The Invisalign® method of orthodontics is exploding in popularity. While it is an effective way to straighten your teeth without using traditional braces, it is important to find the right provider to manage your treatment plan. Invisalign uses clear aligners instead of metal wires and brackets to straighten teeth.
Keep in mind, Invisalign does not straighten your teeth all by itself. An orthodontist needs to guide the treatment to help you end up with the smile you deserve. Invisalign is available at Precision Orthodontics & Pediatric Dentistry in Reston and the surrounding area. Call us at (703) 783-1489 to schedule an appointment to see if this treatment is right for you.
The Right Background
While orthodontists and dentists both go to dental school, that is where the similarities end. Orthodontists must undergo additional years of training on how to safely and effectively move teeth. While dentists are legally allowed to provide orthodontic care, they lack this specialized training.
This extra intensive education does make a big difference. Orthodontists are experts in diagnosing problems, recommending treatment options, overseeing a treatment plan, and working with patients to achieve results.
“While orthodontists and dentists both go to dental school, that’s where the similarities end.”
The Three Steps to Invisalign
The first step to getting Invisalign is scheduling a consultation with an orthodontist. The dentist will evaluate the patient's overall oral health and take an impression of the teeth. That impression will be sent to Invisalign to make aligners unique to the patient's mouth for a custom fit.
After making the clear aligners, we will evaluate them for fit before reviewing the treatment plan. Patients will be expected to wear the aligners for 20-22 hours a day to get results. Regular checkups will make sure treatment stays on track. New aligners are introduced approximately every two weeks. The length of treatment is different for every person.
“The first step to getting Invisalign is scheduling a consultation with an orthodontist.”
Determining if Invisalign Is Right for You
First and foremost, the orthodontist will be able to tell based on the patient's orthodontic needs whether Invisalign is right for them. If they have severe problems with your jaw or bite alignment, a more advanced procedure will be needed. Otherwise, Invisalign can treat crowded teeth, overbite, underbite, and gaps between the teeth.
Patients will want to discuss the Invisalign process with the orthodontist thoroughly. Since the aligner trays are removable, there is a higher probability of them getting lost or broken.
Additionally, it is essential to talk about overall treatment time with the orthodontist, how Invisalign impacts oral health, and how often they will need to come in for appointments. Age can also play a factor.
“First and foremost, the orthodontist will be able to tell based on the patient’s orthodontic needs whether or not Invisalign is right for them.”
Check out what others are saying about our dental services on Yelp: Orthodontist Provides Invisalign in Reston, VA
Taking Care of Invisalign Aligners
It is important to use and care for Invisalign aligners appropriately to see optimal results. The individual trays must be worn for 20-22 hours a day and are typically swapped out every one to two weeks. Patients should make sure they follow the intervals specified by the orthodontist. While forgetting to start a new tray will not derail one's entire treatment plan, it will slow it down.
Cleaning Your Aligners
Patients should rinse their aligners every time they take them out of their mouth to help wash away bacteria and plaque. They should clean the aligners with a clear and unscented antibacterial soap or with non-whitening toothpaste. Store the aligners in a case when they are not being used to keep them from being exposed to germs.
Maintaining Proper Oral Hygiene
Proper oral hygiene is essential at any time. But it is a bit easier when using Invisalign versus traditional braces. Since Invisalign aligners are removable, it is simple to brush, floss, and replace the aligners when finished. Patients should brush and floss after meals before putting the aligners back in to help keep food particles from getting stuck in the trays. Failing to do this can lead to a buildup of bacteria and plaque on the teeth, which leads to tooth decay.
“It is important to use and care for Invisalign aligners appropriately to see optimal results.”
Questions Answered on This Page
Duration of Treatment Time
The severity of the condition, how well the patient adheres to the treatment plan, and age are all factors that may influence how long it may take to complete Invisalign therapy. On average, it takes less than two years to see results. The treatment time for teens is typically a little shorter than adults. If the aligners are not worn for the recommended time, the teeth may start to shift back to their original positions.
“On average, it takes less than two years to see results.”
Frequently Asked Questions
Q. What is Invisalign?
A. Invisalign is an orthodontic technique that uses clear, plastic aligners to straighten the teeth. The aligners are created from a custom mold of the patient’s mouth. New aligner trays are provided at specific intervals as part of the treatment process. Our dentist will develop the treatment plan and monitor the process.
Q. Why should I see an orthodontist for Invisalign?
A. While orthodontists and dentists both go to dental school, orthodontists must undergo additional years of training on how to safely and effectively move teeth. They are experts in diagnosing problems, recommending treatment options, overseeing a treatment plan, and working with patients on how to achieve results.
Q. How long is the treatment time?
A. Treatment, on average, takes less than two years. But it can vary depending on the patient’s specific concerns. Aligners must be worn for 20-22 hours a day to see results. If a patient does not wear the aligners for the recommended amount of time, treatment results will take longer.
Q. How do you keep Invisalign aligners clean?
A. Aligners should be cleaned with a clear and unscented antibacterial soap or toothpaste. If toothpaste is used, make sure it is not a brand with whitening agents, which can wear away the plastic. Always brush and floss after meals before putting the aligners back in the mouth. This helps keep food particles from getting stuck, which can lead to bacteria growth and bad breath.
Q. What happens if I lose or break one of my aligners?
A. Call us right away and we can get started on getting a new set of replacement aligners to you. In the meantime, we may advise you to wear your previous set of aligners while you wait. Alternatively, we may ask you to move onto the next set of aligners. It all depends on what stage of your treatment you are in.
Get the Care Your Family Deserves
By visiting us as soon as possible, our team can help get you the professional treatment you need. Instead of waiting around and allowing the symptoms to get worse, we can provide you with treatment options.
Call Us Today
When exploring Invisalign, be sure to seek out a qualified, board-certified orthodontist for your treatment. If you are interested in learning more about Invisalign, call us at 703-783-1489 to learn whether or not you’re a candidate.
Helpful Related Links
- American Dental Association (ADA). Glossary of Dental Terms. 2021
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