Crooked or misaligned teeth have a major impact on both your smile and the health of your mouth. They can cause uneven wear, significant jaw pain, and can greatly increase your risk of developing gum disease and tooth decay. Traditionally, metal braces have been used to correct crooked teeth, and are highly effective. However, their visibility often makes them undesirable. At Newport Dental Group, we provide Invisalign® as an alternative to traditional metal braces.
Traditionally, crooked teeth have been corrected with metal braces. Metal braces consist of brackets, which are affixed to each tooth at the beginning of treatment, bands, which are placed around each of your back teeth, and archwires, which are anchored by the bands and attached to each bracket with an elastic O-ring. The archwires are responsible for the movement of your teeth, as well as holding them in place while they stabilize. While metal braces are highly effective, they are also often the source of significant self-consciousness, particularly for older teens and adults.
Invisalign® provides an alternative to traditional metal braces. They consist of hard, clear plastic aligners, which are created from impressions of your mouth. These aligners are completely invisible when they are placed on your teeth. They are also removable. However, to achieve the best possible results in the shortest amount of time, they need to be worn between 20 and 22 hours each day, and should only be removed to eat and to brush your teeth.
Invisalign® treatment involves the use of several sets of aligners, each new set slightly different than the one before it. Each set of aligners is meant to be worn for two weeks at a time. The hard plastic puts pressure on your teeth, which then places pressure on your periodontal ligaments. This causes the ligaments to widen, loosening your teeth. The aligners then move your teeth into proper alignment.
The length of your treatment depends on your specific circumstances. Typically, treatment with Invisalign® takes anywhere from 9 to 15 months, with most patients seeing the desired results in less than a year. During this time, you may go through anywhere from 18 to 30 sets of aligners. In rare cases, treatment may take up to two years.
See for yourself the before-and-after photos of an Invisalign® patient of Dr. Saghatchi’s.