You may be one of the lucky ones, with the perfect dental health report that everyone wishes for…great healthy gums and teeth, no cavities detected and a perfectly aligned smile. However, if your dental examination reveals teeth that are crowded, or spaced too widely it could indicate some serious underlying problems.
Red gums, and swelling around the gum area could be one of the signs that all is not well with the alignment of your teeth. Over time, this will generally worsen and could result in speech or chewing difficulties, an improper bite, jaw joint issues and the eventual wear and tear on tooth enamel.
Dentists will often prescribe braces to correct these problems, but permanently fixed braces can present their own set of challenges. Conventional braces can trap food in the brackets and wires. This leads to plaque build-up and this can eventually result in tooth decay. Not to mention the fact that braces are not the best aesthetic option – especially for adults or teenagers. These days, the decision to have metal braces fitted could lead to as many problems as not having them.
One revolutionary answer is Invisalign. Invisalign braces incorporate the use of a series of clear, specially fitted aligners that are almost invisible. These braces are made from surgical grade polyurethane. They are comfortable, and easy to remove, which makes for easy brushing and flossing, so no more trapped food and difficult cleaning processes. The way it works, patients are fitted with a new set of aligners in their treatment period every fortnight or so. There is far less pain involved than with the adjustment of conventional metal braces, and far fewer visits back to your orthodontist or dentist. The beauty of Invisalign is that the braces can be removed when eating or drinking, so there are far less restrictions on your social life, or your every day life when it comes to meal time.
INSTALLING INVISALIGN: Your orthodontist, or dentist will start by doing a complete dental exam, including dental impressions and x-rays of your teeth. These are sent to Align technologists and subjected to a CT scan. A computer then makes a 3D model, and special software predicts and simulates the movement of your teeth. Once this has gone through the process, a plastic resin aligner is designed for every stage of your alignment.
LENGTH OF TREATMENT: One of the benefits of Invisalign is that if you are only suffering minor teeth crowding or spacing, your treatment with Invisalign could be as short as six months. Even so, the aligners should be worn up to 22 hours every day, otherwise your treatment time may increase. It’s imperative that you keep the aligners in for the prescribed length of time each day as failure to do so could result in the next aligner in your series not fitting properly. If this happens, you will have to undergo new impressions and records, which will of course add to the cost.
Since 1998, since the invention of Invisalign over 1.5 million patients have regained a confident, healthy smile using this state of the art technique.
Vanessa Blake is a freelance writer and health freak with a ridiculous general knowledge of nutrition and the body. No wonder she decided to study for a Diploma of Nutrition in 2003. She also loves yoga.