Invisalign is a type of orthodontic treatment that provides help in straightening of the teeth without using the very common and traditional metal braces. Invisalign clear aligners have today, become a major revolution in the field of orthodontics. This is because it affords patients a new and more comfortable option to wearing metal braces that do not really have the best of looks. In using Invisalign clear aligners, instead of metal braces, a series of customized clear aligners are worn and they provide assistance in moving your teeth to the correct position that it should be in. In recent times more especially, a lot of patients that have been skeptical about the use of braces are now opening up to using Invisalign. There are a lot of things to know if you’re looking to use Invisalign any time soon, including how it works, the costs and a whole lot more. Let’s consider all these.
How Invisalign Works
As stated earlier, Invisalign employs clear, near-invisible braces in the process of straightening your teeth. These aligners are manufactured from thermoplastic materials that have been developed in a unique way that is based on your treatment plan. Your dentist then offers you a series of bespoke, customized aligners in order to gently move your teeth in the right direction as determined by your doctor. Every single aligner works on its own in making subtle adjustments to the position of the teeth. In essence, these aligners when they are placed on teeth move teeth gradually from the position that they currently are occupying to the determined position. A new set of aligners which continues the same process are to be used after two weeks.
One benefit of Invisalign include the fact that they are removable so, you can easily take them off when you want to enjoy your favorite beverage or meal and it also makes for easy cleaning. Invisalign also does not cause pain when worn, unlike braces. Invisalign are however to be worn for long periods of time, up to 20-22 hours in a day for effective treatment.
Cases That Are Treatable Using Invisalign
Invisalign can prove helpful in a lot of teeth straightening cases whether complex or mild. Let’s consider some of these cases.
- Overbite – This occurs as a result of protrusion of the upper teeth over the lower teeth. It can be caused by a number of factors including genetics and underdeveloped bone around the teeth.
- Gap Teeth – When there is a continuous abnormal growth of the jaw bone, gapped teeth can occur. Missing tooth too can be a cause. It may lead to lower protection of the teeth due to the space and also an increase in the risk of having periodontal disease.
- Open Bite – This is a case of some parts of the teeth not being able to make physical contact with the other opposing part to attain a proper bite. Excessive thumb sucking or a genetic disorder can be the root cause of this situation. It can result in painful chewing and even in some cases, speech impediment.
- Underbite – Occurs when the lower teeth are protruded that it shoots above the upper teeth. Root causes may include, the loss of an upper tooth or undergrowth of the upper jaw and overgrowth of the lower jaw.
- Crossbite – When both the upper and lower teeth are not properly aligned, it can result in crossbite. In this situation, one or more of the upper teeth will bite on the insides of the lower teeth. It can result in bone loss causing diseases of the teeth and gums.
- Overly Crowded Teeth – A lack of space in the jaw to accommodate all teeth can lead to overcrowding and the teeth will not fit in normally. This can result in crooked teeth if not duly taken care of. It can cause plaque to easily accumulate and tooth decay can also occur easily.
The Treatment Process
When going for Invisalign treatment, it is very important that you find the right doctor that will work best for you. It will not be out of place to even meet up with a few capable doctors that have been trained in the use of Invisalign and then finally settling for the one that you feel most comfortable with.
At the initial consultation, your doctor will determine if Invisalign treatment is good for you after discussing your needs with you. A scanner such as iTero Intraoral Scanner a product of Align Technology is then used by your doctor to produce fast, clear 3 Dimensional images of your teeth. This will enable your doctor to create an accurate treatment plan which is inclusive of your exact teeth movements and the duration of your treatment. You will get the chance of seeing a preview of your expected teeth movements and smile.
The next step is the production of your bespoke customized aligners, from SmartTrack materials. They are practically invisible so no one will even notice you are wearing them. As you begin to use these aligners, your teeth will begin to shift into place gradually. You will be recommended to wear a new set at two weeks intervals and also come for regular checkups intermittently by your doctor. At all the different stages it will be possible for you to have a view of progress that has made on your teeth so far. At the end of your treatment with Invisalign, you can also request for a retainer.
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Cost of Invisalign
A number of factors come into play when it comes to the cost of treatment using Invisalign. Some of these factors include the length of time required for treatment and also, the number of aligners that is you will need during the course of the treatment. The cost of traditional braces is at a wide variance but ranges between $2500 – $6000. But it is important to also note that individual needs make the cost vary as well. A dental insurance plan might prove useful in offsetting some of these costs as most of them cover Invisalign just as they do braces. It however is advisable to check with your dental insurance company first of all so you can know the extent to which your plan covers you.
Ultimately though, the treatment choice you make will be in your hands and that of your dentist. But you can discuss payment options with your dentist if the cost is of a great concern to you. There will often be a flexible monthly payment plan that can help ease payment for Invisalign patients as it is spread out over a longer period of time.