If you are new to Invisalign, you might have more than a few questions about how it works and whether or not it is the right option for you. Here are some answers to some of the most common Invisalign FAQs
What is Invisalign?
Invisalign is a system of invisible aligners, made out of a special type of plastic. These look similar to plastic retainers or even the trays used in teeth whitening systems. Each set of trays is made specifically for you, to move your teeth in the way prescribed by your orthodontist.
How do the aligners work?
Invisalign works in the exact same way as metal braces do. It uses gentle pressure to push the teeth into a more aesthetic and functional alignment. Each aligner is designed to make only the slightest of adjustments. You trade out your aligners, usually about every two weeks, to continue putting pressure on your teeth.
Why choose Invisalign over metal braces?
The biggest benefit of choosing Invisalign over metal braces is that Invisalign aligners are nearly invisible. Once you adjust to wearing them, no one will even notice that you have them on. In comparison to metal braces, which are very noticeable and which can irritate your mouth, these smooth plastic aligners make it easy to keep your mouth clean and straighten your teeth, without anyone being the wiser. The only thing people will notice is that your teeth are straighter.
How long does Invisalign take?
One of the common misconceptions about Invisalign is that it takes much longer than braces to get your teeth straight. The average adult needs about twelve months for a treatment. Teen patients sometimes have longer, sometimes shorter treatments. Talking to Drs. Gemmi and Middleberg can give you a good idea of how long your treatment might take.
How often do I have to wear my aligners?
Because your aligners can be removed, you might be tempted to take them out of your mouth throughout the day. And while you should take them out to eat and to clean your teeth and the aligners, you should try to wear them for at least twenty hours a day. It is recommended that you remove them only for eating, flossing, and brushing.
What are attachments?
You might have heard of “attachments” as part of the typical Invisalign treatment, but you might not know what they are or if you will need one. Sometimes called “ridges,” attachments are used to help the aligners move the teeth into the right position. They are small piece of composite affixed to the teeth.
How do I care for my aligners?
Just like your teeth, your aligners need to be regularly cleaned. Invisalign provides a cleaning system that is specifically designed for their aligners, but you can also use a clean toothbrush and lukewarm water to brush away bacteria and food particles that might be stuck to your aligners.
What does Invisalign cost?
A major sticking point for many patients is the cost of Invisalign, as many people believe that these aligners cost more than braces. As with most medical treatments, it is best to consult an expert before dismissing a treatment option entirely. Invisalign is often a much better treatment for patients and insurance is now more likely than ever before to cover the cost of it, especially if you have a flexible spending option. Most offices, like ours, offer financing options to help you pay off whatever your insurance does not cover.
Will my insurance over Invisalign?
Many insurance plans these days do cover Invisalign, especially if they cover metal braces. Because benefits differ slightly from plan to plan and from provider to provider, you should review you plan to make sure that you are actually covered before you make any decisions.
Does Invisalign hurt?
One of the biggest reasons many patients choose Invisalign over metal braces is that there is far less discomfort with Invisalign than there is with metal braces. While there will still be a small amount of discomfort and soreness, simply because the aligners do put pressure on the teeth, there will be far less irritation than with other methods of straightening your teeth.
How do I know if Invisalign is right for me?
There are very few patients for whom Invisalign is not a good option. In some circumstances, braces are still the best choice to correct a misalignment, but Invisalign has advanced to the point that it is now capable of handling a wide variety of issues with ease. The best way to know if Invisalign is right for your case is to talk to Drs. Gemmi and Middleberg. They will be able to examine your specific situation and tell you whether or not you are a good candidate for Invisalign.
Is Invisalign easy to use?
Invisalign’s ease of use is one of the biggest reasons to choose this option. The only step you really have to add to your routine is cleaning your aligners. As long as you get into the habit of doing this, you will make it through treatment perfectly fine. Keeping your mouth clean and dealing with your treatment is much easier when you choose Invisalign than when you choose other methods of straightening your teeth.
Are there ways to speed up the Invisalign process?
The best way to make sure your treatment goes as quickly as possible is to wear your aligners for at least twenty hours a day (preferably upwards of twenty-two hours a day). There are some solutions, like AcceleDent, which help speed up the treatment as it encourages your teeth to move faster.