The Time Factor in Invisalign® Treatment
Invisalign® is a clear acrylic aligner used in orthodontic treatment to move teeth into their proper position gently. It is used to correct misaligned bites, crowding, and teeth gaps.
The treatment time while using Invisalign depends on various factors, but an average of 12-18 months is required for your teeth to be straightened appropriately. The results can be seen in as little as six months after beginning treatment.
Your dentist creates a 3D computerized model of your teeth that is used to plan the aligners. A series of aligners are designed to move the misaligned teeth in stages. Each aligner moves the teeth up to .33 millimeters in two weeks. It and is exchanged for the next aligner in the series until the desired results are achieved.
Types of Invisalign Aligners
The type of Invisalign used will determine the time required for treatment.
- Invisalign Teen
These aligners are specifically made for teenagers to encourage them to complete their orthodontic treatment. The trays on these aligners have blue dots that fade and ultimately disappear once the aligner is worn for two weeks. By observing the dots, you can encourage the teenager to wear the Invisalign for treatment to take a shorter time.
- Invisalign Lite
Invisalign Lite is used for straightening teeth that are mildly or moderately misaligned. It takes seven months and fourteen trays for you to have a straighter smile.
- Invisalign Express
It is a type of Invisalign used for minimal orthodontic correction or patients who have not worn their retainers as directed by the dentist. They are worn for six months or less.
- Invisalign Full
This type of aligner is suitable for several orthodontic corrections. Invisalign full treatment takes 12-18 months with a series of about thirty trays until treatment is completed.
- Invisalign Go
The treatment time for Invisalign Go is short since only 20 trays are used over four months for successful treatment. Only mild orthodontic cases are treated using Invisalign Go.
- Invisalign i7.
Seven aligners are used during treatment for about three months to treat milder alignment cases like slight crowding.
Factors that Affect the Treatment Time While Using Invisalign
- Follow-up with the specialist
Skipping scheduled appointments with your specialist will make your treatment longer since the Invisalign trays are switched for new ones during each visit.
- Commitment to the treatment plan
These aligners should be worn for 20-22 hours per day and removed only when eating, drinking, or cleaning. Most people find it hard to keep the aligners in place for these hours and take them out longer than necessary. The treatment will take longer in such cases.
- The distance
Teeth that need to be moved a significant distance will take more time to treat than those that need to be slightly shifted.
- The type of occlusion
Invisalign is used to treat issues like misaligned bites, spacing, or crowding. All these issues vary in complexity and will have different time estimates for the desired results to manifest.
Advantages of Invisalign over Traditional Braces
- Before commencing Invisalign treatment, your dentist will use modern scanners and computer software to show you the present state of your teeth and their visual representation at each stage of treatment, including the final stage. This motivates you and guides you on what to expect during treatment.
- They are easily removed while drinking, eating, flossing, or brushing. Wire braces can only be removed at the dentist. Therefore, all these activities are carried out while the braces are in the mouth, making them cumbersome. There are also food restrictions while using traditional braces.
- These clear aligners are almost invisible and are customized to mold your teeth, making them feel like your natural teeth. They are aesthetically pleasing and do not hinder you from carrying on with your activities confidently. Traditional braces are visible and may make you feel self-conscious while talking, smiling, or eating. This will affect your performance and confidence.
- Invisalign aligners have a comfortable, smooth surface compared to traditional braces made of wires that irritate your tongue, lips, and cheeks.
- Adjustments required while using traditional braces may be painful and will require longer frequent visits to the dentist. With Invisalign, there are no adjustments. You only need to change your aligner for the next one in the series.
- Normal teeth are not affected while using Invisalign aligners, as each tooth is moved individually. Traditional braces affect your other teeth by moving them out of position and back again during treatment.