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A person holding a clear aligner.Braces are one of the oldest forms of dental therapy. They’re essential for correcting many cases of underbite, overbite and misaligned teeth. But traditional braces have several disadvantages. Not only are they impossible for the patient to remove, many people are turned off by their metallic, high-profile appearance. It’s for these reasons that Invisalign in Green Hills has garnered so much attention in recent years.

What Is Invisalign?

Invisalign is an alternative treatment for cases of malocclusion (misaligned teeth). It can also correct many instances of underbite or overbite. Here’s how it works:

  • Your dentist performs measurements of your teeth and jaw to design a specific type of Invisalign aligners for your needs. In the past this required a series of painstaking visual tests and x-rays. This is no longer the case for practices that have access to an Itero intraoral scanner. These state-of-the-art digital devices enable the dentist to create amazingly accurate images of the patient’s oral profile within minutes.
  • The dentist sends this information to a lab that fabricates a series of Invisalign aligners specifically for the patient in question. Advancing technology has enabled the aligners to be created in less time than ever before, especially if the dentist uses an Itero scanner.
  • Once the aligners arrive, the patient wears each set for a week or so before switching to a new pair. Invisalign braces are made from light, transparent materials that are both comfortable and absolutely safe.
  • The patient may remove his or her Invisalign aligners for up to two hours per day to eat, brush or perform other daily tasks. He or she does need to clean the appliance. This requires only a soft-bristled toothbrush, some antimicrobial soap and standard denture cleaning tablets.
  • The patient sees the dentist every 4 to 6 weeks for a general checkup and refitting.
  • The total course of treatment usually lasts from 6 to 14 months. Once this is complete, the dentist will typically recommend that the patient wear a retainer at night to ensure that the benefits last for the long term.

It’s easy to say why Invisalign aligners are so popular. There’s no need for bulky metal components, rubber bands, or special procedures when brushing or flossing. Patients can eat their normal diet and engage in all their favorite activities. There are no sharp edges or wires to cause injury or irritate skin tissues.

Sometimes there’s a short adjustment period associated with Invisalign. Learning to speak while wearing the appliance may take a few days to master. In almost all cases the learning curve is short and the disruption to the wearer’s lifestyle is minimal.

Does Invisalign Work for Everyone?

Invisalign is best suited for adult patients with mild to moderate cases of malocclusion or jaw misalignment. Children and teens whose teeth are still maturing might not benefit from Invisalign therapy. In some cases, young patients can start with traditional braces and transition to Invisalign as treatment progresses. People with severe dental problems may require more aggressive forms of therapy. Only your dentist in Green Hills can tell you which type of treatment is best for you. Make an appointment to see him or her soon. You’ll soon find yourself feeling better and smiling brighter.

About the Author

Dr. Clayton Cummings earned his DDS degree from the University of Tennessee College of Dentistry. He’s a Gold level provider of Invisalign therapeutic services with years of expertise and experience in the field. You can reach his office online or by calling (615) 460-0123.