If you’re considering wearing invisible braces to smarten up your smile, then what are you likely to be in for? With traditional metal wire braces everyone pretty much knew what they were likely to expect. We could all see what they looked like, including how uncomfortable the wearer was quite often, and we all knew that the process could take several years.
This common knowledge meant that people could easily make their mind up about teeth alignment, deciding whether or not to stick with what they already had, or undergo the treatment necessary to give them the smile they really wanted. From underbites to overbites, from crowded, overlapping teeth to gaps and even teeth which were at odd angles, metal braces have been the only solution for thousands of people for many years. But just recently that’s all changed.
Suddenly with the introduction of invisible braces and transparent aligners it’s all got a bit more complicated.
In the past if you were trying to make your mind up about whether to wear braces or not you’d probably find it fairly easy to be able to find someone who was wearing them, and ask them for their advice and opinion. But since by their very name invisible braces are rather difficult to see it’s become very difficult to be able to find anyone who’s wearing them in order to find out what you want to know.
You could of course go to your dentist and ask them, but just as you probably wouldn’t have done this before when considering wire braces, you’d still rather get the view of someone who’s actually wearing them, since they’re not looking to sell them to you and will give you a frank and honest opinion. That’s not to imply that dentists who provide invisible braces are dishonest, but you’re simply more likely to believe what someone tells you who has been wearing them than someone who stands to benefit financially from you wearing them! It’s just human nature!
But often it’s hard to know what to even expect.
You can’t spot someone wearing them, and so you have no real concept of what they’re going through, or what they have been through. To help put you more clearly in the picture, here’s a five step breakdown of what you can expect should you decide to go ahead and have clear braces fitted.
1. The Health Check
The first thing you’ll need to do is to have a thorough health check. Companies like Invisalign don’t fit their clear aligners on anyone who just walks through the door waving cash. They’re actually quite strict about the health of your teeth and gums, and if they don’t think that either you’d benefit from invisible aligners or your teeth or gums are not in a sound enough condition for aligners to be worn you won’t be accepted. If your teeth and gums are in good condition though then you’ll be able to move on to step two.
2. The Scan
Once your teeth and gums have been deemed healthy and the condition of your teeth determined to be suitable for aligners the dentist will take a very detailed mould of your teeth. This mould is then used to create a cast which is scanned into the computer, creating a highly detailed virtual reality 3D model of your teeth and gums. The dentist will then manipulate your teeth individually on the computer to create the ideal layout and final positioning. This information is then used to create a series of fortnightly stages progressing from the current alignment of your teeth to the desired end result. The computer then uses this information to create your first set of aligners.
3. The First Set
Once your first set of invisible braces is ready you’ll need to pop back to your Invisalign dentist and have them fitted. The dentist will make sure you’re comfortable with them, and that they fit properly. You’ll also be given advice on how to look after them, how long you’ll need to wear them for each day and you’ll also have a chance to ask them any further questions you have.
4. Two Weeks Later
A fortnight after your first pair of aligners have been given to you you’ll need to pop back to your dentist for the next set. This new pair will be slightly different from the first pair, and will help nudge your teeth incrementally towards the next step. You will continue like this, visiting your dentist for a new set of braces around once a fortnight throughout the treatment.
5. Six To Eighteen Months Later
The teeth alignment process is usually around half the time with invisible braces than it would be traditional metal braces. After as little as just six months you may be able to throw away your final set of aligners and enjoy your perfect smile. The whole experience is comfortable, painless and easy. If you don’t believe me, just find someone who’s wearing a set now. Oh…