What is Invisalign?
The Invisalign system is the virtually invisible way to straighten your teeth and achieve the smile you’ve always wanted. Using advanced 3-D computer imaging technology, Invisalign depicts your complete treatment plan, from the initial position of your teeth to the final desired position. Then a series of clear aligners are custom made for your teeth – and your teeth only – to move them little by little. Each aligner is worn for about two weeks before being replaced by the next, until the final position of your teeth is achieved. Your Invisalign treatment time will be determined by your doctor based on your specific needs.
What are the important benefits of Invisalign?
- Invisalign aligners are clear, so others may not notice that you’re wearing braces, making Invisalign a seamless fit with an active lifestyle.
- Invisalign is removable. This gives you have the flexibility to eat and drink what you want during treatment simply by removing the aligners when you eat. You can also remove the aligners to brush and floss as you normally would for fresh breath and good oral hygiene.
- Unlike traditional metal braces, Invisalign does not use metal brackets or wires that may irritate your mouth.
- You’ll spend less time in the doctor’s chair and having to schedule appointments, and more time out doing the things you love because Invisalign doesn’t require the adjustments that metal braces do.
- Importantly, Invisalign allows you to view your virtual results and treatment plan before starting treatment, so that you can preview how great you will look when your treatment is complete.
How many patients have been treated with Invisalign?
More than 1,000,000 patients worldwide have been treated with Invisalign, and the number of Invisalign smiles grows daily.
Will Invisalign fit my lifestyle?
- Time for a snack? No problem. Take out your aligners to eat or drink whenever you want.
- Since Invisalign is virtually invisible, chances are no one will even notice anything is different – until your new smile is revealed, of course.
- You can remove your Invisalign aligners, so you can brush and floss regularly and keep your teeth and gums healthy.
- You can occasionally remove your Invisalign aligners and enjoy a special night out.
- Be yourself with Invisalign. Since it’s clear, you don’t have to hide your smile while going through treatment.
- With Invisalign, it’s easy to make your smile picture perfect for that special occasion.
- Invisalign appointments work with your schedule. Most visits are in and out, with a quick progress check once every six weeks.
How does Invisalign compare to other treatment options? Which is least noticeable?
- Invisalign is clear and virtually invisible when worn over your teeth.
- Ceramic or “clear braces” are more aesthetic than traditional metal braces, but both ceramic and traditional metal braces are attached to the front surface of your teeth.
- Lingual braces are attached to the tongue side of your teeth, so there is nothing to see.
Which treatment option is more comfortable?
Comparatively speaking, there is very little discomfort with Invisalign treatment.
At the onset of treatment, both fixed braces and Invisalign may cause mild to moderate tooth tenderness, which typically subsides within five to seven days. Fixed braces rub against your cheeks and lips if they are attached to the front surface of the teeth and rub against the tongue if they are on the lingual or tongue side of your teeth. Fixed braces can detach from your teeth and have wires that can poke your cheeks or tongue, requiring an additional visit to the office for repair. Most discomfort caused by fixed braces subsides after seven to ten days.
Invisalign may employ small attachments on certain teeth during treatment. These attachments are covered by the aligners when properly worn, thus causing little, if any, discomfort. There are very few instances when additional visits are necessary with Invisalign. In some cases, Invisalign requires fewer visits.
Which appliance works better?
Traditional, ceramic and lingual braces are equally effective in moving the teeth as desired. The same holds true with Invisalign – with a small caveat. For some patients, it may be necessary to use fixed braces for a short while to finish treatment that had bene started with Invisalign.
The most important point to keep in mind is that each person has unique needs and needs to be treated individually. There are certain conditions that are best treated with Invisalign while other cases necessitate treatment with fixed appliances, for at least a portion of the treatment.
Dr. Andolino will provide a careful analysis of your orthodontic needs and let you know at your complimentary consultation which treatment options are best for you.
Which appliance works faster?
There are several factors that determine treatment time, but patient cooperation is usually the primary determinant in finishing treatment within the time estimate provided. This means sticking to the appointment schedule, avoiding restricted foods with fixed braces, and wearing aligners a minimum of 20 to 22 hours each day.
If accelerated treatment is important to you, Dr. Andolino will discuss how treatment with Acceledent or Accelerated Osteogenic Orthodontics can reduce treatment times by up to 50%. He was the first to offer what’s known as “speed braces” in New York City and one of the first to offer Acceledent, so he can speak very knowledgeably about this.
Will brushing and good oral hygiene be difficult?
For your orthodontic treatment to be successful, Invisalign must be worn 20 to 22 hours each day. This means that Invisalign can be removed when you eat and when you brush and floss your teeth, so your oral hygiene regimen can remain the same and you will not have any dietary restrictions.
Fixed braces can be damaged and break loose from the teeth if sticky, chewy, gooey foods are eaten. Foods like this must be avoided for the duration of your treatment. Proper oral hygiene is more difficult with fixed appliances as they can accumulate food and plaque if they are not properly cleaned.
Which option costs more?
The cost of orthodontic treatment depends on the severity of your case, the time involved and the appliance used.
Dr. Andolino’s fees are the same for Invisalign and labial braces. Dr. Andolino uses the most technologically advanced fixed braces available. The Incognito lingual braces are custom fitted for each tooth of each patient, and a robotic arm bends the wire to deliver the exact prescription that Dr. Andolino designs for your orthodontic needs. The fees for lingual braces reflect the additional laboratory fees necessary to fabricate your custom appliance.
Which option is best for me?
Dr. Andolino offers a complimentary exam and consultation where he will carefully listen to your needs and offer the best possible treatment options to fit your lifestyle.