In the past, achieving a straighter smile took quite a bit of work. Orthodontic treatment could mean months or even years of bulky braces that stood out, and that was pretty much your only option. Thankfully, modern technology has given braces a makeover, complete with smaller brackets, a more aesthetically pleasing appearance, and more efficient movement of the teeth. Yet even with all these exciting improvements to braces, we encounter many patients who are still on the fence about using them. Sound like you? If so, we’ve got good news—there’s another option available for giving you a healthy, confident smile you’ll love!
Brady Orthodontics is proud to offer Invisalign clear aligner therapy as an alternative to traditional braces. With Invisalign, we’re able to give patients the same beautiful results as braces, but without the use of brackets, wires, or bands. While braces have a long history of success, Invisalign has only been on the orthodontics scene for about twenty years or so. That means lots of people aren’t sure what Invisalign actually is, or what the aligners can do to correct orthodontic issues. Let’s take a closer look at exactly what you can expect from treatment with Invisalign!
What is Invisalign?
Invisalign clear aligners were developed in the late 1990’s, but similar trays had been used for many years before that as post-treatment retainers. In its early days, Invisalign was used for simple spacing issues or very mild crowding. Once orthodontists began to realize its potential, however, the aligners were redesigned to more efficiently move teeth in cases ranging from mild to moderate.
The Invisalign system is comprised of unique software and technology that allows us to move crooked and misaligned teeth in stages using nothing more than a series of customized aligners. At the end of each stage, patients replace their current aligner with the next in the series to keep up with the movement of the teeth. This will usually be every 1-2 weeks, but the exact time frame depends on each patient’s treatment plan. When patients are fully compliant, Invisalign aligners can be just as effective as traditional braces.
Does Invisalign treatment take longer than braces?
For any orthodontic treatment to work, patients must be compliant with their orthodontist’s recommendations. This is even more important than usual for Invisalign patients! Traditional braces are fixed to the actual surface of the teeth, so most of the hard work is done without too much on the patient’s part. But Invisalign aligners are removable, so the patient is responsible for wearing them 20-22 hours a day throughout the course of treatment. Patients who neglect to do so won’t see the results they desire, and may face longer treatment times in general.
We’re often asked how long a patient will need orthodontic treatment, but the truth is, there’s no “one size fits all” answer as to that. Every case is different and each patient will respond to treatment in their own way. In general, however, most people will wear Invisalign aligners for anywhere from 9–15 months, with 18–30 aligners typically used over the course of the treatment. This is actually slightly faster than the average time spent in braces!
Does Invisalign cost more than braces?
There are several factors associated with the overall cost of any treatment, but comparatively speaking, Invisalign tends to cost about the same as traditional braces.
Dr. Brady is committed to providing the best quality orthodontic care to meet every budget. We’ll work with you to create a convenient and affordable payment plan for your Invisalign treatment, and accept all major credit cards. Our team will also be happy to help you file for insurance benefits if your provider covers orthodontics. A better smile is always affordable with Brady Orthodontics!
What advantages does Invisalign have over traditional braces?
Invisalign gives patients more freedom and flexibility than traditional treatment methods do. Food restrictions are a perfect example of this. For many patients, one of the toughest parts of treatment is having to give up some of their favorite foods to keep their braces safe. They must avoid anything crunchy or chewy, which eliminates several popular foods and snacks. With Invisalign, this isn’t an issue! The aligners are simply taken out before eating, then put back in when the patient is done. Not having any food restrictions makes the treatment process a lot more fun!
Removable aligners also make it easier to maintain a good oral hygiene routine. Brushing and flossing around wires, brackets, and bands can be frustrating and time-consuming, but Invisalign aligners are removed before brushing and flossing as normal. Caring for the aligners themselves is a breeze, too! There are special kits designed to clean them, or they can be gently brushed using toothpaste and a soft toothbrush.
Without any wires or brackets to get in the way, Invisalign’s removable aligners are great for athletes and musicians who play certain instruments. And since they can be removed for short periods of time, they’re also perfect for any special event when a patient wants their natural smile to shine through, such as prom, weddings, or even senior pictures.
Will Invisalign work for everyone?
While most patients are eligible for Invisalign, it does tend to work best for teen and adult patients who already have all their permanent teeth. It’s also most effective with mild to moderate orthodontic issues, since complex or severe cases may require more precise tooth control than a removable aligner can achieve.
When you schedule a complimentary consultation with Dr. Brady, he’ll be able to determine if Invisalign is a good fit for you, or if a more traditional method of treatment would be better. In many cases, patients are able to choose between braces and Invisalign aligners!
What happens once Invisalign treatment is complete?
Whatever method of orthodontic treatment a patient chooses, the teeth always remember their previous places in the mouth. Over time, they will naturally begin to drift back towards those positions if nothing is there to stop them. That’s why retainers are an essential part of achieving long-lasting results! Our office will provide you with a retainer once your treatment is complete. Wearing this retainer exactly as directed by Dr. Brady will help keep your beautiful new smile in place for years to come.
Trust your teeth to the Invisalign experts at Brady Orthodontics
Invisalign is the most popular alternative to traditional braces, and it’s no secret why! This innovative aligner system continues to change the way people view orthodontic treatment, and we’d love to discuss it with you. To learn more about the incredible things Dr. Brady can do for your smile with Invisalign, get in touch with us today to schedule a FREE consultation!