What is Invisalign® ?

 

Invisalign is a system of digitally-designed clear removable aligners to straighten teeth.

 

 

How does it work?

 

A set of moulds/digital scans of your teeth are taken to create your virtual Invisalign treatment plan (Clincheck). The Clincheck shows the tooth movements required for overall teeth alignment in a virtual 3D simulation. This is previewed BEFORE starting your treatment. A series of customised clear aligners based on the Clincheck are worn to gradually move and align your teeth.

 

 

How long does Invisalign treatment take to complete?

 

 

Treatment duration ranges from six months to two years. Our average Invisalign treatment runs for about 12 – 18 months.

 

 

Propel (micro-osteoperforations in the jawbone) can be used to accelerate the speed of Invisalign treatment and thus help to reduce treatment duration by 50-60%.

 

 

What is the process like?

 

Step 1: Consultation & Assessment

 

During your initial consultation, we will first discuss your treatment goals with you. A clinical assessment is also done to ensure that you are suitable for Invisalign. Following the assessment, photos, study models/digital scans and X-rays of your teeth will be taken to design your treatment plan.

 

 

Step 2: Virtual Treatment Plan (Clincheck)

 

The photos, models, digital scans and x-rays will be sent to Invisalign to create a virtual 3-D model of your teeth as well as to plan the tooth movements required at each treatment stage. Once the Clincheck is approved by you, your unique Invisalign aligners will be printed and shipped to our practice.

 

 

Step 3: Wearing aligners

 

You are required to wear your aligners for 20 to 22 hours daily. Aligners are NOT worn during meals and NOT worn for flossing/brushing. Compliance with aligner wear is crucial for treatment success.

 

 

At your first visit, you will have customised attachments glued on to your teeth. These attachments help by improving the grip and fit of the aligners onto your teeth so that your teeth move in a predictable fashion.

 

 

You will need to change your aligners every two weeks, or as directed by us. Each set of aligners will gently and gradually shift your teeth into place, until your ideal smile is achieved.

 

 

You will be monitored during the Invisalign treatment process. Monitoring visits take place every 6-8 weeks.

 

 

Step 4: Completing treatment

 

Once you have reached the end of your Invisalign treatment, the attachments are removed from your teeth and a set of removable retainers will be made.

 

 

Retainers help prevent relapse (where the teeth shift after alignment is complete). Relapse can occur very soon after stopping treatment or occur many years later.

 

 

Invisalign vs braces

 

 Invisalign clear alignersConventional Wire Braces
AppearanceClear/InvisibleMetal or ceramic braces cemented on the teeth, with metal wire/coated aesthetic wires
Treatment TimeInvisalign takes a slightly longer duration to complete compared to conventional braces.

Some patients may need sectional braces to assist in the finishing stages of Invisalign.
Braces may take a slightly shorter duration to complete as compared to Invisalign.
Braces are useful for extraction cases or treating very complex problems.
Some patients may need sectional braces to assist in the finishing stages of Invisalign.
MaintenanceEasy maintenance.
Teeth: Brush and floss teeth normally as aligners are removable.
Aligners: Brush aligners to keep them clean.
More difficult to maintain.
Teeth: Thorough brushing and flossing is required.
Braces: Brackets and wires must be thoroughly cleaned to prevent plaque buildup.
Visits to the dentist for reviewAligner trays are changed every 2 weeks. Monitoring visits every 6-8 weeksAdjustment visits every 3-4 weeks
ComfortRelatively comfortableLess comfortable as the brackets/wires may cause abrasions and ulcers.

Ceramic brackets are more bulky and may interfere with your bite.
Personal commitmentMore commitment required. To ensure optimal results, patients must wear the aligners for 20-22 hours/dayLower commitment required. The braces are not removable.
CostHigher cost due to lab fees and digital planningLower cost/more affordable
Retainer required?Yes, you are required to wear retainersYes, you are required to wear retainers

 

 

Benefits of Invisalign

 

  • More aesthetically-pleasing, good for patients who have to look presentable in their line of work
  • Invisible
  • Removable
  • No issues with food getting caught in brackets
  • No difficulty eating
  • No discomfort from wires/brackets
  • Less speech impediments

 

 

Invisalign and the Invisalign logo, among others, are trademarks of Align Technology, Inc., and are registered in the U.S. and other countries.

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