Ronald L. Cooper DDS, FAGD

Perfect teeth are something that many people aspire to have. Unfortunately, most people don’t feel truly confident with their smiles and don’t seek treatment for their crooked teeth or gapped smiles due to a fear of the limitations and maintenance of traditional braces.  Luckily, an alternative called Invisalign has gained popularity due to its lack of brackets and its almost invisible look. 

What Is Invisalign Treatment? 

Invisalign is different from traditional metal braces. It is an orthodontic treatment that uses custom-made, clear plastic aligners that shift your teeth into the desired position. 

This process is very gradual, and you will likely go through different plastic aligners every two weeks as your teeth shift. The Invisalign clear aligners are designed using flexible plastic. These thin, clear aligners are designed to look almost invisible. 

How Does Invisalign Work? 

If we decide that Invisalign is right for you, you can get started immediately. We first make impressions of your teeth for custom-made aligners.  When the aligners arrive, we place small tooth colored attachments to some of the teeth. This is where the Invisalign aligner will attach.

The aligners will apply force to the right places at the right time, based on the plan we create.  Regular checkups will help keep your alignment correction on track and ensure that your aligners continue to fit as they should. Invisalign aligners are trimmed based on your gum line, helping to make them more comfortable for you.

Depending on your particular needs, you might opt for Invisalign treatment on just your top or bottom teeth. We can help you make the best decision to get the smile you want. 

Benefits Of Invisalign

What sets Invisalign apart from traditional braces is the fact that you can take the aligners off for a couple of hours each day. When you eat and clean your teeth, you remove the aligners, which helps to keep them clean and clear for as long as possible. However, if you are a heavy coffee drinker or smoker, the Invisalign aligners will begin to yellow over time, making the plastic less conspicuous. Therefore, you should continue to practice good dental hygiene and care. 

How Long Does Treatment Take? 

Every smile is different, so there is no exact date of treatment. Most people finish their treatment within 20 weeks, but it depends on how complicated your case is and how diligent you are about using the aligners. While treatment might take more than 18 months, you will start to see results much sooner, often within weeks. 

Who Is Invisalign Meant For? 

Most of the time, Invisalign works just as well as traditional braces. However, since the aligners can be removed for meals and cleaning, you must be compliant and wear your aligners optimally for 22 hours per day.  If you do not have the discipline to keep your aligners in your mouth, traditional braces might be a better choice.

Invisalign treatment can be a good solution for both teens and adults who want a transparent way to improve their smile. It can fix common issues like teeth crowding and bite problems without interrupting your busy life. 

How Much Does Invisalign Cost? 

Depending on how complex your case is and how many aligners you need will dictate how much Invisalign will cost for you. Often, your Invisalign treatment plan will cost roughly the same as traditional braces would. Check out current Invisalign promotion.

What If I’ve Had Braces Before? 

If you have had braces before, but your teeth have begun to shift since getting them removed, Invisalign can help straighten your smile again. However, if you have bridges or implants, Invisalign might not work with you. We can evaluate your individual case.

How Does Invisalign Affect My Everyday Life

Because of the clear plastic of Invisalign, most people likely won’t be able to tell you are wearing the aligners unless they look closely. You can remove the aligners when you are drinking, eating, brushing, and flossing. So if you have a special occasion, like a wedding, job interview, or when playing sports or an instrument, you can pop the aligners out. However, it is recommended that you wear them between 20-22 hours a day to get the best results. 

Unlike with braces, where you can’t eat food like popcorn, caramel, or even apples, you won’t have the same restrictions with Invisalign. In fact, you are encouraged to remove the aligners during meals, to reduce staining, and to make it more comfortable for you. However, chewing gum is discouraged because it will stick to the aligners. Smoking is also not recommended because it can stain the clear plastic. 

The Invisalign aligners should not affect your speech, but it might take a few days for your tongue to get used to having the device in your mouth. You might find that you have a slight lisp for the first couple of days, but that should go away quickly. 

Is Invisalign Painful?  

Because the aligners are gently pushing on your teeth, you might feel mild pressure, especially the first few days of wearing a new set of aligners. However, this minor discomfort is completely normal and is a sign that the aligners are working to straighten your teeth. 

How Do I Clean My Aligners? 

The recommended way to clean your aligners is to brush them with a soft toothbrush and toothpaste and rinse them with water. Never use hot water because it might permanently wrap and damage the aligners. 

After each meal, you should also brush your teeth before replacing the aligners in your mouth as food residue might stain the aligners. 

What Happens When I’m Finished With Treatment? 

When you finish any type of orthodontic treatment, we recommend that you use a retainer to prevent teeth from shifting back. However, each case is different, so speak with us to learn more. Are you ready for a beautiful smile?  Learn about Invisalign today.