When it comes to quality dental care, you want options. Of course it’s important to find a dentist who excel in standard procedures like cleaning, x-rays, fillings, and gum health, but what if you’re looking for more than that? Many people are interested in cosmetic dentistry, and the field has been growing quickly in recent years. It’s easier than ever to find a fantastic family dentist that also does quality cosmetic work.
There are a variety of reasons an individual may be interested in cosmetic smile correction treatment. It is nothing to be ashamed of either, many people suffer from issues with their teeth that drag down their confidence. One of the most common reasons an individual may seek out treatment is crooked or misaligned teeth. It can be quite frustrating to be an adult with crowded teeth that just don’t look great when you smile. For a variety of reasons, many adults prefer to avoid having metal braces in their mouths. Fortunately there is another option. Invisalign has been around for over 15 years now, and have shown fantastic results.
Let’s take a closer look at this product including the history and the aligners work. Who knows, you may even find that Invisalign is the perfect device for you.
Invisalign is a relatively new product on the cosmetic dentistry scene. The company Align Technology was founded in 1997, after inventor Zia Chishti dreamed up the product while undergoing orthodontic treatment. He joined with a team of Stanford students, obtained funding, and began developing their product. They used CAD models and early 3D printers to create their first aligners. The FDA approved Invisalign in 1998 and sales began in 1999.
At first things were sluggish, and the original creators of the company left before it was ever profitable. Orthodontists and cosmetic dentists were hesitant to adopt Invisalign, because the product was not developed by professionals with orthodontic or dental experience. However, during the mid 2000s things began to turn around. Results were showing that Invisalign was a reliable product.
In 2003, for the first time since it’s beginning, Align Technology was profitable. The company began expanding out of the United States in 2005 and has been steadily growing since. By 2008, over half a million patients had used the Invisalign system to straighten their teeth, and by 2012 the number had reach over two million. The company offers a variety of training classes for dentists and orthodontists who offer the product in their offices.
Designing the Aligners
Invisalign is able to offer extremely precise treatment due to the method of designing the aligners. That means Invisalign has the advantage of being highly accurate in addition to comfortable and discreet. Over the course of treatment the patient will use a variety of aligners that get progressively closer to straight. A mold of the patient’s teeth is taken and put into a computer program designed specifically for Invisalign, and then are printed using a 3D printers. The aligners are swapped out every two weeks, but it’s not a preset course. Instead the new aligners are adjusted to fit the shit that has occurred in he weeks prior. This makes treatment especially efficient.
How Does it Work?
The custom-made aligners area transparent plastic tray that fits directly over the patient’s teeth. Each set will be worn for a prescribed amount of time, generally two weeks. Gradually the teeth are shifted into the desired position. The shift is overseen by a dentist every step of the way, as visits are frequent. However it is imperative that the patient wears the aligners at least the prescribed 20 hours per day or they may not be effective. The only time they should be removed is for eating, drinking, or cleaning. The typical course of treatment is nine to fifteen months.
The Advantages of Invisalign
Obviously one of the biggest advantages the Invisalign system has over traditional braces is its transparency. Experienced kids dentists may not find issues with recommending children for braces, but adults often do not want mouths full of metal. It’s uncommon enough that people desire other solutions. The fact that people can’t see the treatment as it takes place is a huge advantage. Another benefit to Invisalign is the fact that you can remove for cleaning and eating. Braces and clunky and easily get food stuck in them. You even have to avoid certain foods altogether, which can be a real pain. With Invisalign, you can eat what you want, so long as you clean your teeth exceptionally well and wear your aligners at least 20 hours per day.
It’s plain to see why many people choose Invisalign over traditional braces.