How do Invisalign clear aligners work?
Invisalign clear aligners are a series of custom-made, removable and transparent aligner trays that gently reposition teeth to resolve orthodontic issues. They accomplish this by moving teeth in small increments into prescribed positions as specified in a custom treatment plan developed by your dentist.
Over the last decade, they’ve been a popular treatment for adults and teens who want to straighten their teeth discreetly, without the wires and brackets that come with traditional metal braces.
You must be a suitable candidate for clear aligners
The first step of the process is to learn whether or not you're a suitable candidate for treatment with clear aligners. At a consultation appointment, your dentist will conduct an exam, including taking digital X-rays of your teeth, dental impression and a bite registration to learn how your upper and lower teeth fit together
This process is key to finding out whether your issue can successfully be treated with clear aligners.
Clear aligners effectively treat orthodontic issues
After your dentist examines your smile and takes impressions of your teeth, your aligners will be made to treat specific orthodontic issues. Dentists have used Invisalign to successfully treat patients with:
- Open bite
- Crooked teeth
- Teeth grinding
- Sleep apnea
- Gapped teeth
Each individual orthodontic case is different, just like each person's smile. Your specific treatment plan, duration and more will all depend on which and how many teeth must be repositioned and by how much. It may take longer to move certain teeth than others.
Depending on your needs and preferences, removable custom clear aligners can offer an aesthetic and comfortable alternative to fixed appliances such as braces when it comes to orthodontic treatment.
Clear aligners encourage excellent oral hygiene and oral health
You will need to do a lot of brushing and flossing to keep your teeth and aligners clean during your treatment. You will diligently brush away plaque and bacteria that may become stuck between your teeth and aligners, otherwise causing cavities, tooth decay, and gum disease.
A large part of successful treatment with clear aligners is the commitment to excellent oral hygiene - and working with your dentist to follow the treatment plan and minimize the chance for plaque to take hold.
Patients spend less time in treatment with clear aligners
Another benefit of clear aligners is that you’ll typically spend less time in your dentist’s office when compared to traditional braces - and more time enjoying your straighter smile.
Clear aligners shouldn’t require regular adjustments or tightening, and you should only need to visit your dentist every couple of months to check in on your progress and ensure your treatment is going to plan.
Limitations to Treatment with Clear Aligners
While there are many advantages to treatment with clear aligners, some orthodontic issues aren't suitable for treatment using this option. Large overbites, severe rotations and molar issues may require other orthodontic treatments to resolve.
If your case cannot be treated with Invisalign, your dentist can help you find another option that will work for you, such as traditional metal braces.