Smiling is a great way to increase your mood and release endorphins. Our smile is what we show the world to reflect our joy and life, but sometimes it is our smile that keeps us from smiling. While everyone’s smile is unique and beautiful in their own ways, many patients want to improve the overall look of their teeth with cosmetic procedures.
There are countless ways that someone can straighten their teeth and improve their bite. It can be challenging to select the right choice for you. If you lead an active lifestyle, are always on the go, or are a social butterfly, you may want to consider clear aligners.
Clear aligners, like Invisalign, work to straighten your teeth over a period of time. The difference between clear aligners and traditional braces is that the aligner trays are hardly noticeable on your teeth and are removable. Aligners are suitable for crooked teeth, overbites, and underbites.
What Is the Process?
Before any work is done to make your aligners, your dentist has to ensure that you are a candidate for clear aligners. This is because some bite problems are too advanced for aligners to be effective.
Once your dentist examines your teeth, they will create a record of your teeth that they will make into a 3D model. This record will include x-rays, pictures, and molds of your teeth. From these scans and models, your dentist or a lab will create a set of custom aligners.
You will wear each set of aligners for one to two weeks, depending on your dentist’s recommendation, before you graduate to the next set. Wearing the aligners as long as possible is a must. You will only take the aligners out to eat or brush your teeth. Ideally, the aligners should be on your teeth for up to 22 hours a day.
Slowly, your teeth will begin to shift with the trays. The changes in the aligners each week is minimal to ensure effective and more permanent movement. These minor alterations create a light pressure that moves your teeth over time. Depending on your teeth and original bite problem, you may wear your aligners for six months to a year.
Once you finish your last set of trays, your dentist will advise you to wear a retainer to maintain your results. Over time, you will be able to reduce how much time you wear the retainer.
Benefits of Clear Aligners
Clear aligners help to create a clear, bright smile. Clear aligners are an excellent choice if you want to avoid metals and rubber bands from traditional orthodontic braces. In addition, using clear aligners creates minimal interference in your daily life.
The ability to remove the trays to eat and brush your teeth provides a convenience not shared by metal braces. Unlike metal braces, you won’t get food caught in your aligners because they won’t be in your mouth. You have the flexibility to remove them in order to clean them properly, which is beneficial for your oral health.