What is Invisalign?
Invisalign aligners are a treatment process designed to move misaligned or crooked teeth into proper alignment slowly. It includes a series of clear, plastic trays that are custom fit around your teeth. Invisalign is virtually invisible on your teeth, only you and your dentist should know you are undergoing Invisalign. After treatment, you can enjoy the straight, stunning smile you have always dreamed of.
Who Is a Good Candidate For Invisalign?
Most patients who wish to straighter teeth are good candidates for Invisalign treatment. This type of orthodontics can treat mild to more complex cases.
Common orthodontic issues that your dentist can address with Invisalign aligners include:
Open bites occur when some of your teeth do not touch the teeth on the opposing jaw. This type of bite can lead to TMJ discomfort and possible difficulties with speech. This makes it crucial to address an open bite with orthodontics.
If your jaw is too small or your teeth are too large, your teeth may appear overcrowded and misaligned teeth. There may be a need to remove several teeth from your jaw before using Invisalign to straighten your smile.
When one tooth bites against the inside of an opposing tooth, this is called a crossbite. Crossbites can lead to premature tooth wear, cusp fractures, and bone loss. Treating crossbites is important for the future of your smile.
This is when the bottom teeth protrude further out than the top teeth. This can be difficult to treat with Invisalign.
This is when the top teeth protrude much further forward than the lower teeth. This can be difficult to treat with Invisalign clear aligners.
In extreme cases, your dentist may recommend an alternative treatment. Your dentist could recommend a jaw expander for an overbite or underbite. However, Invisalign can be used after the bite issues are corrected.
Invisalign is an ideal option for teens, but it also works well for adults. Invisalign is also useful for adults who previously underwent orthodontics, but teeth have since shifted. This can be quite successful versus wearing braces.
The best way to know if you are a candidate for Invisalign is to schedule an appointment with your dentist. Your dentist will complete a thorough smile examination. This will include x-rays and specialized imaging software to determine if Invisalign is the right choice for your smile.
If your dentist determines that you are a good candidate for Invisalign, the first step will be fabricating custom trays for your smile. When the clear aligner trays are ready, you will pick them up from your dentist, and they will give you clear instructions on use and care.
A nice feature of Invisalign is that you only have to wear the trays for 20 – 22 hours a day to get optimal results. You can take the trays out to brush and floss your teeth. You also can remove the new aligner before eating. This means you will not have any food limitations like with orthodontic braces. Just do not forget to put your aligners back in after you finish eating.
It is important to note your aligners can stain. It is OK to drink water, but please remove your aligners when drinking anything that can stain them (like red wine and soda).
Each time you get a new aligner from your dentist it will slowly move your teeth into the desired position. You will change to a new set of aligners approximately every two weeks throughout your treatment. About every six weeks, you will have a checkup with your dentist so that they can check your progression.
Every Invisalign treatment plan is quite different. Most adult patients need to use Invisalign for approximately 12-16 months. Teens may need to wear their aligners for a little longer.
If you previously had undergone orthodontic treatment and need to re-straighten your smile, you may only need to wear Invisalign for six months or less. It is essential to wear your aligners for the recommended amount of time for optimal results. Treatment options will vary from patient to patient.
It is important to keep your aligners clean during treatment. Invisalign has its own specialized cleaning system, but you can also clean your aligners by brushing and rinsing them.
Benefits of Invisalign Over Traditional Braces
Invisalign has become a preferred treatment over traditional orthodontic braces because it is virtually invisible. This is especially important for teenagers who are self-conscious of their smiles. Invisalign can also be safely worn during any activity without the worry of injury to the tongue or cheeks, as with metal orthodontic braces.
For adults, wearing Invisalign allows you to maintain a professional image rather than dealing with metal braces.
Invisalign is also far more comfortable than wearing traditional braces. Most patients experience some discomfort and soreness during treatment. With Invisalign, there are no metal brackets or metal wires to irritate or injure your gum tissues. Your custom Invisalign aligners will be smooth against the soft tissues of your mouth.
Invisalign will also allow you to maintain better dental hygiene and oral health. Since you can remove your aligners before brushing, you can keep your teeth clean. Brushing around traditional braces can be extremely difficult. Plaque, food debris, and bacteria can build up around the braces, increasing your risk of tooth decay and periodontal disease.
With Invisalign, patients can continue eating all of their favorite crunchy and hard foods, including apples, nuts, and pretzels, when wearing Invisalign. These foods are typically off-limits with braces since they may damage the metal brackets or metal wires.
Are There Any Challenges Associated With Invisalign Aligners?
Wearing Invisalign is a comfortable and convenient process, but getting used to your aligners can take some time.
Some patients find that their speech sounds a bit off when they first get Invisalign aligners. They may have trouble with certain pronunciations like “the” and “s.” Over time, you will get used to speaking with Invisalign trays. Patients often find that saying difficult words in private can help them master speech with aligners in place.
How Much Do Invisalign Cost?
The cost of Invisalign is an individual thing and will depend on the complexity of the issues involved.
How long will it take to straighten teeth?
Is Supplemental treatment needed?
Most Invisalign treatment costs approximately $3,000 – $8,000. Your dental insurance company may cover a portion of Invisalign treatment. It is important to check with your dental insurance carrier to see what benefits you may have as well as speak to your invisalign provider.
If your dental insurance benefits do not cover the total cost of Invisalign, there are other ways to pay. Most dentists offer care credit financing or monthly payment plans to make it more affordable to begin Invisalign treatment.
Pros and Cons of Invisalign Treatment?
Pros Of Invisalign
- Invisalign works to straighten crooked, misaligned teeth and correct malocclusion (crowding), open bites, underbites, and crossbites.
- Invisalign aligners are much less visible than metal wire and metal bracket orthodontic braces. The entire aligner treatment also typically takes less time.
- Some dentists offer a digital enhancement to show you what the final result will look like.
- You will be able to eat anything you want. This freedom is not true for traditional braces.
- You can keep brushing and flossing as usual, which helps maintain good oral hygiene and oral health better than metal braces. It will be unlikely to leave white decalcification spots on your new smile or an increase in tooth decay like with conventional braces.
- Like any orthodontics, Invisalign is not a quick solution to smile issues. Treatment time averages about 12-16 months.
- It takes an overall commitment to wear the aligners 20-22 hours per day.
- The clear aligners can stain. Important to keep them clean and remove them when drinking anything that may cause staining.
- The treatment can be uncomfortable for some patients. Especially true during the initial days of wearing a new clear aligner. Each tray is a custom fit for your smile. Initially it will be snug and hard to get in and out when you place it in initially. Over time, the aligner will fit more effortlessly as your teeth begin to move.
- Many patients will need to wear some “attachments.” These attachments are tiny, teeth-colored dots bonded to your teeth and click into your aligners to help your dentist make more complex adjustments to your smile. “Buttons” that serve as anchors for rubber bands may also be needed. Attachments and buttons may not be as noticeable as metal braces, but they will still be visible.
- Invisalign clear aligners can have sharp edges that may irritate the inside of your cheeks, lips, and tongue.
Regain confidence in your smile with the help of
Our goal is to help our patients give them their best smile yet. Dr. Perrone and her cosmetic dental team are proud to offer comprehensive dental care, including routine dental cleanings as well as the restorative and cosmetic procedures mentioned above.
A Smile Can Change Everything!
If you are ready for a smile makeover, contact Marielaina Perrone DDS at (702) 458-2929 to schedule a no cost cosmetic consultation appointment. We cannot wait to help you with your state of the art smile makeover to create the smile of your dreams in Summerlin, Las Vegas, and Henderson, NV.