Invisalign and Other Clear Aligners: What You Need to Know
Posted on 9/20/2017 by Dr. J. Derek Tieken
Many adults who'd like a straighter smile don't want the tradeoffs that come with traditional metal braces. The list of things you'll worry about while wearing braces includes:
Kissing a special someone
Taking a photo for a LinkedIn profile or important occasion
Because of these kinds of inconveniences, many folks simply choose to keep their crooked smile. But now there are newer orthodontic treatments that don't require you to make those kinds of tradeoffs.
At Tieken Smiles Dentistry, our cosmetic dentistry services include orthodontic treatments like Invisalign. These treatments use a series of clear aligners instead of metal wires and brackets to straighten your teeth. Because they are practically invisible while being worn, they are especially popular among adults who may have put off straightening their teeth for years.
For more information on Invisalign and other alternatives to braces, call Tieken Smiles Dentistry at (281) 942-0444.
Are Clear Aligners For You?
The first step in your treatment with Invisalign or other clear aligners is an evaluation to determine if it is the right orthodontic treatment for you. Among the factors we will consider:
Dental issues you want to correct. While clear aligners can be used to correct mild cases of overbite, underbite, crowded teeth, or gapped teeth, they are often not the best choice if you need to move teeth vaertically or rotate canines or premolars.
Your age. We don't recommend clear aligners for patients whose teeth are still growing. Aligners work best for older teenagers and adults.
Your self-discipline. You can remove your clear aligners to eat or for other reasons. While that is certainly convenient, taking them out too often will extend your treatment. If you know you'll be tempted to remove them frequently, aligners may not be for you.
Your finances. Clear aligners can cost more than traditional metal braces, depending on treatment length and other factors. We'll help you determine the cost of Invisalign or other treatments during your evaluation.
How Does Invisalign Work?
If you decide to proceed with Invisalign or another clear aligner, Dr. Tieken will take X-rays, digital impressions, and other information that is then sent to a special lab. The lab uses that information to produce your aligners. The aligners are incrementally different. You'll change to a new set of aligners every two to four weeks. Over time, they'll gently shift your teeth into place.
You'll visit our League City, TX dentist office periodically to ensure your orthodontic treatment is going as planned. We typically schedule these checkups every four to six weeks.
Our Invisalign Experience, Other Aligner Choices
Invisalign is the best known of orthodontic treatments that use clear aligners. And we are a Preferred Provider of Invisalign. Because we want our patients to enjoy choices with their dental treatment, we also offer ClearCorrect, another brand of clear plastic aligners.
We'll take the time to review both choices with you during a complimentary consultation. That way, you can determine which orthodontics treatment is right for you.
Tips on Using Clear Aligners
Depending on the issues you are trying to correct, treatment time with clear aligners will vary. Average treatment time for adults using clear aligners is about 12 months.
Here are some tips on getting the maximum value out of Invisalign and other clear aligners.
Wear your clear aligners for the recommended amount of time. We recommend wearing aligners from Invisalign or ClearCorrect at least 20 hours a day. You should remove them only for eating or cleaning your teeth. Wearing them less than that may result in a longer treatment time.
Insert your aligners properly. You may want to use a mirror when inserting your clear aligners until you get the hang of it. Don't bite an aligner into place, as that can damage it.
Follow the recommended treatment schedule. Always wear your clear aligners for the recommended period.
Don't "jump ahead" if your aligners feel loose.
Keep your aligners clean. Take out your aligners before eating or drinking anything but water. Brush your teeth before reinsertion. Use a soft toothbrush and toothpaste to clean your aligners. If you can't brush them, rinse your mouth out and rinse the aligners in warm water before returning them to your mouth.
Watch what goes in your mouth. Don't smoke or chew gum while wearing your clear aligners.
Want to find out if Invisalign or ClearCorrect is the right orthodontic treatment for you? Call Tieken Smiles Dentistry at (281) 942-0444 or contact us to book a visit to our League City, TX dentist office.
Beautifully written and very informative
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