If you’ve always wanted braces but didn’t want to commit to a mouth full of metal, an alternative called Invisalign® can provide the solution you’re seeking. The Invisalign system is a series of custom-molded, clear aligner trays that can straighten your teeth, often in as little as 6-12 months.
Invisalign has a lot of advantages. But it’s not right for everyone; some people still need traditional metal braces. Dr. Thomas D. Sokoly of Sokoly Dental explains how to determine whether or not Invisalign is the right option for you.
What is Invisalign?
Invisalign is a system of custom-molded, clear thermoplastic aligner trays. You need to switch out the trays every couple of weeks to accommodate your gradually shifting teeth. Because they’re clear, most people can’t tell you’re wearing them unless they get close to you.
In a study by the cosmetic procedure site RealSelf, 88% of people who have gotten Invisalign say it was “worth it.” The advantages of Invisalign over traditional metal braces include:
- More cosmetically appealing to wear
- You don’t have to get brackets or wires adjusted
- You can eat or drink whatever you want
- You’re less likely to have white decalcification spots or an increase in cavities, as you might with traditional braces
- You can see digital pictures of your projected outcome, which can improve your motivation to stick with it
Invisalign has a lot of advantages and can give you the smile of your dreams with a lot less hassle than you might expect.
What Invisalign can fix
Invisalign can fix a lot of dental problems – even ones you might think would require more extensive orthodontic work.
Among the dental problems that Invisalign can fix include:
- Overbite issues
- Open bite
- A gap between your teeth
- Crowded teeth
Some overbite issues may be more complex and require treatment with traditional braces, but many are resolved with Invisalign. Consult with Dr. Sokoly to learn about the results you can expect.
Things you need to know
Invisalign can correct a lot of dental issues, but a lot of your success is determined by how much effort you put into wearing the trays.
For proper results, you need to wear the Invisalign trays for 20 to 22 hours a day. You can remove them to eat or drink, but you need to put them back in. This is called “compliance” with the Invisalign system, and the higher your compliance, the more likely you are to see results.
You also need to clean your trays every time you take them out of your mouth to eat or drink. This is because you don’t want to have the bacteria and food particles from food or beverages become trapped under the trays, which could lead to cavities.
You should also be prepared that you will likely have to wear a retainer after you finish your course of treatment with Invisalign to maintain your new smile. If you don’t wear a retainer, your teeth may not stay in their new positions.
Invisalign can work for people of any age, even children and teens. There’s also some evidence that your teeth may be more open to shifting between the ages of 35 to 50, which can make treatment in this age group more effective.
If you want to know if you’re a good candidate for Invisalign, the best way to find out is to schedule a consultation. Call Dr. Thomas D. Sokoly of Sokoly Dental at 202-235-2072, or schedule an appointment online.