Have you ever wished you could straighten crooked teeth and close gaps in your smile without metal brackets and wires. Well, you can, with Invisalign. Invisalign uses clear plastic aligners to straighten your teeth. Not only are these aligners virtually invisible, they’re completely removable, so you don’t have diet restrictions. And you don’t have to clean around wires, just brush and floss like always. You’ll enjoy that these aligners won’t nick or irritate your cheeks, tongue, or lips.

Invisalign isn’t the best orthodontic solution for everyone, but you want to learn whether you’re a candidate for Invisalign in Harriman, please call

(845) 783-6466 today for an appointment with a Harriman cosmetic dentist at Harriman Family Dentistry.

Happy woman holding Invisalign aligner

Benefits of Invisalign

If you are looking for a comfortable, convenient orthodontic treatment, then Invisalign might just be right for you. Some of the reasons why people choose Invisalign include:

  • Aligners are clear, and nearly invisible
  • No irritation to cheeks and lips
  • Aligners are removable
  • No diet restrictions
  • Cleaning is easy
  • Fewer dental visits

Of course, the main benefit of Invisalign is in the name: it’s almost invisible. These clear plastic aligners are very hard to see, and you can wear them all day and no one will notice you have them in. The brackets, wires, and rubber bands of traditional braces are much more visible.

And when you get rid of the brackets and wires, you eliminate a major source of irritation from braces, which can rub and cut against your cheeks and lips.

Having removable aligners can make your orthodontic experience much easier. Whenever you need to smile for a close up or have a special close encounter–from the bedroom to the boardroom–your aligners can come out, as long as you make sure to keep them in for at least 20 hours a day, and 22 hours most days. You won’t have to plan your life around braces.

Removable aligners also mean that you can keep enjoying all your favorite foods. You don’t have to give up gum or pizza or bagels. Or learn a special way to eat carrots that won’t dislodge your braces.

And you don’t need to learn the complex acrobatics necessary to clean around brackets and wires. You can have your aligners out to clean your teeth, so just brush and floss normally.

There’s another way you won’t have to plan your life around braces: you can make fewer visits to the dentist. After you get in the routine with your new aligner trays, you won’t have to see the dentist for monthly tightening visits–you can get several aligner trays and not have to come to our office for six to eight weeks.

What Invisalign Can Treat

Invisalign is actually capable of treating most common orthodontic problems. Invisalign can easily treat:

  • Gapped teeth
  • Crowding
  • Overbite
  • Underbite
  • Crossbite
  • Open bite

That’s for most orthodontic cases of these types. Depending on the location of your individual teeth and the repositioning necessary, it may or may not be appropriate in your case.

How Invisalign Works

The basic principle of Invisalign is the same as for all orthodontic treatments. Our bones might seem stable and permanent, but the truth is that our body is constantly reforming and remaking them in response to environmental pressures–and our jaw is one of the areas where this happens most quickly. Orthodontic treatment works by controlling this force so that your body reshapes your jawbone around your teeth, allowing them to move.

Where Invisalign differs from traditional braces is how that force is applied. Traditional braces use wires and brackets to apply force to your teeth, but Invisalign does this with clear plastic aligners. Each aligner has a slightly different shape, allowing it to apply force to your teeth in a certain way that can move them into their desired positions.

While traditional orthodontics used manual impressions to design your treatment, Invisalign uses a digital scan of your teeth to determine the current location of your teeth. Once we know where your teeth are, we will plan where we want them to be.

Having determined the desired final location for your teeth, we send that data to the Invisalign lab. There, a computer will design the optimum tooth movements necessary to achieve the desired location of your teeth. These movements are broken down into small steps, each with an aligner to achieve them. This sequence of aligners is shipped to us, and then we’ll call you back into the office to start your treatment.

We’ll fit the first aligner on. It’ll be snug, and you’ll feel it pressing against your teeth. It may even make your teeth sore and some people experience headaches. Discomfort is relatively minor and controllable with over-the-counter medications. It will also generally only last for a day or so after you get your new aligner.

You’ll wear your aligner for two weeks, 20-22 hours a day, before switching to the next one. Some aligners will cause discomfort, others won’t, but each will help achieve the gradual movement of your teeth. Once you’ve gone through all your aligners, you’re done.

As with all orthodontic treatments, you’ll have to wear a retainer after Invisalign. That’s because the new bone around your moved teeth isn’t as sturdy and your teeth can drift back. You’ll start out wearing your retainer all day. Then you’ll switch to wearing it just at night. Eventually, you may only wear it some nights.

Disadvantages of Invisalign

Although Invisalign is a great orthodontic option, it’s not always the best option for everyone. There are some orthodontic movements that are just hard for Invisalign to achieve, such as rotating your teeth or pulling up teeth that are sunken down. Invisalign tries to overcome this by having nodes bonded to your teeth, but the result are still less certain than with braces.

Invisalign also can’t reshape your jaw, that’s a job for functional orthodontics.

Also, Invisalign tends to take as long as traditional orthodontics, which may mean a year or more wearing aligners. If you want faster orthodontic treatment, consider Six Month Smiles.

And you should be aware that Invisalign does require you to brush and floss after every time you consume anything other than water–coffee, tea, or snacks. You’ll go on a little bit of a diet just to avoid having to brush and floss so much. It’s a tradeoff.

Would you like to learn whether Invisalign is the right orthodontic approach for you? Please call (845) 783-6466 today for an appointment with a cosmetic dentist at Harriman Family Dental.