Metallic braces are really cool on teenagers and rappers. However, most of my regular patients do not want to be seen on braces. Even some of my patients that could get health benefits from correcting mal-aligned teeth do not consider orthodontic treatments seriously. That is right, braces are not just for beautiful smile, crooked teeth makes oral hygiene more difficult and the improper bite can lead to TMJ disorders, mouth breathing and a lot of unnecessary decay and gum diseases. Extra confident smile that the straight teeth give you is just a bonus.

 So you don’t want to be seen with braces but also need the benefits of straight teeth. Now you can eat your cake and have it too. Read-on, Invisalign could be an option for you. With Invisalign you wear a clear, almost invisible “aligner”, to move your crooked teeth into right position.

Before we get too excited about Invisalign, let’s make it clear – Invisalign may not work for all. Your general dentist would be able to recommend if Invisalign is the right treatment in your case. At our practice, we refer 10s of patients to accomplished orthodontists because based on our experience we know when Invisalign is not right for the patient.The whole process begins with a consultation with your dentist. On the first visit upper and lower impressions are taken along with some photographs. All this information along with required radiographs are then sent to the Invisalign  company.

Invisalign then uses this information to manufacture clear aligners that are computer generated. This information is communicated to the dentist through a clin check treatment plan which will give a simulation of the expected outcome.

Small composite squares called attachments need to be placed on the recommended teeth which then help to hold the trays in place and provide the desired tooth movement. Space needs to be created for the teeth to move. The trays need to be switched out every week and worn at least 22 hours a day. The only time they can be removed is during eating and drinking any alcoholic beverages.

The length of treatment varies with each individual. Simple cases can be completed within a few months whereas more complex treatment plans need a few years to get the desired results. The success of any dental treatment to a very large extent depends on patient compliance. Wearing the trays diligently and changing them at the right time will produce great results.

Teeth always have a tendency to move even after successful completion of orthodontic treatment. So retention is the key to keeping the teeth in their ideal position. Patients should diligently wear their retainers initially for at least 20 hours a day and over a period of time the number of hours can be tapered down. Patients who feel that they are not very compliant when it comes to wearing retainers can opt for permanent ones which are bonded to the teeth and cannot be removed.

Invisalign is such a great option that people can get their teeth aligned while maintaining their esthetics as well as function as the trays don’t affect speech or phonetics. It automatically enables the patient to maintain their oral hygiene and helps them take care of themselves and prevent any tmd disorders or headaches associated with malalignment.

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