May 22nd, 2016
When it comes to straightening your smile, our team at Allen Whole Health Dentistry knows that having a mouth full of metal braces may not be your idea of fun. Luckily for you, Dr. Namrita Singh can offer a cosmetic alternative: Invisalign!
Using a series of clear, comfortable, and completely customized aligners, you can get the smile you’ve always wanted without traditional braces.
Since Invisalign aligners are discreet, they’re hardly noticeable when you speak and smile, and because they’re removable, you can eat and drink whatever you want. Just remember to brush and floss before putting your aligners back in! Treatment with Invisalign is just as effective as with metal braces, and the results are just as amazing!
Not having metal wires poking your cheeks or brackets that fall off at the most inopportune time resulting in an emergency trip to your orthodontist, is just one advantage of using Invisalign.
The one burning question every orthodontic patient has is 'When are these braces coming off?' I can tell you from personal experience as my daughter asks me that exact question before every visit to the orthodontist. She hates her braces because she is restricted in what she can eat, it takes her forever to brush and floss her teeth around all her brackets and wires, the wires poke into her cheek, her teeth are sore after the wires are adjusted, and her most important reason, she is conscious about her looks and smile. In fact I don't have a single smiling picture of hers since she got her braces. I don't blame her for wanting them off, but I can't tell her when they will be off, and neither can her orthodontist. You may ask, Why is she not getting Invisalign? That question will be answered a little further down in this blog. The point I would like to make at this time is that unlike traditional braces, where the end result remains a mystery until the brackets and wires are gone, and one is always wondering (like my daughter) which visit to the Orthodontist will be the last visit, Invisalign uses a technology that shares the end result with you by using a series of virtual 3D images. Not only can you see the virtual model of your teeth as they look before treatment, you can see individual tooth movements at two week intervals until the final result is derived with the last set of aligners giving you the exact date of treatment completion.
As I mentioned earlier , Invisalign uses a series of clear aligners to move your teeth until the desired results are achieved. Treatment with Invisalign begins with taking patient records. In layman terms, these records are a collection of pictures, radiographs and molds taken of the face and teeth as they are in their current condition. These records are then sent to Invisalign Laboratories. A virtual model of the patient's teeth is made with specialized computer software which can design aligners that can move teeth in stages. Each aligner moves specific teeth to a certain positions in a two week duration. The next aligner is then designed to fit over the previously moved teeth and move them and other teeth further for the next two weeks. All the aligners are designed in a similar fashion until all teeth are finally moved to their desired position. The virtual model with all its stages is available online so that the patient can see the end result. Only after the dentist and patient look over the entire treatment sequence, are satisfied with the end result, and know the exact duration of treatment, does the dentist approve the case and the aligners are manufactured and mailed to the dentist to be delivered to the patient.
The aligners are numbered and delivered in sequence and depending on how comfortable the patient begins to feel about changing them out every two weeks, they can be given for the next four to six weeks, especially if the patient prefers to have lesser visits to the dentist.
The visits are short and easy and require minimum intervention from the dentist as the next set of aligners is tried on and delivered to the patient.
Having given you all the major advantages of Invisalign, let us look at some of its limitations. whether one can call this a limitation or not, I leave up to you, but it is important to note that unlike traditional braces which can not be removed and require little patient compliance other than keeping good oral hygiene, wearing elastics etc, patient compliance is of utmost importance for invisalign to be successful. The aligners can only do their job if they are proactively put on and kept on the teeth for at least 18-20 hours a day. They should only be removed for eating and drinking. Before investing in getting Invisalign, a patient needs to understand that it requires self motivation and discipline to keep your aligners on all the time and not misplace them or forget to put them on.
The second limitation of invisalign answers the question about why my daughter wasn't a candidate for it. Invisalign is only recommended for adults and children over the age of 12. Many children need orthodontic intervention at an earlier age for better and faster results, and my daughter was one of them.
The last caveat, and perhaps the most important one. Invisalign is not the miracle cure for every patient wanting straight and beautiful teeth. One can be assured, that if your ultimate goal is to have a beautiful, healthy smile, cosmetic dentistry has advanced enough to give anyone the smile they have always dreamed about.
For more information about Invisalign, cosmetic dentistry, TMJ disorders can be helped with Invisalign, contact our office to schedule a free consultation with Dr. Singh.