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What is Invisalign?

18th January 2018 By Sophie Knight

Invisalign is a treatment offered by dentists for straightening your teeth. Invisalign differs from traditional braces since it is virtually invisible, rather than being metal fixed onto your teeth.

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How does it work?

When you go to get Invisaligns, they are custom made to fit the current shape of your teeth. They are designed to sit tightly on your teeth, but not so much that they are uncomfortable – snug enough that they do not slip off. You can read more here about Invisalign. 

Every aligner shifts your teeth ever so slightly, moving them both vertically and horizontally and even rotating them if necessary. The aligners are engineered to use the correct amount of force in the right places at the right time.

Typically, your set of aligners will be changed every week or two by your orthodontist. Each time you change them, your teeth will naturally move more into the desired position. This is all part of the custom treatment plan which is mapped out by your doctor. The video below shows how the teeth become straightened during the treatment.

Treatment Process

Here is what to expect from your first consultation to your newly straightened teeth.

How Much Does Invisalign Cost?

Interestingly, the cost of Invisalign treatment is very comparable to the cost of traditional braces. While the cost will vary depending on the level of treatment you would require, in general the treatment will cost anywhere between £2,500 – £4,500. However, if you require on a very minor tooth movement the price could start at about £1,700.

Your First Consultation

Choosing to go with an Invisalign treatment is an important dental commitment and a big financial decision, especially since it starts at around £2,500. Therefore it is essential to find the best doctor/orthodontist for you. To do this, you may wish to book consultations with a variety of Invisalign-trained dentists to see who you feel most comfortable with.

At your first consultation, your dentist will discuss your needs and evaluate whether the Invisalign treatment is right for you.

The Custom Treatment Plan

Your doctor or dentist will use a 3D scanner such as the iTero digital scanning technology to quickly create 3D images of your teeth. In some places, physical impressions will also be taken using a setting gel which hardens on your teeth.

Using the information extracted, your doctor or dentist will map out a precise and individual treatment plan. This plan will include the exact movements of your teeth and how long you will undergo the treatment for. Using digital technology, you will even get to see how your teeth will look when the treatment has been concluded.

Your Clear Invisalign Aligners

The custom-made aligners are made out of proprietary SmartTrack material. Living up to the name “Invisalign”, they are virtually invisible so most people will not be aware that you are wearing them during the period of teeth straightening – they would have to get pretty close to even notice! Goodbye the days of looking like an awkward teenager.

For the best results, you should be wearing your custom-made, clear aligners for around 20 to 22 hours a day, everyday until the treatment is completed according to the mapped out plan.  Doing so will create the best results, however you must take them out to eat, brush and floss.

Your Individual Process

By wearing your sets of aligners, your teeth will begin to gently and gradually move and shift into place, pain free.

Your doctor or dentist may recommend that you start to wear a new set of aligners each week and may schedule in a check up every six weeks or so.

Since the Invisalign is not fixed onto your teeth, you will be able to see the process as it happens.

Taking Care of Your New Smile

After you have finished your treatment, you should start to wear a Vivera retainer. These are custom made using the same digital technology as Invisalign clear aligners. You need to wear these so that your teeth do not move back to how they were before your treatment.

How Long Does the Invisalign Treatment Take?

As mentioned, Invisalign is a process which is very much dependant on you and the severity of your case. Therefore, the length of your treatment will be determined by the expertise of your dentist or doctor. Nevertheless, the average case for adults will last for about 12 months.

Before and After Pictures 

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