Have you ever been curious about the science behind clear orthodontic aligners such as Invisalign? Our Orléans dentists dissect the science behind clear aligners and explain how they work.
How do Invisalign clear aligners work?
Clear aligners are a series of custom-made, transparent, and removable trays that are used to help with orthodontic issues. They accomplish this by moving teeth in tiny increments into prescribed positions as specified in your dentist's custom treatment plan.
Over the last decade, they’ve been a popular treatment for adults and teens who want to straighten their teeth discreetly, without the wires and brackets that come with traditional metal braces.
You must be a suitable candidate for clear aligners
The first step is to determine whether you are a candidate for clear aligners. Your dentist will perform an exam during your consultation appointment, which will likely include digital x-rays, photos of your teeth, dental impressions, and a bite registration (to find out how your upper and lower teeth fit together).
This process is key to finding out whether your issue can successfully be treated with clear aligners.
Clear aligners effectively treat orthodontic issues
Your aligners will be made to treat specific orthodontic issues after your dentist examines your smile and takes impressions of your teeth. Dentists have successfully used Invisalign to treat patients with:
- Crooked teeth
- Teeth grinding
- Open bite
- Gapped teeth
- Sleep apnea
Each case is unique in the same way that each patient's teeth are unique to them. Your specific treatment time and other treatment plan factors may differ depending on which teeth must be moved and by how much. Because of their position in your mouth, some teeth may take longer to move than others.
When it comes to orthodontic treatment, removable custom clear aligners can offer an aesthetic and comfortable alternative to fixed appliances such as braces, depending on your needs and preferences.
Clear aligners encourage excellent oral hygiene and oral health
Brushing and flossing will be necessary to keep your teeth - and your aligners - clean during treatment. You will be diligently brushing away plaque and bacteria that can become stuck between your aligners and your teeth, leading to cavities, tooth decay, and gum disease.
The commitment to excellent oral hygiene - and working with your dentist to follow the treatment plan and minimize the chance for plaque to take hold - is an important part of successful treatment with clear aligners.
Patients spend less time in treatment with clear aligners
Another benefit of clear aligners is that you’ll spend less time in your dentist’s office - and more time enjoying your straighter smile.
Clear aligners should not need to be adjusted or tightened regularly, and you should only need to visit your dentist every couple of months to check in on your progress and ensure your treatment is proceeding as planned.
Limitations to Treatment with Clear Aligners
While there are many advantages to treatment with clear aligners, not all orthodontic issues can be treated with this option. Large overbites, severe rotations, some molar issues and other problems may require another orthodontic treatment option.
If your case cannot be treated with Invisalign, your dentist can help you find another option that will work for you, such as traditional metal braces.