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Invisalign® is a form of clear braces used to align and correct crooked teeth. It’s different from conventional braces in that it does not have metal wires running across your teeth, but instead, you use a series of clear aligners. These aligners are like mouthguards except they are very thin and completely see through. It is very difficult to see the aligners in people who are using the Invisalign® method.
The obvious advantage of Invisalign® is that you don’t see them, therefore being able to carry on day-to-day without people noticing them. But that’s not the only advantage. Because they can be taken in and out of your mouth, it is a lot easier to brush your teeth and floss, therefore being able to maintain good overall oral health. This also does not restrict the food you can eat which can occur with regular braces.
Teeth straightened with Invisalign® generally take less time than conventional braces. Most cases can be completed in 12-18 months.
Another advantage is that Invisalign® aligners do not cause demineralization that normal braces can cause. Because normal braces are cemented onto your teeth, you cannot clean under them and over time these areas can lose minerals and become weak. This does not occur with Invisalign®.
Can Invisalign® Be Used for All Cases?
Although the majority of crooked or crowded teeth can be fixed using Invisalign®, not all cases are suitable for this treatment. There are certain limitations and these can be determined at your initial consultation appointment. You will then be told if you are a suitable candidate for Invisalign®.
What are the Steps for Invisalign® Treatment?
You will first sit down with your dentist for a consultation where you will be given information on the Invisalign® process. Your teeth will then be assessed to see if your case can be treated by the Invisalign® procedure. If deemed a suitable candidate, then records of your teeth will be taken such as X-rays, pictures and impressions of your teeth. These are then sent to the Invisalign® laboratories where your clear aligners are made. Your case will then arrive at your dental office in about 3-4 weeks. Your first aligner will be given to you at this time and tried in by your dentist. Home care instructions and maintenance instructions will also be given. You will then be scheduled in every 3 weeks to have your next aligner delivered and tried in. Once treatment is completed, then a retainer will be given to you in order to keep your teeth in place.