October 3, 2022
Many parents in Manassas know about Invisalign®, the virtually invisible way to straighten teeth without metal braces. But I’m often asked for more information about Invisalign®.
In short, rather than wires and brackets, Invisalign uses a series of clear, removable aligners that have been custom-made for your teen’s teeth, a result of precise images I take with the sophisticated iTero Scanner. Your teen simply wears these aligners over their teeth and changes them out for a new set of aligners periodically—most often every two weeks. Little by little, your teen’s teeth gradually shift into place.
Here are the answers to the top five questions I’m asked about Invisalign:
When worn according to the customized plan I set in place, Invisalign can be as effective as traditional braces. In fact, the chances are very high your teen will be a candidate for Invisalign as it can treat many of the common issues we see. Call us to set up an appointment to find out for sure.
With Invisalign, the aligners are removable, so your teen can play sports, musical instruments and eat their favorite foods without the worry that braces will get in the way. Plus, it’s much easier to brush and floss normally to maintain proper oral hygiene.
Research shows that parents underestimate the extent to which teens feel self-conscious about their smile—and their appearance in general. Wearing braces can often make this lack of confidence even worse. Invisalign removes a potential source of anxiety, giving them more confidence during what can be a challenging time in their lives.
In fact, a recent study* found that only 22% of teens feel that wearing braces does/will boost their self-esteem; whereas, nearly half of teens report wearing Invisalign does/will boost their self-esteem (47%). Likewise, 40% of Teens reported that wearing braces would/does negatively impact their self-confidence during treatment; whereas, only 8% of Teens reported the same about wearing Invisalign aligners. After conversations with our Adult patients, we think the findings would be similar.
Invisalign is most effective when worn 20 to 22 hours per day and changed approximately every two weeks. In fact, Invisalign aligners have blue indicators that fade over time when used as directed so I can track compliance.
Invisalign often requires less time with your orthodontist than traditional braces do. There are no adjustments to make, no brackets to re-glue and no broken wires to fix. After the initial appointment, follow-up appointments are usually scheduled every four to six weeks.