How Does Invisalign Work?

Orthodontic treatment has come along way with the development of clear aligners. Invisalign takes the discomfort of metal brackets and wires out of orthodontia and allows you to continue smiling all throughout treatment.

How Does Invisalign Work?

Invisalign uses a series of custom made clear plastic trays, or aligners, to gradually shift teeth into position. Trays are changed out every 10 to 14 days and your dentist may be able to provide you with multiple sets allowing you to change your trays on your own without visiting the office.

Some treatments do require the use of attachments on the front of your teeth but they are tooth colored and not as noticeable as a metal bracket. The attachments allow your teeth to rotate and even make slight vertical movements.

During Treatment

Before you begin treatment, your dentist will take impressions, pictures, and x-rays to ensure that you are a candidate for Invisalign. These are all sent to Invisalign so that your treatment case can be created for you to view with your dentist in their office. This will include a computerized animation of your treatment process and your end results. The animation is a great benefit since you will be able to see how your teeth will look once you are done.

During case presentation, it is important that you ask any questions and express any concerns that you may have. If you have financial constraints, this would also be the time to discuss any financial arrangements that could be made. It’s also important to determine your insurance benefits for orthodontic treatment before beginning.

Over the course of treatment, you will have multiple trays that are changed every 10 to 14 days. Some trays will require visits to your dentist to make sure you are progressing correctly. Your Invisalign trays will be made out of a BPA free clear plastic and are to be worn for at least 22 hours a day. Once you have completed your treatment, you will be given final retainers to be worn nightly. These will likely need to be replaced every other year or so, more often if they become loose. These retainers are necessary as teeth want to shift back to their original place.

Timeline of Treatment

Every case is different, some patients are able to complete their treatment within six months and others may take up to 18 months.

Benefits of Invisalign

Invisalign is considerably more comfortable than traditional metal braces. The plastic trays are smooth and comfortable and will not irritate your cheeks and gums. If you do experience some irritation, your Dentist can adjust the tray, do not try to adjust them yourself!

Some patients experience a small list as they get used to wearing their trays. The fact that the trays can be removed for eating and for oral hygiene is a huge benefit and helps reduce the likelihood of decay and staining. They are also a better option for patients who are involved in contact sports where metal brackets could cause cuts in the mouth.

Who should consider Invisalign?

Crowded teeth, gap teeth, and a bad bite are all reasons to consider orthodontic treatment. Crowded teeth are harder to clean and therefore or more susceptible to plaque and bacteria buildup which quickly leads to periodontal disease. Malocclusion, or a bad bite, can lead to fractured teeth or jaw problems.

Discuss Invisalign with your dentist to see if you are a candidate and would benefit from Invisalign clear aligner therapy.

More on Invisalign : How Much Does Invisalign Cost?