Invisalign is a fairly recent development in orthodontics. Developed by an American company in the late 1990’s, Invisalign has changed the smiles of over 1.5 million patients in 50 countries worldwide.
As with traditional orthodontics, the aim of Invisalign is to correct orthodontic problems by aligning the teeth and jaw.
With the Invisalign system, gone are the metal braces attached to the teeth. The system works with clear trays that are removable. As the patient progresses through the program, the trays (called ‘aligners’) get tighter fitting, moving teeth into the required position to create a beautiful straight smile!
When might Invisalign be recommended by my Dentist?
Invisalign may be an option if:
- Teeth are overcrowded
- There are gaps between teeth
- There is an over bite, under bite, open or cross bite
Benefits of Invisalign
- Many adults avoid traditional orthodontics for aesthetic reasons. As an adult it can be embarrassing to have to wear metal braces – wearing Invisalign avoids this problem. The aligners are clear and barely noticeable when in the mouth.
- If the patient has an occasion like a wedding or work function, the Invisalign aligners can be removed easily for the event – this is much more difficult to achieve with metal braces.
- Invisalign aligners can be removed to eat and drink, and to brush and floss your teeth – reducing the traditional problem of having to be careful with what foods you consume, having food stuck in braces and the difficulty of cleaning teeth with braces on. Being able to brush and floss the teeth without the hindrance of braces, may also reduce the chance of tooth decay and gum disease.
- Invisalign aligners are made of plastic, so the irritation and pain sometimes caused by metal braces will not occur.
- Invisalign may involve a shorter time period than traditional braces, but this will depend on the individual patient.
What is the Invisalign process?
Step One: Invisalign Consultation with Dentist
Meet with a Pacific Smiles Dental Dentist to discuss what you would like to achieve with your smile. The Dentist will be able to advise if you are a suitable candidate for Invisalign. If you are, impressions of your teeth will be taken and sent off to Invisalign for processing.
Step Two: Invisalign Treatment plan
The impressions on your teeth will be turned into a computerised 3D representation by Invisalign. Based on your Dentist’s treatment plan, the Invisalign team will show how your teeth will change during the program and what final results you can expect.
Step Three: Invisalign Aligners
Once your treatment plan has been agreed upon, the aligners are made by Invisalign. Aligners are generally worn for 2 weeks before you progress to the next stage. The number of aligners needed depends on the patient.
Step Four: Treatment process begins.
Invisalign aligners should be worn for around 20-22 hours per day – only removed to eat, drink or clean your teeth. Progress checks with your Dentist are usually required every 4-6 weeks. Depending on your smile, the program may take between 9 and 18 months to complete.
Cost of Invisalign
The cost of Invisalign can vary depending on the amount of work that is required, but is almost comparable to what you might pay for traditional orthodontic appliances. Once you have a consultation with a Pacific Smiles Dental Dentist they will be able to provide you with a cost for the treatment. If you have dental health insurance with orthodontic cover, Invisalign is generally covered. Speak with your health insurer for clarification.
Pacific Smiles Dental and Invisalign
A number of Pacific Smiles Dental Centres offer Invisalign treatment. Please contact your local centre for more information.