What is Invisalign®?
Invisalign is a series of clear, removable aligners that are worn full time (except eating) and usually changed every 2 weeks. They work by sequentially moving the teeth into their straight positions.
I am seeking a better smile and am concerned about the appearance and discomfort of braces. How does the Invisalign® aligners compare with braces?
The Invisalign aligners are removed when eating thereby allowing maximum flexibility with eating. This differs from fixed braces where care with eating is required and hard foods have to be avoided or modified in the way they are eaten ie: cutting apples into wedges before they are consumed.
In addition, the Invisalign aligners are removed when cleaning your teeth, making this process a breeze compared to toothbrushing and using floss with braces.
Unlike braces, the Invisalign aligners do not have any projecting hooks, and are thinner than the width of the mini-braces that we use, so our patients universally find Invisalign to be a very comfortable appliance, more so than braces.
What are the effects on speech with Invisalign®?
There can be some slight speech changes with the ‘s’and ‘th’sounds after the Invisalign aligners are first fitted. This quickly returns to normal within a few days as the aligners mainly only cover your teeth surfaces and do not extend onto the gums. If you are concerned with this aspect, you may arrange to have the 1st series of the Invisalign aligners fitted at the end of your work week.
I have a wedding (or formal) planned and I really do not want to show my crooked teeth or braces on smiling. What teeth straightening options are there for me?
You no longer need to hide or feel embarrassed about your smile. Invisalign or hidden braces attached to behind your teeth would be the most suitable option for you. Occasionally, if you have that special occasion, you may take out the Invisalign aligner for the duration of that day’s occasion and reinsert it during sleeptime. This is not possible with braces.
What is the Invisalign Clincheck?
With the Invisalign option, we are able to estimate what your new smile will look like at any particular point in time, prior to the actual Invisalign aligners being made. This is through the Clincheck- a computerized sequential projection of the planned teeth movements (see example below), which we will discuss with you to obtain your feedback, to discuss the position and duration of any tooth coloured attachments, elastics, projected outcome and the need for any auxiliary orthodontic treatment.
I am looking for a faster treatment time. What teeth straightening options are there for me?
You also may be interested in Accelerdent- a vibrating compact portable rechargeable mouthpiece which is worn for 20 minutes a day. Accelerdent is worn as an adjunct to any aligner or braces orthodontic treatment. Dr Chang is one of the few orthodontists in Sydney that is certified to offer this to our patients.
When combined with Invisalign orthodontic treatment, Accelerdent effectively allows you to cut down the wear of each Invisalign aligner from 2 weeks to 1 week. This can reduce your treatment time by as much as half. The direct benefit to you is a reduction in your treatment time. Read here on other ways to ensure your Invisalign treatment finishes on time or ahead of schedule
Is Invisalign® as good as braces?
This needs to be examined on a case by case basis. There are certain medical and dental teeth conditions where Invisalign better than braces is true.
In certain cases, several metal or clear or mini braces, mini-auxiliaries or a pre-Invisalign® appliance may need to be attached before treatment, during, or the end stages to enhance the movements. These are usually attached on the side teeth for up to 6 months. Combining these partial braces or auxiliaries with Invisalign treatment, allows us to shorten the overall duration of orthodontic treatment and expand the range of cases that can be treated with Invisalign orthodontic treatment.
This will be discussed with you at the initial consultation. While the majority of cases can be treated with Invisalign, in a small proportion, braces is better than Invisalign in delivering a more predictable result. These include teeth which are unerupted and impacted, very short teeth, multiple missing teeth, or where large teeth movements are planned.
Even in these instances, if you are an adult or require a need for discreetness, we have other options ranging from the outside clear braces to the hidden braces that are attached to behind your teeth.
What is the difference between seeing a dentist or an orthodontist for Invisalign® orthodontic treatment?
Orthodontists receive an additional 3 years of specialised education, beyond dental school, to learn the proper way to straighten and align teeth. Orthodontists practice orthodontics and dentofacial orthopaedics exclusively. All orthodontists are dentists, but only 6% of dentists are orthodontists.
Is safety and security important for you when having your teeth straightened? Remember that it is often more costly in the long term trying to correct an incomplete bite or smile, asides from the prolonged orthodontic treatment time and energy spent, when your expectations cannot be met. If this is important for you, then perhaps you should see an orthodontist.
Often you will notice at the consultation and Clincheck set-up appointment, the orthodontist goes into greater detail and depth about your treatment and how your concerns would be addressed. Here are some pointers to ask when deciding if to see a dentist or an orthodontist for your Invisalign orthodontic treatment.
How do I know I am seeing an orthodontist?
Look for the seal of the Australian Society of Orthodontics (ASO). Only orthodontic specialists can belong to the ASO.
How can I find out more about Invisalign braces treatment?
- Click here to find out more about Invisalign braces and health funds
- Why Invisalign braces treatment is suitable for weddings
- What to expect when starting Invisalign braces treatment
- Other common questions about Invisalign braces treatment
So give us a call or use our online booking form to schedule a consultation, so we can customize a plan to rejuvenate your smile with you.
Invisalign before and after
Check out some of our many Invisalign patients and their before and after photos below.