Invisalign® Frequently Asked Questions

Invisalign® Frequently Asked Questions
Posted on 06/18/2018
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Are you or a family member considering Invisalign treatment? Though it’s a popular choice, many people wonder whether it’s right for them. Reviewing these frequently asked questions should help you better understand the treatment and decide if it’s the best option for you.

Q: What is Invisalign treatment?

Invisalign treatment is an orthodontic process that uses a series of removable, plastic trays, called aligners, to gradually straighten your smile. The treatment is a popular alternative to traditional braces because the trays are virtually invisible and don’t require metal wires or brackets.

Q: How does Invisalign work?

Invisalign works by applying gradually increasing pressure to your teeth so they shift into the correct position over time. Treatment plans vary, but in general, Invisalign aligners are worn for at least 20 hours each day for the duration of treatment. The aligners are only removed while eating, drinking, brushing and flossing.

Your plan is determined by an orthodontic professional who outlines your treatment using 3D computer imaging technology so you can see exactly what your new smile will look like after the treatment is completed. You will be given a new set of aligners every two weeks or so.

Q: Do Invisalign trays need to be cleaned?

Yes. Although they are removed when you eat or drink, theyBallasDentalCare_braces-case still need to be cleaned regularly. To clean your aligners, brush and rinse them in warm water after each meal. Avoid rinsing your aligners in hot water because that could warp the plastic.

Q: How is Invisalign different from braces?

The biggest difference between Invisalign and traditional braces is that aligners are made from clear, removable polyurethane plastic that fit snugly around your teeth, making them practically invisible when they’re being worn. Comfort is another noteworthy difference. Although Invisalign wearers will feel minor discomfort for the first few days after a new set of aligners are inserted, aligners are considerably more comfortable because they lack metal wires, brackets and elastic bands.

Q: What are some of the benefits of wearing Invisalign?

In addition to discreet appearance and increased comfort, Invisalign wearers typically have fewer dietary restrictions. For instance, many people with traditional braces can’t enjoy BallasDentalCare_teeth-carefoods like popcorn, tortilla chips, hard candy and many other foods for the duration of their treatment. Since Invisalign trays are removed during all meals, no food is off limits.

Brushing and flossing are also easier with Invisalign because the trays are removed each time you clean your teeth. It also decreases the likelihood of food getting stuck in your teeth for long periods of time, as is often the case with braces.

Q: How long does treatment last?

This varies depending on your teeth, but in general, treatment lasts anywhere from 12 to 18 months.

Q: Will Invisalign affect my speech?

Some people might experience a minor lisp while they get used to the feeling of the trays. However, this should only last for a couple of days. 

Q: Who can wear Invisalign?

Just about any adult or teenager who wants to improve theBallasDentalCare_clear-braces-invisalign appearance of their smile can take advantage of the benefits of Invisalign. Even people who already wore traditional braces whose teeth have since shifted can wear Invisalign. Schedule a consultation at Ballas Dental Care to find out whether you’re a candidate for Invisalign treatment. 

Q: Will my insurance cover treatment?

If you have orthodontic coverage, your insurance will most likely cover Invisalign treatment.

Q: Can I smoke or chew gum while wearing Invisalign?

It’s not recommended people with Invisalign smoke, as this could permanently stain the trays. Chewing gum is permitted while aligners are removed.

Q: What happens after my treatment is over?

Your doctor may recommend wearing a retainer after your Invisalign treatment to prevent the teeth from shifting back into their previous position. Most retainers are worn for about six months. Some people may have to wear their retainer indefinitely to maintain their straight smile.

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Have More Questions About Invisalign?

If you have any additional questions about Invisalign and whether the treatment is right for you, feel free to contact the staff at Ballas Dental Care. Our dentists have more than 70 years of combined experience providing expert cosmetic and general dentistry in the St. Louis area. Give us a call at 314-432-5544 or contact us online to schedule your consultation.