Yes, it might seem surprising that what look like clear gum shields can actually straighten teeth, but it’s true! Just like fixed braces, they work by applying constant gentle pressure to teeth to realign them, but unlike fixed braces, Invisalign braces can be removed for eating, drinking and teeth-cleaning. You need to wear the virtually invisible braces for 22 hours a day and switch to a new aligner set every 7 to 14 days, moving you one step close to your end target.
Invisalign braces can work on a wide variety of cases, including the following: 1) Twisted, overlapping, crowded teeth; 2) Gapping, widely spaced teeth; 3) Over-, under- and cross-bites; 4) Relapsed teeth following previous straightening treatment. A consultation with our Specialist Orthodontist, Dr Lisa Hichens, will determine which treatment option is right for you.
Treatment time obviously depends on the degree of adjustment needed, but is probably shorter than you might be thinking, typically ranging from 3 to 18 months. However, it’s absolutely vital that you wear your Invisalign braces for the prescribed 22 hours a day or as instructed. Plus you’ll need to come in for reviews every 4 to 6 weeks, allowing us to monitor your progress and to give you your next series of aligners.
You mustn’t eat or drink anything – other than plain water – with the aligners still in, as otherwise you could damage and stain them. But the great news is that, unlike with traditional fixed braces, as long as you take out your aligners first, you can eat anything you like, including sticky, crunchy, chewy or hard foods, meaning you can eat and drink as normal during your treatment.
You’re best to wait until the end of your straightening treatment before having your teeth whitened for 2 main reasons: 1) Once your teeth are realigned, the whitening gel will be able to reach all tooth surfaces evenly; 2) One of the added bonuses of Invisalign braces is that you can use the aligner trays at the end of treatment to whiten your teeth, which is why we include home tooth whitening in our treatment price.
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