Getting braces is quite a commitment – one that can last for two or even three years at a time. This generally isn’t an issue for children, but many teens and adults have misgivings about having highly visible brackets and wires for that long. Invisalign in Lake Zurich offers older patients a way to get the straighter smiles they’ve been dreaming of in a more discreet (and in many ways, more convenient) orthodontic solution. Contact us today to learn more about the difference when you choose Invisalign in our Lake Zurich, IL dental office!
After we have digitally scanned your teeth, a separate laboratory will create a series of plastic aligners. Once they arrive, you’ll start wearing the first set, switching to new aligners every one or two weeks. The aligners can be removed during meals, so there aren’t any real diet restrictions during your treatment. You’ll also be able to brush and floss normally, and you can take the aligners out for periodic cleanings as well.
The aligners are made out of a special plastic and will be designed to fit snugly enough on the teeth to gently adjust them. The aligners work best when they’re worn for most of the day – 22 hours at minimum in most cases. Don’t forget to put them back in immediately after eating!
The first appointment is used to prepare for the start of the process. After a thorough dental exam, we’ll take a number of pictures of your teeth in order to create a virtual model, which can be used to design your aligners and plan the necessary adjustments. (This also gives you a preview of what kind of results you can expect.) At this point, we’ll be able to tell you how frequently you’ll need to visit our dental office and how long your treatment can be expected to last. You’ll receive your aligners at your next visit, and we’ll show you the proper way to take care of them. Unlike braces, we won’t need to make any adjustments during the treatment. We’ll simply need you to return every other month or so in order to confirm that everything is still on track.
Candidates for Invisalign treatment need to be able to leave the aligners alone for most of the day, which is why it’s normally only recommended for adults and teenagers – particularly those who are image conscious in one way or another. (If you get Invisalign for your teen, the aligners come with a blue compliance indicator that let you know whether they’re wearing them for the recommended hours.) We can use Invisalign even in particularly complex cases, and we’ll always work to accommodate for your unique needs.
Invisalign Teen is very similar to regular Invisalign treatment, with the addition of the compliance indicator that helps parents confirm their progress. Without brackets, wires, and bands to worry about, your teen can continue enjoying their youth to the fullest during orthodontic treatment.
Invisalign is different from braces in that it highly relies on patient compliance. The aligners won’t get in the way of your daily routine, but the trade-off is that you need to be diligent about wearing them for the recommended amount of time. Parents are sometimes concerned that their teens won’t stick to the treatment, but in addition to the blue indicator, studies have shown that on average, teens are actually better than adults when it comes to wearing their Invisalign responsibly! And in many cases, you can get the results faster than you would with traditional orthodontics.
The process for Invisalign Teen begins with an initial appointment. A 3D model of the mouth is created using a series of photos and X-rays. Not only does this help us plan the treatment, but it also gives us a way to show your teen firsthand how the process works and what the outcome will be. At this point, we can also lay out the long-term plan, which includes how frequently you’ll need to return to the dental office and when you’ll need to switch to the next aligner in the series. You’ll need to wait a few weeks for the aligners to be made before returning for the next appointment. On average, you’ll only need to bring your child in for an appointment every 6 to 8 weeks – or in other words, every other month.
It should be noted that Invisalign is typically better suited for mild to moderate orthodontic issues; more complex cases typically require braces. That said, Invisalign is useful for treating underbite, overbite, overcrowding, and gaps between the teeth. And thanks to the expertise of our in-house orthodontist and the rest of our team, we’re able to handle any number of difficult cases with Invisalign. Don’t be afraid to let us know about any unique accommodations that your teen might require; we’ll develop a treatment plan that works with their lifestyle.
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