In days gone by, three of the most dreaded words a patient could hear from their dentist were “you need braces”. This reaction was understandble, since having your teeth straightened usually meant at least two years of wearing a mouth full of metal and being subjected to regular tightening of that metal. Thankfully, dental techniques have come a long way and the process of straightening teeth can now be achieved through the use of Invisalign, a clear alignment device that you replace approximately every two weeks on your way to a better smile.
The Invisalign are trays made for your top and bottom teeth that are made of clear plastic which is nearly undetectable in appearance. The aligners work by gradually adjusting your teeth into place, which was determined by your previous orthodontic treatment plan.
If you are researching Invisalign as an option for straightening your teeth, you may want to interview several providers since you will be working with this dentist on an ongoing basis. Once that person has been selected, make an appointment for an initial consultation. At this appointment, your dentist will take several impressions of your teeth by using X-rays and pictures. He or she will then take this information to create a 3D image of your full set of teeth.
With this information, your dentist can let you know if you are a good candidate for Invisalign or if traditional braces might be a better option. If you and your dentist decide to go ahead with Invisalign, the next step is to create two sets of aligners that are customized to fit your top and bottom rows of teeth. You will wear these during the day for the duration of your treatment. They should be removed when you are eating and when you brush and floss your teeth.
The Invisalign aligners will need to be replaced every two weeks, but your dentist will supply them so you will not be required to come back in each time. Your dentist will regularly monitor the movement of your teeth with Invisalign so you should expect to make an appointment approximately every six weeks.