The Hidden Advantages of Invisalign®
There is a lot more to having a “perfect” healthy-looking smile than most people realize. Straight teeth help to improve overall health and wellness.
There is a lot more to having a “perfect” healthy-looking smile than most people realize. Yes, straight teeth look better and help us to feel more confident, but they can also positively impact our overall health and wellness.
Over time, poorly aligned teeth can lead to a number of dental health concerns, from gum disease and bone destruction to chewing and digestive difficulties. Bad bites can also contribute to speech impairment, and a painful jaw, as well as chipped, worn down and lost teeth.
In the past two decades, a new technology has emerged to give people who have moderate malocclusion or misalignment of teeth and/or jaw a more convenient and discreet way to correct the problem.
Created by Align Technology, Invisalign® is now one of a few companies providing clear plastic removable aligners as a solution for crooked teeth, crowding and overbites.
Invisalign® consists of aligner trays made with comfortable, BPA-free clear plastic. They fit close to your teeth to gently shift them into the correct position with a treatment plan devised by your dentist. The correct specifications of your aligners are calculated by using precise 3D digital images of your teeth or from physical impressions.
Some of the most common problems that can be corrected by Invisalign® are cross-bites, side spacing, overcrowding, and overbites or underbites. In most cases, Invisalign® can address the concerns, but may not be recommended when back teeth need correction or if your teeth need to be vertically moved or rotated. Invisalign is also helping those who once wore braces but did not wear their retainer afterwards.
Despite many improvements to traditional “train track” braces over the years, including less obvious tooth-coloured ceramic and “fashion” colours, the whole process is still not very comfortable. Metal brackets are glued to your teeth and tied together by wires and tiny rubber bands. You’ll need to set aside time to visit your orthodontist for several fittings. Most people experience some pain and tenderness at fittings and as the teeth begin to move. A restriction on food choices and the chore of cleaning traditional braces also tends to make them less appealing.
Benefits of Clear Braces
• Invisalign® clear “braces” don’t show – they are virtually invisible and are not noticeable like traditional braces
• You’ll need fewer and shorter check-ups with your dentist
• Unlike traditional braces, you can remove them to eat and brush your teeth, so there are fewer restrictions on the types of food you can eat
• Length of time wearing clear aligners can be shorter depending on the corrections required
• Teens and adults alike appreciate the free feeling of Invisalign® clear braces
• You can easily remove Invisalign® clear braces for certain occasions such as speaking engagements or special events
• Invisalign® saves you time when getting ready - you just remove them to brush your teeth and put them in again
Some Important Things to Consider
• Some people develop a temporary lisp or other speech problems in the first weeks as they adjust to wearing aligners.
• Some patients feel pain as their teeth get used to aligners
• Fittings can be uncomfortable for some people
• Some people may have difficulty putting on or taking off the aligners, but your dentist will show you the best way
• Aligners must be removed when you eat or drink anything other than water.
• You must brush your teeth before putting clear aligners back on your teeth
• You must wear aligners as much as possible to get the results you want in the scheduled amount of treatment time
How does Invisalign® Treatment Work?
Virtually invisible, clear aligners are constructed of multilayer SmartTrack® material and are custom designed to fit securely over your teeth.
The invisible aligners work by gently shifting your teeth using a pre-determined amount of pressure on certain points, both horizontally and vertically. If your teeth need to be turned, then invisible attachments will be glued to your teeth.
Schedules for new aligners vary from patient to patient but generally you may need a new set of aligners every week. Check ups to monitor your progress would be less frequent at every 6 to 8 weeks.
You can expect to wait about six weeks for a new set of aligners to be made.
As with traditional braces you may need a custom-made retainer to maintain your newly positioned teeth at the end of the treatment.
It’s up to you
In the end, the length of time your correction takes with Invisalign® will be up to you. If you wear your clear aligners as directed, usually 22 hours a day for best results, and keep them clean, remove them to eat and to brush and floss, then you can expect great results.
Informing yourself of all the benefits and other considerations will ensure that you make the best decision for you and your teeth.
It is extremely important to work with a dentist who is experienced and trained in the Invisalign® method.
If you are interested in learning more about Invisalign®, we would be happy to meet you to determine if Invisalign treatment is right for you. Please contact Dentistry in Waterloo for a consultation.