Straightening teeth with Invisalign
I get comments on my teeth every now and then – I have Invisalign to thank for that!
I started them when I was 18 or 19 so the invisible option was great as I wasn’t keen on conventional braces.
How much does it cost?
You would need to consult your dentist but the average cost of Invisalign treatment ranges from $6,000 to $9,000. It is now around the same price as braces. But if you only need very minor correction, it could be around $5,000.
How long does it take?
The Dentist told me it would take the same time as normal braces, but I think they take a couple of months longer (as they are not in 100% of the time, and less sturdy) They said 1-1.5 years, but it ended up taking just under 2 years. Obviously it will be different for everybody, a friend did it and only needed them for a much shorter time. You would need to consult your dentist to find out your treatment plan.
What is the process?
They required an initial appointment to go over everything, and then a treatment plan and assessment. During the assessment they took a mould of my teeth, which was then sent off, and within a couple of weeks my Invisalign aligners were made.
Once they arrive they are fitted to your teeth by your Dentist and then you take home a series of aligners. Every 2 weeks you change aligners, putting new ones in - each set are different to slowly straighten your teeth. You'll go in for check-ups with your Dentist every 4-6 weeks to check your progress is on track and to receive your next series of retainers/aligners.
The aligners are worn day and night, except when eating, brushing or flossing teeth in order to complete the treatment. During the entire treatment process, you'll notice small movements, and your teeth will gradually move into an even smile.
What you should know?
Each time you put in a new aligner set (usually every 2 weeks) they are quite stiff to get on and your teeth/gums hurt for a couple of days. This is the same as braces when they get tightened! It is a tolerable pain, just your teeth moving in the way you want them to.
The aligners require little see through knobs (attachments) to be glued onto your teeth so they can clip on and move your teeth around better. These are noticeable and feel funny, but still much less noticeable than braces. You sometimes get people saying, you have something on your teeth!
I must say they are not 100% invisible, I was always conscious of them, but unless the person knew me, people generally couldn’t tell.
They are quite annoying, as you do have to take them out quite often to eat and drink. And because of this, it is important you don’t lose them as if you lose a set, you may not be ready to just jam the next set on, so you may have to head back into the Dentist, and this may set you back. You also have to give them a good wash with your tooth brush every morning/night.
You have to avoid things that can stain your teeth such as; coke, red wine, coffee etc. (which is the same case as braces) because you will get discoloration in your teeth. I found I could have a glass of wine or a coffee, but would then have to brush my teeth before putting them back in. Or if I was out for the night I would have to leave them out for a couple of hours, which they recommend not to do, but sometimes I found I had to – hence why my treatment may have taken longer than braces would have.
When I first had them fitted, I had a very little lisp for a week or so as it is hard to get used to having retainers on your teeth while talking! You do get used to them quickly though.
After your treatment is done and you and your Dentist are happy with the result, you can have a sturdy wire fitted to the back of your teeth. I recommend this as it is not noticeable and prevents your teeth moving (I didn’t get one on my bottom teeth as it is slightly noticeable on some angles). You also have to wear a retainer every night or second night while you sleep indefinitely. Also the same case as braces, this is so your teeth don’t slowly move back to their original spot over time. I wear mine every second night while I sleep, and my teeth haven’t moved since finishing Invisalign.
So while they took a while to get used to, they were a great alternative to braces for the age that I decided to straighten my teeth. They were a bit harder to manage, but much less noticeable than conventional braces. For younger individuals, I would recommend conventional braces as they require less responsibility, instructions, time and maintenance.
I checked the website, it has more FAQ’s and you can also find a provider (Dentist) near you here FIND Invisalign