Invisalign - Technology That Gives Patients More Options
Orthodontics is the specialized branch of dentistry that focuses on aligning the patient’s teeth and bite to a proper balance and harmony. There are many advantages to straight teeth that go beyond looks, a properly aligned bite and teeth lead to a healthier mouth and body. Orthodontics can treat a variety of conditions including crowded teeth, crooked teeth, large gaps between teeth, and over/under/open/crossbites. We have two dentists here at Northridge Dental Group that specializes in this branch of dentistry with Mona Entezam, DDS and Sahar Rezvani, DDS. The Invisalign system is quite simple.
Invisalign, a system that straightens your teeth without the use of wires or brackets by using a series of clear, customized, removable appliances called aligners. Using a combination of 3-D computer technology and orthodontic science, the Invisalign system is a comfortable alternative to traditional metal braces. Invisalign receives impressions of your teeth from your orthodontist and creates a virtual treatment plan that shows the projected movement of your teeth from the beginning to the end of treatment. The patient then receives a customized set of aligners, usually wearing each set for two weeks until they have finished the series. The aligners are precisely calibrated and manufactured for each individual treatment plan and are only removed to eat, brush and floss.
Patients rave about not only the aesthetics of this new technology but the convenience as well. Patients can brush and floss normally and eat and drink what they want. Also, there are no wires, metal, or brackets to cause mouth abrasions, which is a concern for many patients with traditional metal braces.
Invisalign Frequently Asked Questions
Invisalign can help you get the great smile you’ve always wanted because it’s Invisible, so no one can tell you’re straightening your teeth. So now you can smile more during treatment as well as after.
Q: What is Invisalign?
A: Invisalign is the invisible new way to straighten teeth without braces. Invisalign uses a series of clear, removable aligners to gradually straighten teeth, without metal or wires.
Q: Does Invisalign really work?
A: Yes. In both clinical research and in orthodontic and dental practices nationwide, Invisalign has been proven effective at straightening teeth.
Q: How does Invisalign work?
A: Invisalign uses 3-D computer imaging technology to depict the complete treatment plan from the initial position to the final desired position from which a series of custom-made Aligners are produced. Each Aligner moves teeth incrementally and is worn for about two weeks, then replaced by the next in the series until the final position is achieved.
Q: What are the primary benefits of Invisalign?
A: There are four primary benefits of Invisalign: Invisalign is nearly invisible – you can straighten your teeth without anyone knowing. Invisalign is removable – you can eat and drink what you want in treatment; you can also brush and floss normally to maintain good oral hygiene. Invisalign is comfortable – there are no metal brackets or wires to cause mouth irritation; no metal or wires also means you spend less time in the doctor’s chair getting adjustments. Invisalign allows you to view your own virtual treatment plan before you start – so you can see how your straight teeth will look when your treatment is complete.
Q: What are Aligners made of?
A: Aligners are made of clear, strong medical-grade plastic that is virtually invisible when worn.
Q: What do Aligners look like?
A: Aligners are nearly invisible and look similar to clear tooth-whitening trays, but are custom-made for a better fit to move teeth. Some orthodontists and dentists have referred to them as contact lenses for teeth.
Q: Is this a new way to straighten teeth?
A: For years, orthodontists and dentists have used removable appliances for limited treatment. Today, with the application of computer technology, Invisalign treats a broader range of cases with greater precision.
Q: How old is the company?
A: Align Technology, Inc., the company that manufactures Invisalign, was founded in 1997.
Q: How old is this technology?
A: In 1945 Dr. H.D. Kesling envisioned that one day, modern technology would enable the use of a series of tooth positioners to produce the kinds of movements required for comprehensive orthodontic treatment. Align has made this vision a reality. Using advanced computer technology, Align generates Invisalign, a series of customized appliances, called Aligners. Each Aligner is worn sequentially by the patient to produce extensive tooth movements in both upper and lower arches.
Q: How many patients are being treated with Invisalign?
A: Currently, doctors are treating more than 40,000 patients. The number grows daily.
Q: Do doctors need special training in order to use Invisalign?
A: While Invisalign can be used with virtually any treatment philosophy, specific training is needed. All orthodontists and dentists interested in treating patients with Invisalign must attend a workshop before cases will be accepted from their office.
Q: How does Invisalign effectively move teeth?
A: Like brackets and archwires, Invisalign Aligners move teeth through the appropriate placement of controlled force on the teeth. The principal difference is that Invisalign not only controls forces but also controls the timing of the force application. At each stage, only certain teeth are allowed to move, and these movements are determined by the orthodontic treatment plan for that particular stage. This results in an efficient force delivery system.