Many people dream of a perfect smile with aligned teeth that can boost their confidence. That’s why it is pretty common for people to decide to enhance their smile through orthodontic treatment.
The first step towards that aesthetic goal begins with a consultation with your dentist. An evaluation will be performed of the present state of your smile and dental health to determine if you are a good candidate for Invisalign treatment.
Invisalign is a very popular type of orthodontic treatment which uses clear aligners. People often choose it over traditional braces for all its benefits.
It can help with a variety of dental issues, such as:
- Crowded teeth
- Open bites
- Gaps between teeth
- Other malocclusions such as underbite, overbite, and crossbite
- Facilitating easy flossing and cleaning for oral health
What is Invisalign?
Invisalign is a form of orthodontic treatment that uses special dental trays called clear aligners instead of traditional braces. They might look like removable retainers. However, these clear aligners apply pressure to your teeth to slowly move them into the desired position. Therefore, they work in the same way as traditional braces.
What are the Benefits?
Aside from the obvious benefit of allowing you to achieve your dream smile, there are other benefits that you may enjoy by choosing this type of orthodontic treatment, such as:
Even though they may not be invisible, these clear trays fit tightly on your teeth and are much less noticeable than conventional braces.
These are removable plastic trays. You won’t have to deal with brackets or wires that may make your gums sore. Also, you can instantly remove them to eat.
You don’t have to worry about tartar build-up on the brackets or wires. You can remove them to brush and floss your teeth normally. This can maintain your gums healthy while you undergo orthodontic treatment.
No food restrictions
Since there are no brackets, you can eat anything you want without worrying a bracket might come off. Furthermore, the aligners won’t suffer any damage as you are meant to remove them before eating.
Unlike traditional braces, if you get Invisalign treatment, you won’t have to go to appointments to fix a broken wire or bond a bracket that fell off.
Who is eligible for Invisalign?
Almost anyone eligible for traditional braces can undergo Invisalign treatment. Especially people that want to make a change in their smile but are self-conscious about wearing braces.
Invisalign is also excellent for patients who want the benefits of having their teeth perfectly aligned and don’t want to deal with gum soreness or inconvenience that brackets and wires cause. Usually, Invisalign treatment is recommended for adults of all ages and teens. However, there are some cases where younger teens who still have mixed dentition can be eligible.
Orthodontic treatment with clear aligners has been typically used in patients with mild or moderate cases of crowding teeth or malocclusions. Therefore, leaving the more complex cases to traditional braces.
However, the latest generation of Invisalign added the innovation of attachments. This has made it possible to treat complex cases with Invisalign aligners successfully.
Certain situations could indicate that clear aligners might not be for you, such as:
- You cannot commit to using the trays for 20 to 22 hours daily.
- You are prone to losing things. Invisalign trays are clear and very unnoticeable. They might be easy to misplace If you take them off often.
What is the process like?
Usually, the process starts with a consultation with the orthodontist. In this appointment, the dentist will take impressions of your mouth. These will be used to create 3D images of your mouth. The orthodontist will use these images to design a personalized treatment plan with the help of Invisalign’s software.
Afterward, a series of aligners based on your mouth impression is created and delivered to your dental office. Your dentist will give you a set of trays and instructions for their use.
The set of trays must be used in the specified order. Usually, you need to wear your Invisalign trays for 20 to 22 hours a day and switch to the following tray of the series after one or two weeks.
Each clear aligner will slightly shift your teeth, applying enough pressure to move your teeth to the desired place gradually. Generally, it can take anywhere from 6 to 24 months to complete the treatment.
Every case is different. The complexity of your case and the commitment to wear the trays may affect how long the treatment takes to finish. Finally, once the treatment ends, you must wear a retainer to keep the results achieved.