How Does Invisalign Work?

Many people want straighter teeth, but they don’t want the ugly metal brackets and the discomfort that comes with traditional orthodontic work. If you fit this description, you may want to consider Invisalign.

Invisalign aligners are virtually invisible, include no metal and are custom made for your teeth. They work in a series of trays that gradually shift your teeth into place. Each tray is manufactured so that the teeth are slightly straighter than the previous tray. Your teeth will typically move up to 0.25 mm per tray. Every two weeks, you will receive a new set, slowly moving your teeth towards their ideal positions.

Simply pop the trays in and you’re ready to go! No uncomfortable and unsightly brackets necessary. Invisalign aligners are clear and barely noticeable, which makes them perfect for both adults and teens who want a more discreet straightening option.

Sign up for a FREE Invisalign consultation with Creating Smiles 

What to Expect During the Treatment Process

First, take Invisalign’s Smile Assessment to see if Invisalign is the right treatment for you and your smile. Then, you’ll want to make an appointment to set up a consultation with an experienced Invisalign provider, who can determine whether Invisalign will work for your teeth. They can also answer any medical or financial questions you have.

Keep in mind that not every dentist or orthodontist will have professional experience or training with Invisalign. Invisalign-trained providers must attend specialized instructional sessions and participate in ongoing clinical training, so it’s important to visit a provider, like those found at Creating Smiles Dental, who are completely trained to give you your best smile through Invisalign.

After your consultation, your doctor will perform a digital scan to create a customized treatment plan for you using precise 3-D images of your teeth to map out their movements over the course of your treatment. These images are then used to create your custom-made aligners. The smooth, BPA-free plastic is non-irritating and comfortable for constant wear. About every two weeks, you will graduate to your next set of aligners, until your teeth have shifted into their final spots, revealing your most perfect smile!

The aligners straighten teeth through the use of patented thermoplastic design. Invisalign not only controls the force used to straighten teeth, but it also controls the timing of force application. Only a few teeth are moved during each stage — this is determined by your doctor as they map out your individual treatment plan.

Invisalign Treatment Timeline

For adults, the treatment time for an average adult case is around 12 months — this varies, of course, on the severity of each individual case. For teens, treatment time can vary. For all patients, your doctor will work closely with you to develop an individual treatment plan fully customized to your unique needs.

In addition, your Invisalign provider may use attachments to further perfect your smile. In some cases, tooth-colored composite “bumps” may be placed on your teeth that help the aligner grip the teeth better, which can then result in the desired tooth movement.

Invisalign Can Fix a Wide Variety of Dental Problems

Gapped teeth, overbites, underbites, and crowded teeth are just a few of the problems that Invisalign can correct. Besides being unsightly, these problems can affect dental health. Gapped teeth leave gums unprotected and can cause or exacerbate periodontal disease. Overbites and underbites cause stress to the jaw, sometimes leading to painful joint problems. Overly crowded teeth frequently lead to plaque accumulation, as it is difficult to floss effectively and result in cavities forming at these crowded areas. Invisalign addresses all of these problems and more, promoting your best possible oral health.

Invisalign Doesn’t Interfere with Your Daily Life

Wear your Invisalign aligners as you go about your daily routine. Take them out in the morning and evening to clean them. All you do is brush them as you do your teeth! You will also take them out when it’s time to eat, which means you can enjoy all your favorite foods. Nothing will get stuck in wires or brackets. In fact, Invisalign keeps teeth cleaner than traditional braces because you brush as normal. Invisalign is also perfect for people who play contact sports, especially those that require mouthguards. Simply remove the aligners while playing and replace them when you’re done.

More Benefits of Invisalign

In addition to the above, Invisalign allows you to view what your smile will look like when treatment is complete, even at the start of your treatment plan. No longer will you have to wonder what the end result will be — you can see it yourself.

Also, unlike metal braces, Invisalign doesn’t rub or irritate your mouth like wires and brackets can. This means you don’t have to worry about applying wax to irritating brackets because the inside of your cheeks are scratched, bleeding and sore — this simply isn’t a problem with Invisalign.

While the first few days of each treatment stage can be a little uncomfortable (often described as a feeling of pressure), Invisalign is far easier to deal with than traditional metal braces as far as pain and anxiety goes.

After Invisalign Treatment

Once you’ve reached your ultimate goal — a great smile — with Invisalign, your doctor will recommend retainers (this is the same whether you’ve gone through traditional braces or invisible aligners). Retainers are necessary because teeth can unfortunately shift back into their pre-treatment position.

Invisalign recommends Vivera retainers. They are made with the same state-of-the-art technology used to create Invisalign aligners, and since they’re custom made from an impression or scan of your teeth, the fit is perfect and the retainers are far more comfortable than traditional ones. Also, the material used is 30 percent stronger than other clear retainer materials, which not only keeps your teeth in line, but the retainer is less likely to crack or break.

Speed Up Your Treatment with PROPEL

The PROPEL VPRO5 system is a procedure that stimulates the bone, promoting more rapid movement. Patients who add PROPEL to their Invisalign treatments need fewer dentist visits and report decreased sensitivity when wearing a new Invisalign tray. Using PROPEL could reduce your treatment time by more than half!

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