Invisalign has become very popular among adults and older teens as an attractive alternative to traditional braces. Many appreciate the privacy that comes with invisible orthodontic treatment; no one has to know that you are getting your dental issues fixed. There is also an aesthetic appeal; no clunky metal in your smile. However, Invisalign does not work for all cases. Let's take a look at some of the factors that your dentist will discuss with you.
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What Is Invisalign?
Invisalign is a gentler, more aesthetically pleasing approach to orthodontic treatment than traditional braces. Invisalign aligners--the dental devices that move your teeth--are clear, plastic trays that look a lot like retainers. They move your teeth slower than braces, causing less pain. They are also better looking, almost imperceptible to other people.
For a long time, people thought of Invisalign as strictly a cosmetic treatment, but the aligners have become more advanced, capable of tackling some mild to moderate cases. Below is a list of questions you can be asking yourself as you consider if Invisalign is right for your case. Ultimately, you will need to have a conversation with your dentist to determine which treatment is right for you.
1. How Developed Are Your teeth?
Invisalign only works for people who have lost all their baby teeth and who have erupted second molars. This typically happens by the later teenage years, therefore, Invisalign is best for older teens and adults.
2. How Severe Is Your Dental Issue?
Although Invisalign can do a lot to move your teeth, it cannot shift your jaw--this requires braces and headgear. For this reason, Invisalign is better for people who have mild to moderate dental issues. Invisalign can treat:
- Mild overbite
- Mild underbite
- Mild to moderate crossbite
- Mild to moderate gapped teeth
- Mild to moderate crowded/crooked teeth
3. How Responsible Will You Be With Invisalign?
Whereas traditional braces are glued to your teeth, Invisalign aligners can be removed. This requires a lot of responsibility on your part. The aligners must be worn at least 22 hours, day and night, taken out only for cleaning and for meals. Not wearing the aligners for the prescribed amount of time can set the treatment back by weeks or even months.
4. How Much Are You Willing To Pay for Invisalign?
Invisalign is typically more expensive than traditional braces. Fortunately, many insurance plans cover Invisalign, however, they sometimes do not cover the full treatment. Talk to your dentist and your insurance company about what may be covered and what may not be.
If you still feel unsure about talking to your dentist after answering the questions above, you may want to check it out the free smile assessment Invisalign offers on their website for people who are considering the treatment, but aren't quite sure if it is the right choice for them.
At the end of the day, a consultation with your dentist will clarify any remaining questions you have about Invisalign. There are several options available to you. If Invisalign is not the best choice for you right away, you may be able to use it down the road after traditional braces do the heavy lifting. Whatever we decide together, we will get your smile where you want it to be the best way that we can. Schedule a free consultation today!