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Invisalign FAQs

 

 
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 Learn more about Invisalign teeth straightening

The world’s leading clear, teeth aligner system


What is the Invisalign system?

Invisalign is the virtually invisible way to straighten your teeth and achieve the smile you’ve always dreamed of. Using advanced 3D computer-imaging technology, Invisalign depicts your complete treatment plan based on your Invisalign dentist’s prescription, from the initial position of your teeth to the final desired position.

Then a series of clear aligners are custom-made for your teeth – and your teeth only – to move them little by little. Each aligner is worn for 1-2 weeks before being replaced by the next in the series, gradually moving towards the projected final position. Your Invisalign treatment time will be determined by your dentist, based on your specific needs.


What are the benefits of the Invisalign system?

Invisalign aligners are nearly invisible. No one may even notice that you’re wearing these virtually invisible aligners, making Invisalign a seamless fit with your lifestyle and day-to-day interactions with others.

Invisalign aligners are removable giving you the flexibility to eat and drink what you want during treatment. You can also remove the aligners to brush and floss as you normally would for fresh breath and to maintain good oral hygiene.

Unlike traditional fixed dental braces, there are no metal brackets or wires. This means that in most cases, less time is spent at the dentist for adjustments.

Invisalign allows you to view your virtual results (ask about our FREE Smile Visualisation) and treatment plan before you even begin treatment so you can see how your teeth are expected to look when your treatment is complete.


Is this a new way to straighten teeth?

Dentists and orthodontists have successfully used removable appliances for years. However, with the application of Align Technology’s 3D computer technology and aligner customisation, the Invisalign system can be used to treat a wide range of patients who want straighter teeth. The unique ClinCheck® software allows patients to see their treatment plan from beginning to end even before the start of treatment.


How long has Invisalign been going?

Align Technology Inc., the company that manufactures Invisalign, was founded in 1997.


How old is the technology behind the Invisalign system?

In 1945, Dr. H.D. Kiesling envisioned that one day modern technology would enable the use of a series of tooth positioners to produce the kinds of movements required for comprehensive orthodontic treatment. Align Technology has made this vision a reality. Using advanced computer technology, Align Technology produces Invisalign, a series of customised clear aligners. Each aligner is worn sequentially by the patient to produce gradual tooth movements in both upper and lower arches.


How many patients are being treated with Invisalign?

More than 6 million patients worldwide have been treated with Invisalign but the number of Invisalign smiles grows daily!


Where is Invisalign available?

Invisalign is sold in over 45 countries using a direct sales model in the US, Canada, Europe, China, Japan, Asia Pacific, Latin America and the Middle East, and supported by distributors in smaller emerging growth countries in Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) and Latin America.


How much does Invisalign cost?

As with other types of orthodontic treatment, the cost of Invisalign is dependent upon the complexity of your teeth straightening and your course of treatment. As a general rule, the cost is comparable to traditional fixed braces.

In simple terms, the more complex your teeth straightening, the more Invisalign aligners are needed to achieve your best smile. Conversely, the less complex the straightening, the less Invisalign aligners are needed. Consequently, based on the number of Invisalign aligners your dentist prescribes as needed, the price goes up or down accordingly.

On this basis, only an accredited Invisalign dentist or Orthodontist Provider is able to determine your cost. However, in the UK, prices for Invisalign treatment are generally between £3,000 -£4,500 (depending upon the complexity).


How does the Invisalign system work?

Invisalign aligners move teeth with an appropriate placement of controlled movement on the teeth. Unlike traditional braces, Invisalign not only controls the amount of movement per aligner, but also the timing of the movement. So at each stage, only certain teeth are allowed to move, as per the Invisalign treatment plan for that particular stage. This results in an efficient force delivery system that moves teeth into the desired prescribed position.


What are Invisalign aligners made of and what do they look like?

The virtually invisible Invisalign aligners are made of strong medical grade thermoplastic material, uniquely developed specifically for the Invisalign System. The aligners are custom-made for you and fit snugly over your teeth.


Can I go to any dental practitioner for treatment with Invisalign?

While Invisalign can be used with virtually any treatment philosophy, special training is needed. All orthodontists and dentists interested in treating patients with Invisalign must attend training to become qualified and proficient in the various requirements for treating patients before treatments will be accepted from their office. More than 82,000 dentists and orthodontists worldwide are already trained to treat patients using Invisalign.


What is the minimum age of a patient that a doctor can treat with Invisalign?

With experience, an Invisalign dentist or orthodontist can use Invisalign to treat malocclusion for a majority of adults and adolescents who want a better smile. For teenagers, talk to your Invisalign Provider to see if Invisalign Teen may be the right treatment option for your child.


How often must I see my Invisalign dentist once I have started treatment?

Invisalign appointment intervals are generally the same as with traditional braces but can be much quicker with less time spent in the dentists’ or orthodontists’ chair during appointments as no adjustments need to be made to wires/brackets. Patients typically visit their Invisalign dentist every 4 to 6 weeks to ensure the treatment is progressing as planned and to receive their next few sets of Invisalign aligners. Your Invisalign dentist or orthodontist will decide based on your treatment.


How long does Invisalign treatment take?

The total duration of treatment depends on the complexity of the treatment and is generally comparable to that of traditional braces. Typically treatment can last between 3 and 18 months. During your consultation, your Invisalign dentist or orthodontist can provide you with more detailed information.


Is the Invisalign treatment painful?

Some people may experience temporary, minor discomfort for a few days, at the beginning of each new stage of treatment when they insert a new Invisalign aligner. This is normal and is typically described as a feeling of pressure. It is a sign that the aligners are working – moving your teeth gradually, helping you to achieve the final results. This discomfort typically goes away in a couple of days.


Does the Invisalign system work on overbites?

An Invisalign dentist or orthodontist can use Invisalign to treat overbites in the vast majority of adults and adolescents. Consult your Invisalign dentist or orthodontist to determine whether Invisalign is suitable for you. Are there certain dental conditions that automatically exclude someone from being an eligible patient? Only your Invisalign dentist or orthodontist can determine if you are a good candidate for Invisalign treatment.


Are bridges a factor in Invisalign treatment?

Because bridges firmly link two or more teeth together, they offer significant resistance to tooth movement. Your Invisalign dentist or orthodontist will be able to determine whether bridges will be a factor in your treatment.


Are crowns a factor in Invisalign treatment?

Crowns (tooth caps) are usually not a factor in Invisalign treatment. However, sometimes small tooth-coloured composites called “attachments” are bonded onto teeth to help achieve certain movements and are more difficult to bond on crowns than teeth. In these cases, the location of crowns must be carefully evaluated. Our Invisalign dentist or orthodontist can provide further advice during an initial smile assessment consultation.


Can Invisalign close gaps?

Yes. Spaces between teeth are generally easy to close with Invisalign. Our Invisalign dentist can determine whether Invisalign is suitable for your teeth straightening and if this will close any gaps. Your Invisalign Smile Visualisation will enable you to see how your new smile will look after treatment.


Will TMJ affect Invisalign treatment?

TMJ refers to the temporomandibular (jaw) joint. People with a TMJ condition can have a number of problems with the jaw joint, some of which can be aggravated by appliances and treatments like Invisalign, and some which can improve, remain the same or even cause the condition to deteriorate.

To find out if your TMJ problem will adversely impact treatment, please book an appointment to consult our Invisalign dentist.