No one wants crooked teeth. Not only can a crooked smile make you feel self-conscious around others, misaligned teeth are difficult to fully clean, which can lead to tooth decay and other oral health issues. Invisalign® is an innovative orthodontic treatment that can straighten your teeth without any metal brackets or wires. All across America, tens of thousands of people are choosing this effective treatment to straighten their teeth without the pain and unattractiveness of traditional metal braces.
If you live in or around Austin and would like to learn if Invisalign is right for you, please contact BridgeView Dental toady online or at 512-347-8299 to schedule a free consultation with LVI-trained dentist Dr. Lance Loveless. We welcome patients from Lakeway and West Lake Hills.
On this page, we will discuss a number of Invisalign-related topics, such as:
- What is Invisalign?
- What dental problems can Invisalign address?
- Benefits of Invisalign
- How does the Invisalign process work?
- How long does the Invisalign process take?
- Consequences of misaligned teeth
- Maximizing your Invisalign results
- Are the aligners painful?
- Is Invisalign right for me?
- Invisalign and TMJ treatment
- Schedule your free Invisalign consultation today
Invisalign is an effective alternative to conventional metal braces. Instead of connecting metal wires, brackets and rubber bands to your teeth, Invisalign uses a series of soft, clear plastic aligners to gently shift your teeth into alignment. Each aligner is custom-crafted through precise 3D computer mapping and design.
With the exception of eating, drinking, brushing and flossing, your aligners should be worn at all times, both day and night.
At other dental practices, patients are given new aligners every two weeks. However, at BridgeView Dental, we have honed the Invisalign process to where most of our patients are able to switch out their aligner trays in only one week, helping the entire process progress in half the time*.
Crooked teeth can present a complex oral health concern. Misaligned bites have been linked to tooth decay, gum disease, TMJ disorder and a number of related general health issues such as heart disease and diabetes.
Invisalign can be used to successfully treat a wide range of orthodontic issues, including:
- Open bite
- Crowded teeth
- Protrusive teeth
- Misaligned teeth
- Uneven teeth
- Gaps between teeth
There are a number of advantages to choosing Invisalign over traditional metal braces, including:
- Convenience: Invisalign aligners should be worn for at least 20-22 hours every day, but they are conveniently removable for meals and daily oral hygiene routines. The entire teeth straightening process is quicker than that of traditional braces, allowing you to achieve the results you want even faster.
- No change in diet: With traditional braces, the metal brackets and rubber bands require you to give up certain foods such as gum and popcorn. The Invisalign system allows you to enjoy all of your favorite foods; just be sure to brush and floss before placing the aligner back in your mouth.
- Less noticeable: One of the most popular aspects of the Invisalign system is that the clear aligners allow you to smile without the self-consciousness associated with traditional braces. Your friends and family will most likely not even notice that you are undergoing treatment.
- Less painful: Invisalign requires less maintenance and is less painful than conventional braces. You may experience some mild discomfort when first getting used to wearing the aligner trays, but this should subside as your mouth adjusts to the Invisalign system.
It’s easy to understand why Invisalign is one of the most popular orthodontic treatment options among adults and older teens. Thanks to its thin, clear plastic aligners, Invisalign is unobtrusive and practically unnoticeable, allowing for greater confidence throughout your course of treatment.
The Invisalign system works similarly to traditional braces: your teeth will be gradually shifted in a new position over a period of time. However, rather than having to deal with the maintenance, discomfort and unappealing aesthetics of metal braces, you will simply wear a series of customized, comfortable and removable clear plastic aligners.
The first step in the process is to complete a complimentary full oral examination and bite analysis with Dr. Loveless to determine your candidacy for the treatment. Once you and Dr. Loveless agree to proceed with the Invisalign process, he will use 3D imaging technology to create a digital impression of your teeth. This impression will be used to create your customized Invisalign aligners.
Depending on your specific circumstances, you will wear each aligner in the series for either one or two weeks before moving on to the next one. Each aligner will gently shift your teeth until your teeth have shifted to their desired position and the treatment is complete.
The amount of time your Invisalign treatment will take varies, depending on a number of factors such as the severity of your misalignment and what treatments may be needed before straightening your teeth. In most cases, patients can complete treatment in less than a year*. In many cases, Dr. Loveless can reduce the time needed for treatment even more by providing new aligner trays every week rather than every two weeks.
Misaligned teeth can affect more than just the beauty of your smile. Crooked teeth can lead to a number of oral health issues, such as:
- Gum disease
- Difficulty cleaning your teeth
- Excessive tooth wear
- Increased risk of tooth injuries
- Difficulty chewing
- Bad breath
- Diminished self-esteem and confidence
- Decreased overall health
Poor oral health is linked to a variety of serious health issues, from heart disease to diabetes. Straightening your teeth with Invisalign can improve your smile and help you lead a healthier, happier life.
As with any dental procedure, your commitment to the process helps to ensure you get the most out of your treatment. To help you get the best possible results from your Invisalign process, consider these helpful tips:
- Wear your trays for 22 hours a day: For best results, try to wear your trays at all times, except when you’re eating or brushing and flossing.
- Brush and floss after meals: Not only is a good oral hygiene routine beneficial to optimal oral health, it reduces the minor risk of infection during your Invisalign treatment.
- Keep your trays clean: Use a soft-bristle toothbrush to scrub your trays and soak them in a 1:1 water to hydrogen peroxide solution for 5-7 minutes. This helps to prevent bacterial growth and remove food particles.
- Avoid sugary beverages: Sodas and juices contain a high sugar content that can potentially form a sticky residue that can get trapped beneath your aligner tray.
No. The fact that Invisalign aligners are so much more comfortable than metal braces is one of the main benefits of the treatment. The aligners are custom-crafted specifically to fit the contours of your mouth, and the soft edges eliminate the irritation usually caused by the metal wires and brackets used with braces.
Invisalign is a great way to straighten teeth and correct mild to moderate bite alignment problems. Thousands of patients across the country prefer the Invisalign system to traditional metal braces because of its discreet straightening method and increased comfort. However, Invisalign is not right for everyone.
In order to be an ideal candidate for Invisalign, you should:
- Not smoke, or be willing to quit
- Have a fully developed mouth (adults and many teenagers meet this criteria)
- Be in good oral health with no untreated gum disease or cavities
The best way to find out whether or not Invisalign is right for you is to schedule a complimentary Invisalign consultation with Dr. Lance Loveless. During your consultation, Dr. Loveless will complete a thorough evaluation of your oral health and determine if you are a good candidate for treatment. In some cases, he may recommend treating other issues, such as cavities or gum disease before starting your Invisalign treatment.
Temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJ), refers to a group of disorders that causes pain in the jaw joints and supporting muscles. TMJ dysfunction is commonly categorized as:
- Arthritis: Degenerative joint disorder that affects the temporomandibular joint.
- Internal derangement: a displaced disc, dislocated jaw or injury to the condyle.
- Myofascial pain: discomfort or pain in the muscles that control the function of the jaw.
Bite misalignment can contribute to a variety of chronic pain issues related to TMJ. Depending on your situation, Dr. Loveless may recommend Invisalign as part of a comprehensive treatment plan to address conditions related to malocclusion.
If you’d like to schedule your free Invisalign consultation with Dr. Loveless, please contact BridgeView Dental today by completing the form on this page or calling 512-347-8299. We welcome patients from throughout the Austin area, including West Lake Hills and Lakeway.
*Results may vary.