Invisalign is a tooth alignment system that straightens your teeth and aligns your bite, similar to metal braces. It involves using a series of clear plastic aligners that are worn for 1-2 weeks each—then switching to the next aligner set in the series. The aligners work by gradually applying slow pressure on the teeth to change the position. Dental attachments are bonded on some of the outer tooth surfaces. These attachments allow the clear aligners to move the teeth. On average, Invisalign treatment takes around 18 months. However, each person's case is different, and times will vary depending on the complexity.
How Invisalign Treatment Works
Your first dental appointment will be a consultation with your Invisalign trained dentist or orthodontist to get a feel for the results you are looking for. Impressions are then taken of your teeth and then sent to the Invisalign lab to fabricate an extensive, detailed treatment plan and create a series of trays. During your next visit, attachments are bonded onto your teeth based on the treatment plan to help the trays create movement. You will then see your Invisalign trained dentist or orthodontist every 4-6 weeks to change your trays and check your progress.
Keeping Your Teeth Healthy With Invisalign
Since you can take the Invisalign trays out and put them back in, it is much easier to keep and clean your teeth with Invisalign than traditional dental braces. It is vital to wear your Invisalign trays as much as possible. They should only be removed to eat, drink and clean your teeth. The more compliant you are with wearing your trays, the faster the procedure and the results. It is vital to brush your teeth at least twice a day and floss at least once a day. Because the Invisalign trays block any salivary flow from your teeth when the trays are in, make sure to rinse your mouth after any food and before putting your trays back in to reduce your risk of cavities. Take care of your aligners by gently brushing them with a separate toothbrush and rinsing them in lukewarm water. Never use hot water on your aligner trays as they might warp with the heat.