Your smile is important. It’s the first thing that makes an impression on other people. It gives you confidence.
What if your smile isn’t as straight as you want it to be? While braces have been a tried-and-true orthodontic treatment to straighten teeth, they may not seem like the best option for your lifestyle.
Luckily there is another option—Invisalign or clear aligners.
Even if you are about to start your teeth straightening journey, have you done your research?
Are you prepared for what the process entails? Do you realize what you’ll deal with daily? If not, don’t worry our orthodontists are here to help give you the scoop!
The Length of the Invisalign Journey
The majority of Invisalign treatments last for at least a year – however, this can vary due to what your orthodontist recommends. There will be certain milestones that will require you to get new alignments along the way to help your teeth progress into a healthy, straight smile!
First, you will meet with your orthodontist to get an initial exam as well as our 3D impression-free scan. After that, you will receive your first custom-made Invisalign aligner in about four to six weeks.
From there, you will switch to the next aligner on the schedule that your orthodontist recommends. This is to help ensure your progress continues quickly and smoothly.
Around two or three months later, you go in for a checkup. This is to see if Invisalign is working as it should and your teeth are progressing correctly.
Finally, depending on your progress, in six to twelve months you are due for another checkup. This appointment is to make the final adjustments that will finish your Invisalign journey!
For more information, read our infographic about Getting Started With Invisalign!
5 Things to Know Before Getting Invisalign
It’s well known that Invisalign is a dependable method for teeth straightening. Here are some tips for Invisalign treatment that people have shared:
1. Invisalign Requires More Responsibility Than Braces
Even though it’s easier to use than braces, the process is complicated. It doesn’t matter if you’re an adult or a child.
Because the Invisalign aligners are removable, you have to pay more attention to them than braces, which are permanently adhered to your teeth. You will have multiple aligners to keep track of and it can become expensive if you lose or damage any.
You also have to be diligent about cleaning your aligners, especially after meals, where you will need to wash your teeth AND the aligners. This will prevent bacteria from growing in them, which could cause complications along the way.
In addition, you will have to wear your aligners for at least 22 hours each day. Don’t give in to the temptation of taking them off whenever you feel like it, or leaving them off for extended periods of time – ultimately, you may affect the progress you are making which could result in a longer treatment time.
2. Slight Changes in Your Speech
Similar to braces, there will be a slight learning curve to speaking with aligners in your mouth. Each new aligner may present new challenges, such as a slight lisp. Luckily, your speech won’t be affected very much or for very long, and some patients report having no issues whatsoever!
Eventually, you will get used to it and speak as you normally would.
If you are continually having a problem, or if your speech is heavily affected, this could mean that there’s an issue with the aligner you are using. You should make an appointment with your orthodontist to have it looked at as soon as you can.
3. There May Be Some Discomfort
Because your teeth are going through changes and the aligners are putting pressure on your teeth, you may experience some discomfort. This may happen each time you change aligners, though results may vary from patient to patient.
Even though you may still be uncomfortable at times, Invisalign is much more pleasant than if you had braces. There isn’t any metal being put in your mouth that can irritate your gums or tongue.
4. Don’t Forget About Hygiene!
It’s important to pay attention to your oral hygiene a lot more than usual during your Invisalign process. Luckily, you can remove your aligners and brush and floss with ease, which is very different than cleaning your teeth with braces. Cleaning prevents gum disease, tooth decay, and other oral issues that could impede your progress to straight teeth.
5. Wash Your Hands Often
Because your aligners are removable, you will have your hands in your mouth more than usual. This is because it is recommended to remove your Invisalign aligners every time you eat or engage in sports.
It’s important to wash your hands before and after putting your fingers in your mouth. Washing prevents the spreading of germs that could get you or others sick!
Now You Are Prepared for Anything with Invisalign!
These tips were curated from patients who have undergone and LOVED their Invisalign treatment – we hope some of these will be helpful for you as you start your journey with your orthodontist! While it does take some adjustments to your lifestyle and habits, you’ll have a beautiful, healthy smile to show off your hard work and dedication.
Get in Touch with your Orthodontist to Get Started
We look forward to providing you with top-notch orthodontic treatment that gives you the confidence in your smile that you deserve. Contact us today to get started!