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.
Invisalign in Lake Zurich offers more freedom, comfort, and discretion than traditional metal braces. While these clear aligners are popular for both teenagers and adults alike, you likely have many questions about them. For your convenience, we’ve gathered some of the most common questions we get about Invisalign below so you can learn more. If you don’t see the answers you’re looking for, don’t hesitate to give us a call.
It’s normal to experience slight discomfort during any orthodontic treatment, including Invisalign. When first wearing your clear aligners, your mouth will need time to adjust as your teeth shift. After a few days, the soreness should fade and the patient should feel comfortable and confident. This dull aching will return each time a patient switches to a new set of aligners in the series and the teeth continue to shift. Fortunately, this is much easier to manage and more comfortable than the mandatory tightening of traditional metal braces.
Invisalign results have the potential to be permanent, but only if the patient wears their retainer as instructed. Your Lake Zurich cosmetic dentist will guide you through how often you need to wear your retainer in the weeks, months, and years following your Invisalign treatment to keep your teeth in their new positions. Teeth are prone to shifting back out of place after orthodontic treatment, so wearing your retainer diligently is essential for making the most out of your hard work.
In the very beginning of your Invisalign treatment, we’ll impress upon you the important of acquiring a protective case for your aligners. Aligner storage cases help shield your aligners from bacteria or other particles that may otherwise land on them while they are out of your mouth. It should also protect them from damage if they’re dropped or picked up by a small child or pet. Most importantly, having a dedicated storage case will encourage you to not store your aligners in a napkin or on a countertop where they can be accidently thrown away or left behind.
However, should you damage or lose one or both aligners, you should call us right away. Wear your previous set of aligners in the meantime. Depending on where you are in your treatment, we’ll determine if it would be alright for you to move on to your next set of aligners in the series or if a replacement set needs to be ordered.
Every situation is different, but patients may be able to get Invisalign even if they wore traditional metal braces in the past. It will depend on the severity of the issue, such as overcrowding, gapped teeth, crooked teeth, or misaligned bite. We’ll be happy to see you for a consultation, where we’ll use advanced dental technology to evaluate your mouth and determine if Invisalign would be an effective choice for your unique situation.
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