What is Invisalign?
Invisalign is a clear brace system used by orthodontics to straighten mildly crooked or miss-aligned teeth. The revolutionary technique is becoming more and more popular as patients realise they can get top-class results in half the time of traditional orthodontics – and without making it obvious to the world that they are wearing braces. Using the latest computer technology, dental surgeons can model a perfectly fitted shield to place over the teeth, which is designed to gently push them into a more desirable position. Thanks to their transparency, the Invisalign system has been dubbed ‘invisible braces’, they perform in much the same way as previous designs, but with a discreet, effective outcome, that just can’t be matched. Call the Pearl Dental Clinic now, to see if Invisalign could help you straighten your smile.
How does Invisalign straighten my teeth?
The resin shield will do the actual pushing and re-shaping of your teeth, but you have to do your part too, by making sure you listen to your dentist and wear your braces for at least twenty hours a day – twenty-two for optimum results. This time frame allows the system to apply constant, gentle pressure that gradually moves the teeth. The aligner can be removed for eating and brushing, but you must wear it at night, otherwise all the movement that has taken place during the day will be reversed while you sleep. After about two weeks of constant wear, you should be ready to move onto your next aligner – when your current one starts to feel slightly lose around the teeth, that means it has achieved the desired results and a new one is needed to continue treatment. Regular check-ups with your dentist will allow them to keep track of your progress, so make sure you attend all your appointments and follow instructions to the letter. Normal treatment time is between six months and a year, but this can vary from patient to patient, in some cases it can take up to eighteen months to complete the course – still much less than traditional methods.
How is Invisalign better than other types of braces?
Not only are Invisalign braces much more effective than other methods, they are also considered to be more comfortable too. With traditional wire and bracket designs – ‘train tracks’ to most of us – there are often issues with discomfort, some patients complain of sore gums or irritation on other soft tissues in the mouth, and occasionally the wires can work loose and dig into the lips. With Invisalign, this kind of problem is a thing of the past, there’s no metal at all, no wires, no brackets, just a clear shield which slips effortlessly over the teeth and coaxes them into their new position.
As well as being comfortable and discreet, Invisalign are very easy to take care of, they are removed for eating and take only a few seconds to clean in the morning and evening. Metal braces have always been considered quite difficult to live with, their small components and awkward wires are hard to clean around, and because they are permanently bonded to the teeth, food debris can easily get caught between the brackets. Invisalign eliminates this issue completely, making orthodontic treatment less of a daily chore than it might have been in the past.
If comfort, performance, and subtlety aren’t enough for you, you might want to consider the fact that ‘invisible braces’ have opened up the world of orthodontic treatment to men and women of all ages. Unfair as it may seem, it’s probably not seen as socially acceptable for adults to wear braces, it’s regarded as something only teenagers have to deal with. For people who are oblivious to this stigma, there shouldn’t be a problem, but there are thousands of people who simply don’t have the confidence to wear obvious braces in public, so their crooked smiles go untreated. Invisalign allows adults who have just had to live with their miss-aligned teeth to undergo orthodontic treatment without anyone knowing. It’s such a fast, simple system that no one will notice the changes you’ve gone through, until your confidence and your new smile shine through.
How are Invisalign braces fitted?
Initially, your dentist will assess your teeth and decide whether you are a suitable candidate for the Invisalign system – unfortunately, severely miss-aligned teeth cannot be treated with an aligner; the movement it provides is limited to mild cases. Then an impression of your teeth will be taken using dental putty, and your dentist will probably take photographs to keep an accurate record of how treatment is going. After this is done, your information will be sent away to the Invisalign laboratory, where dental technicians use the latest computer technology to build a programme to your exact specifications. From this, your first aligner will be manufactured, which will carry out the first two to three week portion of the treatment.
This process normally takes a few weeks, so you will have to attend a second appointment at a later date to have the first brace fitted. The aligner should slip easily over the teeth with a firm push, and hug them tightly, but not uncomfortably. It may take a few days for you to get used to the device and your teeth may feel slightly tender or sensitive, this is quite normal and shouldn’t last more than four days at the most. If you experience a lot of discomfort, or the brace pinches you in some areas, you should head back to the dentist for some re-adjustments, however, thanks to Invisalign’s revolutionary software and manufacturing techniques, this is rarely a problem.
How much does Invisalign cost?
Because it is so effective, Invisalign is one of the more expensive orthodontic treatments. Prices usually start at around £1,500 and can be as much as £5,000, depending on which clinic you attend. To most people, this is a lot of money, but don’t let that put you off, many surgeries are happy to organise financing plans where you can pay a certain amount every time you arrive for a check-up, breaking the cost down into more affordable payments.