For so many years there has been a barrier to orthodontic treatment for lots of patients. In this article we will answer “how does Invisalign work” and how patients can now enjoy the benefits of straighter teeth without the disadvantage of wearing traditional metal braces. Invisalign is a tried and tested method to straighten teeth, and will give you a straighter smile. Let’s have a look at how.
What Are Clear Aligners?
Clear aligners like Invisalign work on the same principle as traditional orthodontics: they apply pressure to the teeth, to move them into position. The way that clear aligners do this is different though, as they are fitted over the teeth. This means that they don’t need adjusting on a regular basis but rather that you would simply wear a new set of aligners every two weeks, once your teeth have moved into the right position.
Invisalign are made out of a special kind of plastic, which is virtually transparent. They need to be removed for eating and drinking and they need to be cleaned according to the instructions, in order to preserve the integrity of the material.
What Can You Expect From Invisalign Treatment?
Invisalign is highly effective at straightening teeth and, even though, when the clear aligners were first introduced, they could only address minor issues, it is possible in some cases to use aligners for more moderate to severe correction as well.
You will have an initial consultation with your dentist, who will inspect the state of your gums and teeth. Some x rays and 3D renders will be taken, to create a representation of your mouth and teeth. Then, your dentist will use software to map out how each tooth should move, in order to end up with a straight smile. Each position is plotted with a new set of Invisalign braces. The role of the aligners, is to apply the correct amount and direction of pressure to make sure the teeth move into those spaces.
Your custom aligners will be made up for you and you will be given a few boxes, so that you can replace them without consulting your dentist. While traditional orthodontics need to be adjusted every month (because the tensions change when the teeth move), instead of having adjustments you will simply move on to the next box of aligners.
After Your Invisalign Treatment
It’s important to remember to wear your retainer once your Invisalign treatment time is over and you no longer need to wear aligners to straighten teeth.
This is an important last step that many patients neglect to follow, and the result is that the teeth can shift back if you do not wear your retainer for the prescribed period of time.
What Are The Benefits Of Invisalign Treatment?
Straighten teeth without wearing traditional braces
Invisalign offers the best of both worlds: teeth straightening that doesn’t interfere with your appearance. So many people delay or postpone orthodontic treatment because they don’t want to wear braces and experience the discomfort that may go with it but they may not think about the consequent problems that can arise.
Straightening your teeth is not just a matter of looks, having straight teeth is actually an investment in your future dental hygiene. Brushing, flossing and keeping teeth cavity-free is much more difficult when teeth are crooked. Teeth that are crowded or press into one another can cause damage and wear and tear.
You should not remove your Invisalign aligner other than to eat and drink because not wearing them for 22 hours a day can interfere with the outcomes of your treatment plan. However for many patients, the knowledge that they do have the option to remove their aligners makes their orthodontic treatment a lot less stressful.
Reasonable treatment times
Everyone will follow a different treatment plan and timeline for correction but your treatment to straighten teeth could take between 6 and 18 months to complete. In the greater scheme of your life 18 or even 24 months is not very long at all.
Looking After Your Invisalign
Keeping your aligners clean and in good condition is important so that they stay transparent. Whenever you remove them from your mouth (which should only be for eating and drinking) you will need to rinse them under water. You will be given some cleaning crystals so that you can soak them and give them a deep clean. You must also remember to brush your teeth thoroughly before putting the aligners back in your mouth.
Want to know more about how does invisalign work and whether it can straighten teeth for you? The next step is to book a consultation. Please contact us for an appointment: (03) 8737 9359.