Invisalign is a modern orthodontic treatment that uses a system of clear tray aligners designed by a specially trained dentist to straighten teeth. These aligners are made of a special blend of plastic and manufactured in Invisalign’s own facilities to match the molds of your mouth. Because Invisalign makes the aligners unique to your mouth, they are not bulky and are nearly invisible. The Invisalign clear braces are a strong solid piece of plastic designed to exert enough pressure on specific parts of the teeth that need to be moved into a better position. These clear aligners eliminate most of the problems associated with traditional metal braces.
Contact the Downey Dentist to learn if Invisalign clear braces are right for you. During your consultation, we’ll look at your general oral health and your smile and then take impressions of your mouth. Thereafter, we send the impressions to Invisalign to make custom aligners unique to your teeth. We develop your overall treatment plan and serve as your partner in ensuring you get the desired results.
What Invisalign Braces Do
Over the years, adults have been hoping for a better way to get a beautiful healthy smile, without having to wear hideous metal braces. While many other techniques had been employed in the past without much success, Invisalign clear aligners came in and changed the game. With this, having a beautiful straight smile without metal braces is a reality for thousands of teenagers and adults.
Invisalign braces work best for individuals who never had the chance to have their teeth aligned at a tender age, or maybe had braces at some point while growing up and are now noticing an augmented pattern of their teeth crowding or shifting. Invisalign invisible braces may be the best option for you if you’d love to have a straight smile again but without the hassle of traditional metal braces.
Understanding How Invisalign Aligners Work
Invisalign works by creating a series of custom-made aligners that are replaced every 1-2 weeks. The patients switch to the next set once the aligners are removed. Each set may feel somewhat different because the aligners are meant to continue moving and shifting your teeth. The amount of movement necessary to create your desired smile typically determines the number of aligners in the series. For this reason, more aligners will be created for you if more movement is needed for your case.
To attain your ideal smile, you need to wear Invisalign trays for the most part of your day. Nonetheless, it’s easy to remove them when you want to eat, floss, or brush. And despite the fact that Invisalign clear aligners are a solid piece of plastic, they are not retainers, given that they work to dynamically work to move your teeth to match the shape of your jaw and mouth. Unlike braces, retainers simply hold your teeth in position.
Most of the patients who’ve used Invisalign braces have worn them at an average of 9-12 months, but there are also those who’ve finished in the 6-9-month range. These are great results owing to the fact that traditional braces take 18-24 months to achieve the desired smile. With this treatment, you can expect to return to our office for a progress check and minor detailing once every 6 weeks. You also get your next set of aligners during this visit. Your office visit will take less than 15 minutes and this makes Invisalign the most convenient even for the busiest people.
Given that Invisalign invisible braces have the ability to accurately move individual teeth in a computerized order, they are often able to achieve a beautiful straight smile faster than traditional braces. In most cases, it’s usually 30-40 percent less time. What’s more Invisalign braces system can also be used along with cosmetic dentistry to position your teeth in a better position for enhancement with dental crowns or porcelain veneers. This proves to be an incredible advantage since having your teeth aligned may allow for the use of more conservative or fewer veneers, resulting in increased veneer life span and decreased overall investment. Once your Invisalign braces treatment is complete, you’ll get a set of custom retainers that will allow you to maintain the perfect alignment of your teeth over time.
Braces Designed for Comfort and Convenience
The clear, comfortable, and nearly invisible Invisalign aligners are the most popular removable dental braces. They progressively and gently move teeth into their proper position without the hideous brackets and wires associated with traditional braces. These aligners are virtually invisible because they are made from medical-grade polyurethane resin.
Since Invisalign aligners can be removed, you can easily maintain a high level of oral hygiene because you can floss and brush your teeth as normal. Also, Invisalign braces have smooth edges that make them more comfortable and also provide better control in the process of teeth alignment, with a series of regulated and timed movements of the teeth. Every aligner in the treatment process is designed to move your teeth slightly, horizontally and vertically and even rotating them when necessary. They are created for a precise, comfortable fit.
Benefits of Invisalign
The benefits of wearing the clear, removable Invisalign braces to reposition misaligned teeth exceed the primary goal of achieving a beautiful smile. The improvement in appearance also comes with significant health advantages, including reducing teeth decay and the risk of gum disease. Conventional braces are usually decidedly uncomfortable, less than attractive, and can be painful to wear. Teenagers and adults can be embarrassed to wear them. A great alternative to traditional dental braces is the Invisalign system.
Here are the main reasons why choosing Invisalign over traditional metal braces would be a great option:
- Comfort: Invisalign clear braces are removable. But when one of the orthodontics specialists at The Downey Dentist attaches metal braces to your teeth, you must have them in place until they’re professionally removed. But with Invisalign clear braces, you can effortlessly remove them for a short period of time such as when you want to eat. What’s more, unlike metal braces that restrict some types of foods or drinks, there are no restrictions with Invisalign and they won’t hinder you from eating some of your favorite meals or snacks.
- Appearance: With metal braces, the mouth looks as though it’s filled with chunks of unsightly metal that make the appearance of the mouth to be unattractive. The braces are noticeable, especially when adults are wearing them and it’s also easier for food to get caught without the wearer noticing. Invisalign clear braces look better, are distinctly more attractive, and barely noticeable. They look pretty much as though the individual is not wearing braces at all.
- Safety. Unlike metal braces that have wire and protruding bits of metal with the potential of scratching and puncturing the inside of your gums and mouth, Invisalign clear braces are smooth and comfortable with no protruding wires or sharp edges. In addition, metal dental braces cause tooth demineralization and decay. In general, Invisalign aligners reduce damage caused by braces, including cavities and gum disease.
- Shorter Period of Treatment. Individuals wearing conventional metal braces may expect the treatment to up to five years. With Invisalign, you can have your teeth straightened in one year or one year and a half. You’ll also be able to spend less time at the dentist’s office since they only have to be maintained once every 6 weeks. Other types of braces may require more time and many more appointments.
- Improved cleanliness: When you’re ready to clean your teeth, you just remove the trays and then pop them back in when you’re done. And to ensure there’s no buildup in the trays, you can remove them and brush or rinse them. A clean mouth is a healthy mouth and Invisalign provides an opportunity to achieve that while straightening your teeth for the best smile possible.
Teeth Misalignments That Can Be Corrected by Invisalign
In our experience, we’ve found over 80 percent of teenagers and adults that we’ve treated are excellent candidates for Invisalign braces. Invisalign braces are versatile and can help to correct a wide range of dental and orthodontic problems. Below are typical situations where Invisalign is most often effective:
- Overbite: An overbite occurs when the upper teeth bite over the lower teeth. This can be as a result of bad oral habits, genetics, or overdevelopment of the jaw bone. An overbite can cause irritation or gum problems, painful jaw and joint problems as well as wear on the lower teeth.
- Crossbite: This happens when the lower and upper jaws are both misaligned. As such, one or several teeth on the upper jaw bite on the inside of the lower teeth. This can happen on the sides and/or the front of the mouth. If left untreated, this issue can cause bone loss, gum disease, and wear of the teeth.
- Underbite: When the lower teeth protrude past the front teeth, one is considered to have an underbite. It is typically caused by an overgrowth of the lower jaw, undergrowth of the upper jaw or both. An underbite can result in tooth wear as it prevents the normal function of molars or front teeth. And in some cases, it can cause painful joint and jaw issues.
- Widely spaced teeth: Caused by abnormal constant growth of the jaw bone and can also be brought about by other teeth shifting when there are some teeth missing. Extra spacing in teeth can lead to periodontal disease.
- Overly crowded teeth: This is a condition that occurs when your teeth cannot fit properly within your jaw due to a lack of enough room. If this condition is not treated it can prevent the normal function of teeth, increase the chances of gum disease, and cause dental decay.
Whether Invisalign is the best option for you will be determined by the nature of your teeth, your lifestyle, and the degree of work that will be required. If the sheer look of metal in your mouth has kept you from straightening your teeth, Invisalign might be just what you need. Straighter teeth make cleaning easier and ensure a healthier mouth.
FAQ About Invisalign
Can Invisalign clear braces help correct teeth misalignment if I had braces as a kid?
If you had braces as a kid but your teeth are now shifting, Invisalign can help correct that misalignment. In fact, most of the patients we see at The Downey Dentist had braces when they were kids and now notice that their teeth are overlapping or shifting simply because they lost or didn’t wear their retainer. It is typical for our teeth to shift over time and that situation is almost what Invisalign clear aligners were primarily intended for. Individuals requiring braces tend to recall how absurd they looked with metal braces as kids and don’t want to go through the same experience again in order to get straight teeth. Instead, they opt to remain with a smile that while not as bad, it acts in their self-confidence or makes it difficult for them to floss or brush their teeth. Overlapped or crowded teeth also have a tendency to easily stain or discolor. So, with Invisalign clear aligners, you get a better smile and a cleaner and healthier mouth.
Am I a candidate for Invisalign if I have crowns and a bridge?
Most adults who decide to try out Invisalign already have a dental crown or several, which is not a major issue. But when it comes to a bridge, there may be some effect on the treatment, depending on what your goals are and where the bridge is. Fortunately, Invisalign allows for the flexibility of moving some teeth while not shifting others. With the level of experience that our dentists have, we can always find a way of working around the bridge or incorporating it into the necessary movements, leading to straight teeth for the whole mouth.
Is Invisalign just meant for minor problems?
While Invisalign may have been used for simpler issues when it was first introduced, now with thousands of patients undergoing treatment, the appliances can handle any issue that would have been corrected by traditional braces. This includes more complex situations from big gaps between teeth to crowding and even crossbites. Invisalign aligners are a great alternative to conventional braces.
What is Invisalign Express?
Invisalign Express is a faster version of traditional Invisalign and uses the same concept and high-quality plastic material. But unlike traditional Invisalign that uses 22 or so straighteners, Invisalign Express uses 10 or fewer straighteners. This can speed up the teeth straightening process with treatment taking as little as 6 months. Invisalign Express is a great option for individuals with minor alignment issues. If malocclusion (bad bite), spacing, and crowding issues are more complex, traditional Invisalign may be an appropriate orthodontic treatment. This procedure requires strict adherence in order to obtain fast results. Consult with an orthodontist to see if this treatment plan could work for you.
Will my insurance cover Invisalign clear braces?
Yes, you’ll be pleased to learn that if your plan has an orthodontic benefit and you are eligible for it, you can you can file a claim and have the total cost of Invisalign braces covered. At The Downey Dentist, we have experts in this area and will work to ensure that you get the maximum benefit your plan allows for. We also have special financing and payment plans that you can benefit from. Talks to us about it and we can likely find a plan that will work for you.
What are “attachments” and why would I need them?
Your Invisalign treatment may necessitate the use of SmartForce attachments, which are small tooth-colored shapes that serve as handles. They are attached to your teeth and give the clear braces something to something to gently push on so as to make sure that your teeth are moved with the right amount of force. These attachments also make complex tooth movements possible when an individual is not wearing metal braces. Invisalign braces fit smoothly and firmly around the attachments, making them barely visible. Not everyone who uses Invisalign braces will need the attachments but if your orthodontist deems it necessary for your case, they will be attached to your teeth at the start or later on during your treatment. SmartForce attachments are usually removed when they’re no longer needed.
How does Invisalign move teeth?
Like archwires and brackets are to metal braces, Invisalign braces move teeth through a controlled and gentle pressure. Invisalign aligners move teeth through apt placement of controlled force of the teeth just like brackets and arch wires are to braces. The main dissimilarity is that Invisalign controls both the forces and the timing of the force application. Each aligner is made to only achieve the slightest of adjustments. At every phase, only certain teeth are allowed to move based on the orthodontic treatment plan for that phase. Your aligners are replaced about every two weeks in order to continue putting pressure on your teeth. This creates an efficient force delivery system that pushes teeth into a more functional and aesthetic alignment.
Finding an Invisalign Dentist Near Me
If you’d like to get a beautiful straight smile, you’re invited to schedule a consultation with The Downey Dentist today. This will ensure that you get advice from a certified dentist before you make the decision to straighten your teeth. Call 562-746-0350 to speak with an Invisalign dentist at The Downey Dentist. We’d love to work with you and get you the smile you want.