By now, you have probably heard of or know someone who has used Invisalign, a metal-free and wireless alternative to traditional braces. Whether you want straighter teeth for cosmetic reasons or to alleviate TMJ symptoms or other disorders, Invisalign may be the solution you need to align your teeth properly. The custom trays are practically invisible, making them perfect for people of any age. Keep reading to learn more:
How Does Invisalign Work?
Traditional braces involve brackets and wires. After being put in place, these wires are tightened at each follow-up dentist appointment. This gradually pulls the teeth into the correct position. Traditional braces can be less expensive than other options, and they may be better for fixing very extreme cases. At the same time, however, they can be extremely uncomfortable and a hassle to keep clean.
Invisalign, on the other hand, gradually straightens teeth with a series of custom-made plastic trays. The trays come in a series of aligners, the number of which will vary from patient to patient. Some may need as few as eight trays to correct their alignment issues while others may need up to forty-five.
What About the Feel and Fit?
Invisalign trays are clear and thin, making them virtually undetectable. They are smooth and much more comfortable than traditional braces, whose wires and brackets can catch on your skin or food. As a bonus, Invisalign trays require no additional tightening, which greatly lowers their level of discomfort.
The trays should be worn for between 20-22 hours per day. They should be removed while flossing and brushing, which makes keeping your teeth clean much easier than having to navigate around braces. The trays can also be removed while eating, depending on your preferences. Be careful not to leave the trays out for too long, however, because you may have some difficulty putting them back in. The tight fit is designed to help move your teeth to their new positions.
What Happens at My Consultation?
If you are considering getting braces or using Invisalign, make an appointment with your dentist. He or she will examine your teeth to make sure they are healthy, and then will discuss your options. If you choose to go with Invisalign, your dentist will take a series of measurements and make impressions of your teeth. These will be used to create your custom treatment plan, which is divided into a set number of trays.
At regular intervals, you will have a check-up with your dentist. At that point, he or she will likely recommend moving to a new tray. This may happen frequently, between every 2-4 weeks. Because each patient’s treatment plan is different, there is no “normal” or “average” time for the treatment’s completion. By the end, however, your teeth will be beautifully straight with minimal discomfort along the way. Your dentist will give you a retainer to be worn at night, which will help keep your teeth aligned in their proper positions. To learn more and to discuss your options, call Door Creek Dental today.