For patients dealing with crooked and misaligned teeth, traditional metal braces are no longer your only option for straightening your smile. Invisalign® is an alternative that offers some distinct advantages.
Here at Nunn Family Dentistry, Dr. Clay Nunn and our team of compassionate dental professionals are dedicated to helping you keep your smile as healthy as possible. Misaligned teeth aren’t just a cosmetic issue. Crooked teeth cause excess wear and tear on your teeth, gums, and jaw, increasing the risk of gum disease, cracked teeth, and jaw problems.
Metal braces are a conventional method of straightening the teeth, but they’re highly visible, even from afar, and this can impact your confidence in social situations. Fortunately, Invisalign provides a discrete alternative.
Invisalign is a series of aligners you wear for 20-22 hours daily, except when eating, brushing, and flossing. The aligners are clear and hardly noticeable, even up close. You wear the same aligners, top and bottom, for 1-2 weeks before switching to the next set. The comfortable aligners gradually move your teeth to a new position.
The fact that Invisalign braces are clear is a major advantage, as most people won’t notice you’re wearing them. What’s more, you remove them briefly when eating, which means you don’t have to avoid certain foods like you would with traditional metal braces. Invisalign also makes it easier to maintain good oral health.
If you’re considering Invisalign, it’s wise to learn about this treatment alternative so that you can make an informed decision. Here our experts separate fact from fiction as we discuss some of the most common myths about Invisalign.
Traditional braces are highly effective. They’re made of metal and are strong and robust. This leads many to believe that metal braces straighten teeth faster than Invisalign tray systems.
While every case is unique, the total treatment time for Invisalign is similar to traditional braces. In fact, Invisalign may take less time than metal braces in some cases.
As with conventional braces, the treatment time varies widely depending on factors such as compliance, age, and severity of orthodontic issues. Because adolescent patient’s jaws are still growing, they tend to require less treatment time.
The average time it takes to straighten teeth with traditional metal braces is two years, while Invisalign requires less than two years on average. Some cases may require as few as six months, while more severe cases may require up to three years. These time frames are similar with metal braces.
Metal braces have a reputation for causing discomfort, especially shortly after having an adjustment. The metal wires affixed to the braces are tightened to gradually move your teeth. Discomfort may develop within a few hours of having your braces adjusted and may last a week.
Soreness of the teeth and gums is common during this time. Most have trouble eating certain foods and opt for softer foods like mashed potatoes, yogurt, and soup.
Many people assume that Invisalign causes similar discomfort.
Invisalign trays are made out of a type of a flexible plastic called polyurethane resin, and they’re surprisingly comfortable to wear. Since there are no wires or brackets, the aligners fit smoothly over your teeth and are much more comfortable than braces. It’s common to feel some pressure for the first few days after changing to new aligners, but after that the pressure subsides.
When you get conventional braces, the orthodontist places a small amount of glue in the center of each tooth and attaches brackets. Metal bands are placed around the molars to anchor the braces.
Once the brackets and bands are in place, the orthodontist attaches archwires. Every 4-6 weeks the braces are adjusted. This provides great control over the movement of your teeth. However, this doesn’t mean that metal braces offer more precise control than Invisalign trays.
While metal braces have more force to move teeth, Invisalign trays provide more all-around coverage of force across the whole tooth. This makes them just as effective as traditional metal braces, and in some cases, Invisalign is more effective and offers more precise control than metal braces.
Whether it’s for teeth straightening or a regular six-month cleaning, many patients have questions and concerns about safety during the COVID-19 pandemic. Fortunately, experts say it’s safe to visit the dentist. To learn more, check out this article.
Straightening your teeth with the discreet Invisalign system can help you feel self-confident while you improve your smile. To find out if you’re a good candidate for Invisalign, call us at Nunn Family Dentistry to schedule an appointment, or make your request online today.