What is Invisalign?
Invisalign is a revolutionary cosmetic dental treatment that uses a series of removable invisible braces or clear braces to gradually straighten your teeth over a period of 9 to 18 months.
Invisalign uses clear, medical-grade plastic aligners that are practically invisible, to gradually and efficiently straighten your teeth without any heavy metal brackets. It’s also completely removable, so that you can take your aligners out to eat, brush and floss as normal.
It is a far more comfortable and a lot less intrusive method than traditional orthodontic treatments and it will help you achieve the smile of your dreams without anyone noticing you’re undergoing a dental treatment.
- BENEFITS OF INVISALIGN
- HOW INVISALIGN WORKS
- IS INVISALIGN BETTER THAN TRADITIONAL BRACES?
- HOW MUCH DOES INVISALIGN COST?
- WHAT IS THE LENGTH OF INVISALIGN TREATMENT?
- WHAT CAN INVISALIGN CORRECT?
- IS INVISALIGN PAINFUL?
- EATING HABITS WITH INVISALIGN
- CAN YOU WHITEN TEETH WITH INVISALIGN?
- WHAT HAPPENS IF YOU DON’T WEAR INVISALIGN FOR A DAY?
- HOW OFTEN SHOULD I BE WEARING MY INVISALIGN ALIGNERS?
BENEFITS OF INVISALIGN?
Invisalign has many extensive benefits over standard metal braces, some of which are:
- Removability: One of the most substantial and most apparent benefits of Invisalign compared to traditional braces is that the trays are removable. This allows you to eat without getting food stuck in your teeth.
- Improved overall appearance: Many patients initially prefer Invisalign as the trays are clear. This can be ideal for adults looking to straighten their teeth but have had past hesitation due to the unusual appearance of metal braces in mature years. With Invisalign trays through DFY Dental, many patients have noted that people rarely notice when they are being worn.
- Far more comfortable: Invisalign treatments can be quite a bit more comfortable than metal braces. With the trays, there are no brackets that can cause sores to develop in the mouth.
HOW INVISALIGN WORKS?
The aligners in the Invisalign apply consistent, controlled force to individual teeth, gently moving them into their new desired position. Invisalign differs from traditional braces in that it actually controls the amount of force applied to each tooth and this reduces the length of the treatment in comparison with traditional orthodontics.
During your initial consultation, Dr Yassmin will explore your goals and needs to determine if Invisalign is the appropriate treatment for you. Should this be the case, Dr Yassmin will then take detailed impressions of your teeth and create a computerised 3D image of your smile. This will help him determine the precise movements needed to create the best results.
Your custom-made invisible braces will then be crafted according to your individual treatment plan. The number of aligners you will need depends on your needs and goals however, a full Invisalign treatment typically involves the use of 18 to 36 aligners.
IS INVISALIGN BETTER THAN TRADITIONAL BRACES?
Both traditional braces and Invisalign work towards two common goals: Improvements in oral health and straighter teeth. This being the case, what causes them to differ, or for one to be “better” than the other? The focus for this is in the processes used to straighten teeth.
WHAT ARE TRADITIONAL BRACES?
Metal braces are almost always what is pictured when thinking of “braces.” With these, metal brackets are secured to enamel in each tooth. Then, wires are placed between the brackets, which assist in moving teeth over time.
Sometimes, the wires placed on these brackets can be color-matched to your tooth enamel, making them less noticeable.
HOW DOES INVISALIGN COMPARE?
Invisalign provides patients the option to reap the rewards of braces with considerable discretion. As the namesake alludes, these braces are meant to appear invisible.
Invisalign utilizes aligner trays that are manufactured from high-quality BPA-free plastic. These trays gradually and subtly shift the teeth. The plastic is comfortable and smooth, and the wearing process is a breeze. Additionally, instead of using a mold, Invisalign uses three-dimensional images of your teeth to configure these aligner trays with the perfect fit.
HOW MUCH DOES INVISALIGN COST?
In many situations, the cost of treatment with Invisalign mirrors the cost of traditional braces. Your dentist will determine what your costs will be. These costs will typically be based on the complexity of your situation and the number of aligners required.
WHAT IS THE LENGTH OF INVISALIGN TREATMENT?
Treatment lengths are dependent on both the patient’s individual needs and the recommendations from the dentist. For Invisalign, the trays should be worn for 22 to 24 hours per day, for between six and 18 months. However, if the patient has far more complex dental issues, the timeframe may extend, or metal braces may be the most effective option to start.
WHAT CAN INVISALIGN CORRECT?
When you are looking to straighten your teeth without the need for unsightly rubber bands and metal wiring, Invisalign is the perfect, modern alternative. Invisible braces can fix a wide variety of dental issues, from milder cases of slightly crooked teeth to far more significant oral issues like over/underbite and malocclusion.
While it is true that treating with Invisalign may not be able to solve all dental bite-related issues, some customized Invisalign trays work wonders on some of the most problematic dental conditions, including those below.
If you are affected by smaller jaw bones, there may not be ample room for your teeth to sit in your mouth comfortably. When this happens, it can lead to severe overcrowding.
Overcrowding left unaddressed can lead to severely crooked teeth. It can be significantly problematic on both your smile and your bite pattern. Additionally, overcrowded teeth can make it far more difficult to properly clean, leading to the accumulation of plaque. In turn, this can increase the risk of gum disease and tooth decay. Invisalign trays work to spread out teeth overcrowding, alleviating these issues.
Gaps between the teeth can appear either in one part of the mouth (typically the front) or throughout the entire bite. One of the most common causes of this is the abnormal growth of the jaw bone. Another reason is tooth loss, which generally leads to the surrounding teeth to shift, compensating for extra space.
Apart from having a less aesthetic smile, gapped teeth lead to gum problems in almost all cases. This can include periodontal pockets, as well as an increased change for periodontal diseases. The gums rely on the shielding effects of the teeth. Gaps lead to vulnerabilities, and Invisalign treatments solve this issue.
Underbite occurs when the lower front teeth protrude out past the upper front teeth. This is caused by underdevelopment of the upper jaw, overdevelopment of the lower jaw, or some combination of both. Additionally, missing upper teeth can lead to the formation of an underbite.
Underbites can lead to difficulty chewing, as the ailment prevents molars and front teeth from functioning correctly. This can also lead to accelerated tooth wear and can cause harrowing issues with the joints in the jaw. Invisalign works to move the teeth into proper formation, alleviating the symptoms of an underbite.
What is known as an overbite is in almost all cases an “overjet.” These occur when upper teeth bite over lower teeth. Causes for overbite include poor oral hygiene, genetic issues, and overdevelopment of bone structures.
Overbites can make chewing difficult, and also tend to irritate the gums. Unnatural placement of the teeth also wears down lower teeth and can lead to excruciating problems with the joints in the jaw.
Crossbite occurs when crooked jaws cause misalignment of teeth. This, in turn, causes one or multiple upper teeth to contact the inside of the lower teeth. This can happen anywhere in the mouth. Common issues that are associated with crossbites include gum disease, teeth wear, and bone loss.
Open bite occurs when teeth fail to make contact when the jaw is closed. Often, the front teeth are the ones that fail to make contact. This is typically caused by abnormal jaw structures or excessive thumb-sucking in childhood.
The problems of an open bite can cause chewing to become painful and difficult. Additionally, it can lead to speech impairment, as well as an increased risk of TMJ.
IS INVISALIGN PAINFUL?
Your teeth are going to be slowly but physically moving around, so Invisalign is never going to be completely pain-free. However, it is typically far less painful than competing metal brace alternatives. Additionally, much like other orthodontic treatment options, the pain will fade once the teeth have become adjusted to that set of aligners.
The dull pain will often derive from brand new aligners being utilized. This soreness comes from aligners that press against the teeth to encourage movement. Also, there will be mild pain coming with aligners being in the mouth in the first place.
Finally, the edges of your Invisalign aligners are not sharp. However, they can irritate the insides of your lips and your gums as your mouth acclimates to the usage. Over the first few weeks, your mouth will adjust to wearing these aligners, developing the callouses that will work to prevent irritation.
When the time comes to switch out your first set for the next set, your mouth will be fully adjusted to wearing the Invisalign trays, and this peripheral pain will disappear. Throughout the process, it’s important to remember the big picture. These trays are shifting your teeth, slowly but surely, into a straighter, more beautiful smile.
EATING HABITS WITH INVISALIGN?
One of the most appealing benefits of Invisalign is that it will straighten your teeth without the dietary restrictions present in traditional metal braces. Aligners can be removed (for a short time), so you can eat whatever foods you would like without the negative repercussions associated with braces.
However, there are eating habits that you will want to keep in mind when progressing through the Invisalign process to ensure that your treatment goes as planned. For some, these eating habits can be difficult, but the benefits are worth the changes.
CUT DOWN ON COFFEE IN THE MORNING
While it is okay if coffee is your morning dose of energy, try not to sip on coffee all day long with Invisalign aligners in. If you fail to remove the trays, you will quickly notice staining. Remember, any food or drink item that can stain teeth will stain aligners far faster. Water is your friend when wearing Invisalign.
BRUSHING IS KEY
You are going to want to ensure that your aligners have a clean space to live. For this reason, after a snack or meal, it’s crucial to brush your teeth.Remember, enamel and aligners get cozy, so both surfaces need to be as clean as possible.
Much like with metal braces, with Invisalign, gum is entirely off limits. The stickiness of chewing gum will impair the orthodontic process. When eaten with aligners in, they will get stuck. As a result, the property of the gum and the chewing motions can easily cause irreparable damage.
REMOVE ALIGNERS BEFORE EATING
You will likely be tempted to keep your Invisalign aligners in when having a quick snack. However, exposing the aligners to the forceful chewing motions that occur when eating can cause damaging, and can even crack your aligners. Additionally, eating with Invisalign will usually end up as a complete mess.
CAN YOU WHITEN TEETH WITH INVISALIGN?
The ability to whiten your teeth using the Invisalign will be entirely dependent on your dentist and orthodontist, your particular needs, and the shape of your Invisalign trays. In some cases, the aligners sit just below your gum line and won’t whiten your teeth up to the ridge.
WHAT HAPPENS IF YOU DON’T WEAR INVISALIGN FOR A DAY?
It is possible to experience minor relapses in teeth alignment if you forget to wear your Invisalign aligner trays for some time. Each step in the aligner series is customized to fit your specific oral needs. As they are meant to guide teeth into specified locations, they are calibrated based on the assumption of continuous usage.
If you happen to forget to wear your Invisalign aligners, or if you decide to not wear at prescribed schedules, you may notice that your aligner will not fit correctly when re-inserting. This is because your teeth will have begun to drift back into their previous locations.
WHY IS THIS THE CASE?
Through the course of orthodontic treatments at DFY Dental, regardless of your choice of Invisalign or other types of braces, the teeth are loosened from old positions, and slowly shifted to new ones. The tissues holding the teeth in their place are more elastic than you’d think. If they are not used to teeth being in new positions, they are going to try and pull them back into their old spot.
To work at optimal levels, orthodontic treatments need to loosen teeth ever so slightly, allowing them to make this shift. Some who have removed their aligners for a timeframe as short as a few hours have stated that, once they put them back in, things feel very tight.
While not wearing aligners for an hour or two here and there won’t be enough of a catalyst to completely throw your treatment off the rails, forgetting to wear them for several hours to a day will cause issues down the line. Toss in the added pressure being put on the teeth daily from grinding, clenching and eating, the environment in your mouth is ripe for relapse and shifting.
HOW OFTEN SHOULD I BE WEARING MY INVISALIGN ALIGNERS?
Aligners need to be worn at least 22 hours per day. They should only be removed to brush and floss your teeth and to eat and drink. However, as they can be removed, some patients believe this means they can be taken out whenever the time presents itself. This is far from correct usage.
Things can always come up. Some patients might experience some situation or injury where wearing aligners can be painful. When this occurs, it’s crucial to talk with your orthodontist immediately, so a plan can be developed to take the setback into account. Hopefully, the revised plan will not set back your treatment timeline.