If you’d like to straighten your smile without the look of metal braces, clear aligners could be the orthodontic solution you’ve been wishing for. Of course, for adults who want to straighten their teeth with aligners like Invisalign®, the next logical question is ‘do invisible braces work’. We’re going to have a closer look at when aligners are effective, and how they can straighten your smile.
What Are Clear Aligners?
Clear aligners could be compared to a small mouthguard, in that they are fitted over the front of the teeth. They are made from translucent plastic and while they are not completely invisible, they are the most discreet form of orthodontics available. This makes them well suited for adults who want to correct mild to moderately crooked teeth or bite issues. If you have severely crooked teeth or bite issues your dentist may recommend an alternative form of treatment.
How Do Invisible Braces Work?
Invisible braces work in much the same way as traditional orthodontics- that is, by applying gentle pressure to the teeth. The biggest difference though is in the way that they do it. Unlike traditional metal braces, which make use of a bracket and wire system, aligners apply pressure from the front of the teeth.
With traditional orthodontics, wearers need to have their braces adjusted on a regular basis because, as your teeth shift into the correct positions, the pressure system that was making them do it, changes.
With clear aligners, your dentist will map out the positions and spaces your teeth need to move into over the course of the straightening. As your teeth reach their new position, you will need to replace your aligners with a new set. This generally happens every two or so weeks. Not having to visit the dentist for regular adjustments makes a major difference to your time investment in orthodontic treatment.
What Are The Benefits Of Invisible Braces?
Invisible braces are ideal for adults who want to correct their smiles. Straightening your teeth is an essential part of your dental health because crooked teeth are more difficult to keep clean.
While metal braces have been available for many decades, a large proportion of people have avoided orthodontic treatment because they didn’t want to wear them.
Having invisible braces gives you the opportunity to redress this and avoid the social stigmas you may have wanted to avoid as a teenager
Even though you should wear your invisible braces for 22 hours a day for them to be effective in your treatment plan, being able to remove them for eating and drinking is a much more convenient treatment option for the majority of people.
Traditional metal braces have long been considered uncomfortable and even though their design has improved considerably over time, clear aligners are much more comfortable in their design, and due to the fact that they do not need tightening or adjusting.
In general, patients may experience some discomfort when they insert or start using a new set of aligners because this is what changes the pressure system. This discomfort is usually alleviated shortly thereafter.
Will Invisible Braces Work For You?
Aligners work best for mature people who will wear them for the necessary period of time. While it may be tempting to remove them, they cannot do their job properly if they aren’t in your mouth. You should only remove them for eating and drinking so they do not lose their shape and become discoloured, but you must ensure they are worn for 22 hours a day.
Aligners also need special care and cleaning. You do need to clean them and brush and floss your teeth after every meal in order to avoid debris and bacteria from getting trapped between your orthodontics and teeth. You must follow the care instructions you are given so you don’t damage the plastic they are made from or change the shape. Not adhering to the cleaning and care instructions can make your aligners more visible.
If you do not have the maturity level to manage them properly your dentist will probably recommend a different type of orthodontics for your treatment.
Ultimately, if you have mild to moderate teeth straightening issues that need to be corrected, and have the self-discipline and maturity to do your part for orthodontics treatment, your dentist may find you eligible for invisible braces.
If you still want to hear more about ‘do invisible braces work’, it’s time to make an appointment to discuss your individual needs. Please get in touch with us: (02) 8203 8760.