Invisalign is an excellent alternative to the look of metal braces. Instead of covering your teeth with brackets and wires, a simple, clear aligner is placed over your teeth. Although it sounds like an easy process, there are still many myths and mistakes that can hinder your success with Invisalign.
If you are curious about Invisalign or even if you already have your Invisalign aligners, here are some myths or mistakes you’ll want to avoid…
1. You aren’t a candidate for Invisalign if you have very crooked teeth.
Complex treatments are not easy with Invisalign, but they can be accomplished. The most important factor in treating complex problems with Invisalign is the experience and skill of your doctor. For doctors, using Invisalign is an acquired skill that has its own unique skill set that is only learned through experience. There is no special school that teaches Invisalign.
2. Invisalign is much more expensive than traditional braces.
The treatment is comparative to the cost of braces and can vary by where you live and how much work needs to be done. The average in the US is about $5,000. According to the Invisalign website, the cost can actually be lower than traditional braces in some cases. Invisalign is not a “more expensive” option to braces, it is just another option.
3. Not filing Invisalign with your insurance.
Many people assume that since Invisalign is primarily a cosmetic procedure their insurance will not cover it. Typically, Invisalign is correcting a dental problem and will be covered by your dental insurance. If you are unsure of your dental coverage, call our office and we will be happy to assist you.
4. “Invisalign is only for adults”.
While many of the images of Invisalign show adults wearing them, Invisalign can work very well for teenagers or adults. The line of “Invisalign” for Teens is specially developed for their mouths. Actually, Invisalign can offer numerous benefits to its teenage patients as they can remove them for sports. This avoids the risk of injury by metal braces.
5. Trying to eat or drink with the aligners.
Thanks to the removable nature of the aligners, you can eat and drink whatever you want while in treatment. In fact, you’re required to remove your aligners to eat and drink. So, unlike undergoing traditional treatment using wires and brackets, there is no need to restrict your consumption of any of your favorite foods and snacks unless instructed otherwise by your dentist. It is important that you brush your teeth after each meal and prior to re-inserting your aligners to maintain fresh breath and proper hygiene.
6. Smoking with the aligners.
While smoking in general is to be avoided, smoking with Invisalign aligners can lead to unsightly discoloration of the aligners. No amount of cleaning or soaking will work to get that yellow residue off.
Smoking with Invisalign is highly discouraged.
7. Using Invisalign as a quick fix to straight teeth.
Invisalign, like traditional metal braces, is not a quick fix. Invisalign treatment times differ for each patient, from 12 months to a couple of years. It depends on the severity of your needs and how attentive you are to your treatment plan. One plus that metal braces offer is that you cannot take them off, so while you are less in control of the treatment, you also don’t have anything to interrupt the treatment plan.
8. Doing a poor job of brushing and flossing properly.
Invisalign has the major plus of being a removable appliance. This allows you to simply remove it for cleaning. Eating and drinking should be avoided with the aligners in place. This can lead to bacteria accumulating under the aligners and damaging the teeth. Flossing is important to keep bacteria off of your teeth so that the bacteria don’t have the opportunity to grow undisturbed under the aligners.
9. Letting the aligners get dirty.
Invisalign aligners are meant to be clear and debris free. If anything gets on them, it is very noticeable. Keeping them clean is the best way to ensure they are doing their job.
10. Not wearing the aligners for the recommended time.
Invisalign is supposed to be worn from 20 – 22 hours per day every single day. There are no days off. The only time that they can be removed is for eating, drinking and for cleaning them and your teeth. If you play sports that are particularly physical, they can also be removed. In general, they need to be in place, on your teeth, for most of the time.
Invisalign takes the metal look of traditional braces and makes the treatment plan for straight teeth a better lifestyle fit for you with clear, custom aligners.
By following the recommendations from your dentist, your treatment plan with Invisalign can be very successful in the shortest time possible.
One of the best things about the whole process is that no one has to know you are even straightening your teeth!