If you’re wondering how clear aligners for teeth like Invisalign work and whether they’re right for you, stick around. Thanks to Invisalign treatment and many other clear aligner brands, people can correct teeth with little disruption to their life.
Clear aligners have many benefits for patients over traditional fixed braces. For example, you can continue to eat the same foods, brush and floss as usual, and smile as widely as ever while clear aligners get to work straightening teeth. Having a straight smile isn’t just about sporting a confident smile; it can improve your oral health and help prevent tooth decay.
But before diving into how clear aligners for teeth work, it’s important to talk about the difference between clear aligners and traditional metal braces.
How do clear aligners differ from metal braces?
The main difference between clear aligners and metal braces is that the former are removable, whereas the latter is fixed. Another noticeable difference is that clear aligners are virtually invisible, whereas metal braces are usually noticeable. Traditional braces use metal brackets and wires that can cause sores and irritation, whereas aligners are made of clear plastic and remain comfortable for an extended period.
Both types of orthodontic treatment are suitable for correcting mild to moderate dental issues. However, those with more complex problems are unlikely to be suited to Invisalign treatment per se and will need to wear a fixed metal or ceramic brace.
So, how do clear aligners for teeth work?
The first step is to consult with an orthodontist or dentist to see if you’re a suitable candidate for treatment based on your needs. Remember, there are many providers of clear aligners, so you’re not limited to Invisalign treatment if you’re looking for a different option. The most crucial factor to consider is the skill and expertise of the dentist rather than the brand of the aligner.
What happens if you’re approved for aligner treatment? How do clear aligners work?
No matter the type of clear aligners you decide on, the dentist will take photos of your face and teeth and carry out a 3D scan and x-rays of your mouth. These records are used to create a 3D model of the teeth so the dentist can design a personalised treatment plan and order the relevant number of aligners or trays, as they’re also known.
Upon receipt of the trays, you will need to wear them in sequential order for around two weeks at a time. The trays will feel tight when you first start wearing them but will loosen as the teeth gradually shift into new positions. The light pressure applied from the trays is how clear aligners for teeth work over time. Each tray moves the teeth around 0.25 mm.
There may be attachments
Whether you’re undergoing Invisalign treatment or have opted for ClearCorrect or SureSmile from our clinic, you may need small tooth-coloured attachments on your teeth. These make it easier for the aligners to grip and remain in place. They also apply pressure to certain parts of the teeth, helping the aligners move the teeth up, down, around or side to side.
Patients need to wear their aligners for a minimum of 22 hours a day to achieve the best results, removing them to eat and drink anything other than water. Once the final aligner has been worn, patients will be issued a retainer to prevent teeth from moving back into their original positions.
Are clear aligners right for you?
Whether you’re considering ClearCorrect, SureSmile or Invisalign treatment, It’s good to know that they are all low on maintenance, high on results, and fast on effectiveness. At My Local Dentists, we provide clear aligners and braces treatment and would be happy to discuss your best options based on your dental needs, lifestyle, and budget. Why not schedule a complimentary orthodontic appointment.
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