You may be somewhat familiar with how the Invisalign® treatment works, but we’d like to take you through each step of the treatment process, from consultation to confident smile. Whether you’re considering treatment for yourself or someone else, knowing more about the entire process can help you be more confident in your decision to choose Invisalign and enjoy a better smile every day.
Your treatment begins after you select the experienced Invisalign Preferred Provider that you feel most comfortable with and schedule your initial consultation. Because you will be interacting with this doctor on a regular basis, you may even want to personally meet with a few providers before deciding which one is right for you. This is an important medical and financial decision. That's why choosing the right doctor and the right treatment plan is so essential. Keep in mind that not all dentists and orthodontists work with Invisalign, so it's important to find a doctor who has received the proper Invisalign training and can truly evaluate your needs and determine how Invisalign can help you.
During the consultation, you and your doctor will discuss your case in detail to determine if you're a good candidate for Invisalign. Invisalign now addresses many cases, from simple to more complex. Your doctor will determine if Invisalign is right for you. (Take the Smile Assessment ahead of time to see if you might be a good candidate.) This will also be your opportunity to ask any questions about Invisalign, costs , dental/orthodontic insurance, or any other concerns. See which doctors in your area are Invisalign Providers.
Your doctor will take x-rays, pictures and impressions of your teeth, which Invisalign will use to create a digital 3-D image of them. From these images your doctor will map out a precise treatment plan, including the exact movements of your teeth. Using this same technology, your doctor will even be able to show you a virtual representation of how your teeth will move with each stage of treatment.
Based on your individual treatment plan, a series of custom-made, clear aligners is then created specifically for you. These aligners are made of a smooth, comfortable, BPA-free plastic that won't irritate your cheeks and gums like traditional metal braces often do. Simply wear them throughout the day, and remove them when you eat or to brush and floss your teeth. As you wear each set of aligners, your teeth gently and gradually begin to shift into place. And because they're virtually invisible, most people won't even notice you're wearing them.
Approximately every two weeks, you will begin wearing a new set of aligners, advancing you to the next stage of your treatment. To monitor your progress, you will also have occasional checkups with your doctor, usually only every six weeks or so. At every stage, you will be able to see how much closer you are to having the smile that reflects the real you.
While every case is unique to each patient, treatment typically takes approximately a year for adults. For teens, the length of treatment is comparable to that of braces, but since your teeth won't be covered by wires and brackets, you'll be able to see improvement much sooner. For best results and a timely outcome, you should wear your aligners for 20 to 22 hours per day, throughout your entire treatment.