Over the years, the design, shape, size, and even color of traditional braces have changed dramatically. They’re smaller, better looking, and can correct many different orthodontic issues. This means you get a beautiful smile to love for the rest of your life. Despite these exciting developments, you may not be sold on using traditional braces to improve your oral health. That’s why we’re here to tell you the truth about Invisalign.
At Sawgrass Orthodontics, we’re proud to offer Invisalign clear aligners as an alternative to braces. With this innovative system, you get the same beautiful results as braces without any brackets, wires, or bands. There are a lot of stories about what these aligners are, how effective they are, and much it costs. We’re here to clear up some misconceptions and tell the truth about Invisalign.
What is Invisalign?
Align Technology developed Invisalign clear aligners in the late 1990s, but similar trays had been used as retainers after treatment for quite a while. The inventors of Invisalign took this connect and expanded to straighten your teeth, not just hold it in place.
In its early days, Invisalign was mostly used for simple spacing issues or very mild crowding. As it became more popular and orthodontists began to realize its potential, the aligners improved to move teeth more efficiently. Currently, over 7 million patients have been treated with Invisalign aligners! When used as directed by an orthodontist, Invisalign can be just as effective as traditional braces and offers much freedom and flexibility.
The software and technology that makes Invisalign possible allow us to move crooked and misaligned teeth in stages. At the end of each stage, patients will replace their current aligner with the next in the series. This usually happens every 1-2 weeks, depending on their customized treatment plan.
Does aligner treatment take longer than braces?
Any orthodontic treatment requires a commitment from you, the patient, to successfully produce the results you’re looking for. This kind of compliance is especially important with aligners. Since braces are a fixed appliance, meaning they’re attached to the surface of your teeth, a lot of the work is done for you.
Since aligners are a removable appliance, you have to do your part to keep your teeth moving correctly. For the system to work properly, aligners need to be worn 20-22 hours a day, throughout treatment. That means some extra variables come into play when determining how long treatment will take. That means there isn’t an easy answer to how long anyone will be in treatment until it has gotten underway.
Every case is different, and each patient will respond to treatment in their own way. In general, the average number of aligners used with aligner treatment is between 10 and 48, with the total treatment time averaging from 6 to 18 months. This is actually slightly faster than the average time spent in braces!
Is aligner treatment more expensive than braces?
Aligners were pricey when they first came out, simply because they were a new technology. If you’re still concerned about the price, rest assured that they are now comparable in price to traditional braces.
At Sawgrass Orthodontics, we aim to provide affordable, high-quality orthodontic care for every budget. We offer no-interest financing in-office, credit cards, and most major insurance plans as well as Health Savings Accounts (HSA). We’ll even verify your orthodontic benefits and process your insurance forms for you!
What advantages do aligners have over braces?
The advantage that probably got you thinking about Invisalign is the flexibility as compared to traditional treatment methods just can’t beat. Food restrictions are a great example of this. Most patients in braces will tell you that this is the hardest part of treatment to get used, even though giving up certain foods is necessary for the safety of your appliances. Avoiding anything crunchy or chewy, meaning many of your favorite foods, is hard! Thanks to the removable aligners, this is no problem for Invisalign patients! You simply take them out whenever you want to eat, then put them back in when you’re done. No food restrictions make orthodontic treatment a lot more fun!
It’s easier to take care of your teeth and maintain good oral hygiene with removable aligners than with traditional braces. Brushing and flossing around wires, brackets, and bands can be frustrating and time-consuming. With aligner treatment, aligners are removed before brushing and flossing, and caring for the aligners themselves couldn’t be simpler. There are special kits designed to clean them, or you can gently brush them using toothpaste and a soft toothbrush.
Aligners are also great for anyone who plays sports or an instrument. No brackets and wires to get in the way of your technique or to worry about damaging. Since they can be removed for short periods, they’re also perfect for those special events where you only want your natural smile shining through, like a wedding, prom, or senior pictures.
Will Aligners work for everyone?
For the most part, aligners work best for adults and teens with mild to moderate orthodontic issues. If your case is complex or severe, you might not be a candidate for Invisalign. You may require more precise tooth control than removable aligners can achieve. At your free consultation, Dr. Kristen or Dr. Penny, they’ll determine if aligner treatment is the best option for you. Our practice will only recommend the treatment we believe is best for your unique smile!
What happens once aligner treatment is complete?
Your teeth will remember their former position no matter what orthodontic treatment you choose. Your teeth will start to drift towards those positions over time if there’s nothing to spot them. That’s why retainers are so important! Once your treatment is complete, our office will provide you with a retainer. To maintain your newly straightened smile, you should always wear it exactly as directed by Dr. Kristen and Dr. Penny.
Trust your smile to the Invisalign experts at Sawgrass Orthodontics
By now, you can probably see why aligner treatment is the most popular alternative to traditional braces. This exciting aligner system continues to change the way people view orthodontic treatment, and we’re proud to offer it to our patients in Sunrise and the surrounding communities.
If you’d like to learn more about Invisalign and the incredible things it can do for your smile, get in touch with us today to schedule a complimentary consultation with Dr. Kristen and Dr. Penny! With aligners and our expert team, you can achieve the beautiful, healthy smile you deserve.Back to Blog