Invisalign is a discreet teeth straightening alternative to traditional metal braces. There are no brackets or wires that need to be tightened – and they aren’t permanently stuck to your teeth. So, how do simple clear alignment trays take misaligned teeth and turn them into a perfect smile? Let’s take a look.
How Invisalign Works
When you meet with your orthodontist, you will get a thorough evaluation of your teeth. This will likely include x-rays and impressions, as well as a 3D model of your mouth. This model will then be used to create a treatment plan that is catered to your needs.
See, Invisalign treatment consists of a series of clear aligners that are made specifically for your mouth. As you wear them, your teeth will begin to move and shift. And, as they do, you will then switch to the next aligner, and the next, and the next… moving your teeth through the process of straightening. Each aligner is worn for about two weeks – or as recommended by your orthodontist.
The new aligner is designed, in a sense, to mimic the wire tightening on metal braces. It moves your teeth into the next phase of straightening. So each time you put on a new one it will be designed a little differently and will feel tight. When your aligner begins feeling too loose, it is time to move on to the next one.
The goal is to continue wearing the different aligners throughout the process – each one building on the work of the one before it – until your teeth have shifted into their final position.
How Long Invisalign Treatment Lasts
Invisalign treatment can straighten your teeth in as little as a few months or as long as a couple of years. It all depends on the complexity of your treatment required – and how often you wear them. While the aligners can be removed to eat and drink, they are intended to be worn for at least 20 to 22 hours every day. The more you wear them, the faster they will work. Consistency is key.
As your treatment progresses, the Invisalign aligners can be worn less and less. But your orthodontist will go over that schedule with you.
Benefits of Invisalign
Many people love Invisalign as their option for straightening teeth because it is clear and discreet. And the aligner can be removed when necessary. You don’t have to worry about eating foods that will get caught in brackets or brushing every little crevice with traditional braces.
Plus, with the 3D model, you can see your goal — what your finished smile will look like. And that will encourage you to keep wearing them.