Today Invisalign® is one of the most popular and effective orthodontic treatments available. Perhaps you’ve already heard, Invisalign aligners have a clear appearance that makes them virtually unnoticeable during treatment. As an alternative to traditional metal braces, you can remove Invisalign aligners when necessary — a feature our patients appreciate during meal times.
Yet, there are many things about Invisalign most of our patients are surprised to discover. Southern California General & Cosmetic Dentistry, led by Dr. Ryan Fait and his team, are here to tell you about three facts you may not know about Invisalign.
1. You may lose weight
Something you may not expect is to lose weight during the first few months of your Invisalign treatment. One of the advantages of wearing Invisalign is that the aligners can be removed at any time. While this is true, you need to wear your aligners for about 20 to 22 hours a day. Only then will you be able to correct the alignment of your teeth in about 12 to 18 months.
This often means our patients only remove their aligners for the standard three meals a day, and they stop consuming unhealthy snacks between meals. We also encourage our patients to avoid drinking alcoholic beverages and soda while their aligners are in. These lifestyle changes often result in steady weight loss in the first few months of the treatment.
2. Lots of brushing and flossing
A similarity between Invisalign aligners and braces is that you must keep your teeth clean by brushing and flossing after every meal. Brushing will prevent your teeth from accumulating sugar, starch, and carbohydrates when you wear your aligners. Flossing will remove any excess food lodged in the crevices between your teeth. We recommend you use a soft-bristled toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste for the best results.
Since you can remove your Invisalign aligners you must also clean your aligners before putting them back on. We will provide you with an Invisalign cleaning system that will clean your aligners in about 15 minutes. This will help kill any bacteria and food left on your aligners.
3. Invisalign is not for everyone
Unfortunately, Invisalign isn’t meant to treat all cases. The treatment is proven most effective with teens and adults. Children are still growing and developing which is an obstacle for aligners that are designed to perfectly match your teeth.
The treatment is only meant for mild to moderate cases of crowded teeth or spacing issues. More severe problems, such as large overbites, underbites, or crossbites that require orthodontic procedures or oral surgery to shift the jaw, aren’t normally fixed with Invisalign.
If you have gum disease or cavities we need to resolve those issues before we can give you aligners. If you have dental implants, bridges, or TMJ issues Invisalign may be difficult but these aren’t absolute disqualifiers.
To find out if you are a good candidate for Invisalign, book a consultation with Southern California General and Cosmetic Dentistry. You can book an appointment by phone or online.