of the face.
Whether the need is cosmetic or medical,
your orthodontist will be able to determine if you’re a good candidate for clear aligners.
Types of Invisalign®
Invisalign For Teens
Invisalign has many benefits for teenagers. Orthodontic treatment can be socially difficult at this age, and the inconspicuousness of the clear aligners helps boost the confidence of your teen.
Invisalign can help straighten their teeth without interrupting their social life. Parties and outings with friends will be virtually uninterrupted, as their aligners can be quickly removed for brief periods to enjoy food, drinks, and snacks at the movies. Your teen also won’t have to give up contact sports or other physical activities they enjoy.
Invisalign for teens will also come with blue compliance indicators, so you and their orthodontist will know for sure they’re being worn as much as they’re required to be. As the aligners are worn, the blue dots on the aligners will fade to indicate patient compliance. If at one of the necessary check-ups their orthodontist notices the blue dots are not worn away, they may have a talk with your teen about the importance of wearing their aligners for at least 22 hours per day. You can also use this system yourself to monitor their treatment and ensure it’s going smoothly.
Invisalign For Adults
It’s never too late to get a smile that you feel proud to show off. While more and more adults are choosing to wear braces later in life, Invisalign allows you to get the same level of orthodontic treatment with maximum discretion.
Adults are likely to follow their treatment plan, be committed to attaining their results quicker, and get the most out of their investment, so treatment is often a breeze.
How Do I Get Invisalign® Treatment?
Qualifying for Invisalign treatment is easier than ever. If you’re interested in seeing what clear aligners can do for you, all you have to do is call our office to set up a consultation with one of our friendly and helpful receptionists!
During your consultation, you will discuss your concerns, wants, needs, and expectations with our orthodontist. We’ll figure out what brings you into our office, what your smile goals are, and how we can help you achieve them through a custom treatment plan specifically tailored to your needs.
After we’ve listened to your concerns and fully understood what you’re looking for, we can get started with the exam. We’ll take detailed photographs and X-rays of your teeth and jaw so we have a full view of any orthodontic issues and how they’re affecting your overall dental health. Once we’ve gathered this data, we can talk to you about the next steps and what treatment may look like. All of this information will also help us determine whether you’re a suitable candidate for Invisalign, or whether another route of orthodontic treatment would better suit you. It’s easy to qualify for clear aligners, but some conditions can require traditional braces.
If you’re wondering if Invisalign is right for you, don’t hesitate to set up a consultation with our practice to find out. It’s absolutely free!
The Invisalign® Process
Like all other forms of orthodontic treatment, your Invisalign journey will begin with a consultation at our practice. This consultation serves a variety of purposes, all in the interests of us getting to know you, your needs, and your dental history.
The consultation is going to help us determine if Invisalign is right for you with the help of our diagnosis and your input. We’ll be able to assess your smile and bite in-person to ensure clear aligners will be the right choice for you, and you’ll be able to weigh in on how comfortable you feel with this method of treatment. Invisalign is great for treating dental irregularities such as gaps and spacing, minor crowding, and underbites and overbites, but may not be the best method of treatment for more severe cases. This is where we come in to help guide you in the decision-making process in a completely unbiased way.
If you’ve weighed the pros and cons alongside us and decided to go ahead with Invisalign treatment, the next step of your journey will begin. We’ll then construct your custom treatment plan and collect the detailed data we need to create your trays from scratch.
Creating Your Invisalign
We’ll start with taking impressions of your teeth, detailed digital X-rays, and a series of photographs from all angles in order to best capture every issue so we know exactly what kind of tray to construct. This process takes about one hour, and may consist of a series of questions about your dental history or current state as we move forward.
One of the best and most unique things about opting for Invisalign treatment is you can now see the positive effects it will have in real time. Our software allows our patients to view their treatment plan at every stage so they know exactly how their teeth will move and shift at every point to form their new smile. We can show you how your teeth are going to look one month into Invisalign treatment, six months in, one year in, and so on. Keep in mind that while these predictions are remarkably accurate, your teeth can do unexpected things. We’re prepared to monitor and adjust whenever necessary.
Once you’ve viewed your treatment plan and feel satisfied, we’ll send all the data to our manufacturers to have your aligners created. The manufacturers will use all the images, impressions, and x-rays to accurately and concisely put together your custom aligners, which will be shipped back to us as soon as possible.
Receiving and Wearing Your Aligners
Don’t worry, we don’t just hand you your aligners when you come in and send you on your way! Before we give you your first set to wear, the orthodontist taking care of you and your treatment plan will demonstrate proper care, how to put in and remove them, and answer any and all questions you may have. This quick appointment will prepare you for what’s to come in your treatment and help to reassure you that you’re in good hands.
Now you just have to wear your Invisalign aligners! Make sure you’re wearing them for at least 22 hours per day to get the best results possible and stay on track. You’ll switch aligners roughly every two weeks, or as otherwise recommended by your orthodontist. Remember to never make your own adjustments to your treatment plan, and always have a conversation with your orthodontist if you have any questions or concerns about any aspect of your treatment. We’re always just a phone call or email away!
Once your orthodontist has decided your smile is perfect, it’s time to end your treatment! Because you’ve seen your teeth at every stage and have come along for the entire ride, you may not notice a huge change, or any change at all, in your smile. But don’t be dismayed: you’ll get the full effect once we show you your before and after pictures! Then you’ll see how much your smile has truly transformed.