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What Is Invisalign And How Does It Work?

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In the world of orthodontic care, people seeking treatment for various types of teeth misalignment often get two options. You can either get the traditional braces or the more modern clear aligners or invisible aligners known as Invisalign. Of course, if you’re like the majority of people, you’re probably wondering what Invisalign is, how it works, or what makes it different from conventional braces. Everything You Need To Know About what is Invisalign and how does it work you can read here.

Invisalign What is it?

First things first, What is Invisalign treatment? Invisalign treatment is a type of orthodontic treatment that uses clear or invisible aligners to correct teeth positioning and alignment issues. These aligners are custom-made from computer-generated images and tooth impressions are taken from the patient’s mouth by a dentist.
Are you wondering “What is Invisalign made of?” The Invisalign trays are made out of medical-grade thermoplastic. The material used in making these aligners are clear and smooth. Not only are they comfortable, but they’re also virtually invisible.
Unlike the traditional braces that are made from fixed metal wires designed to gradually pull the teeth into the desired position, Invisalign is a collection of molds or trays that help adjust the position of the teeth over time. The series of molds are worn over a month and they gradually work to address orthodontic issues like misaligned teeth and improper bite patterns. One of the main features of Invisalign is that it is virtually invisible.

What Does Invisalign Do?

Invisalign treatment is designed to straighten your teeth using aligners generated by highly accurate cutting-edge 3D computer-imaging technology. The technology uses the present position of your teeth and the final desired position to map out a treatment plan that will gradually align your teeth over a period of time.
The aligners are produced in a series which means you’ll have to visit the dental office every few weeks to replace the current one with a new set until desired results are achieved. The mold works by applying controlled force to different parts of your teeth during the treatment. This makes it a more controlled, less painful, and more convenient way to align your teeth compared to metal braces.

What Can Invisalign Fix?

Invisalign can be used for the treatment of a wide range of orthodontic issues. Whether or not this treatment option is suitable for you depends on the severity of the case. Some of the issues, Invisalign can be used to treat include:

Crooked Teeth

Crooked teeth arrangement can ruin the beauty of your teeth. Although not a particularly serious dental problem, it can still impact a patient’s quality of life. Invisalign can be used to correct crooked teeth over time
An image from Invisalign displaying a model example of overly crowded teeth.

Crowded Teeth

Where there are more teeth on your gum than normal, it can lead to twisting and overlapping of the teeth. Invisalign can be used to correct this condition reducing the risk of gum diseases.
An image from Invisalign displaying a model example of an underbite.

Overbite or Underbite

This refers to a phenomenon where the upper row of teeth closes in a position that is too far in front of the bottom row of teeth. An underbite is the opposite of this (bottom teeth are too far in front) Invisalign can be used to align the top and bottom teeth so they align properly when you close your mouth.
An image from Invisalign displaying a model of a crossbite

Crossbite

Crossbite refers to a situation where your upper and lower teeth don’t meet properly when your mouth is closed. This can lead to painful gum problems and wear down your teeth quickly. Invisalign can be used to position the teeth correctly to fix a crossbite problem.
An image from Invisalign displaying a model example of gapped teeth.

Gaps in Teeth

Invisalign can be used to treat mild spacing issues between teeth. This improves your smile and overall oral health since food can get caught in excess spaces and cause oral problems.
An image from Invisalign displaying a model example of an open bite.

Open Bite

Invisalign treatment can be used to treat an open bite, a situation where your upper and lower teeth don’t meet properly.

But does Invisalign work for these issues? Yes. Research has shown that Invisalign can be just as effective as conventional braces for the treatment of orthodontic issues. However, it works most effectively for mild to moderate problems. It might not work for everyone which is why you’ll still need to visit a dentist’s office to get recommendations.

What is Invisalign Lite ?

As the name implies, Invisalign Lite is a type of Invisalign aligner designed specifically for the treatment of minor teeth issues. This includes cases of bad positioning, slight overcrowding issues, tiny gaps, and so on. Full Invisalign works for more serious cases compared to the lite version.

Is Invisalign painful?

Not really. Although Invisalign may cause mild pain or discomfort when the device is first installed, it is not particularly painful. Also, the discomfort is temporary and should usually disappear within the first few days of using the aligners.

Does Invisalign Fix Teeth Permanently?

No orthodontic treatment (including braces and Invisalign) is really permanent. The movement of the teeth can reverse over time. Right after treatment, the new position of the teeth is not stable and may adjust again. This is why following the dentist’s instructions about maintaining good oral hygiene and using retainers is recommended.
But do you have to wear a retainer forever after Invisalign? Well, not really. Every patient has to wear retainers after any kind of teeth straightening treatment. However, this is only for some months. Invisalign treatment is often customized to each patient so it’s difficult to predict how long you’ll have to wear retainers. Generally, most patients wear retainers for about 12 to 22 hours daily for about three to six months. After this period, they only need to wear it at night for about 12 months after concluding Invisalign treatment.

What Are The Disadvantages Of Invisalign?

Although generally faster and more convenient compared to braces, Invisalign does have a few disadvantages which include the following:

  • It is less effective for complex orthodontic issues.
  • It’ll only work if you’re strictly compliant, wearing the aligners for at least 20 hours per day
  • It has to be removed each time you eat and drink
  • Soreness after removing the aligners makes it difficult to eat some foods.

What Are The Stages Of Invisalign?

Generally, Invisalign treatment is completed in three stages. These are the planning stage, the active change, and the retention stage. The specific details for each stage are highlighted below:

Planning stage

Your Invisalign treatment begins with a consultation at our dental office where a dentist London Ontario will examine your teeth and determine if Invisalign is a good treatment option for you. Once this has been done, we’ll move to the next phase of the treatment which involves designing the treatment plan.
The dentist will scan your teeth and make impressions. Data from the scan and the impression will be sent to Invisalign to produce a set of aligners custom-made for your teeth to adjust the position of your teeth to the desired point. Usually, it takes about a month for your Invisalign set to arrive.

Active Stage

Patients usually get a set of aligners. Each tray works for about two weeks before you’ll need to switch to a new one. You’ll have to visit a dentist’s office when it’s time to switch to a new tray. For effectiveness, your aligners must be worn for about 22 hours per day. You’re only to remove them when you need to eat, brush or floss your teeth.

Retention Stage

Wondering “What happens at the end of Invisalign treatment ?” After the aligner treatment, your dentist will check your teeth again to determine if the goal has been achieved. If more adjustment is needed, additional trays may be ordered. If the goal has been achieved, you’ll have to wear a retainer for a few months after your Invisalign treatment. This will help maintain your smile and keep your teeth from moving again.

Conclusion

Invisalign can be used to treat various orthodontic issues especially when the case is mild to moderate. It works faster than traditional braces and is not noticeable as well. Of course, you’ll have to visit a dentist office to talk to an orthodontist about your situation. This way you’ll know if this treatment option is the most ideal for your case. 

Visit us at Sbenati Dentistry, our dentist office in London Ontario to speak about your case and get recommendations about your treatment options. Call us (519) 474 – 0220.

Source:
www.invisalign.ca
www.cda-adc.ca/en/oral_health/procedures/orthodontics/
www.oda.ca/oral-health-basics/dental-procedures/orthodontic-procedures/

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