If you’ve been looking for a flexible way to straighten your smile, clear aligners can be a fantastic solution. Elm Tree Orthodontics is proud to offer Spark clear aligners to our Hamden patients. Dr. Desai sees patients every day looking to straighten their smiles but don’t want the appearance of metal braces. When you choose to trust your smile to us, you can rest assured you’re putting your oral health into the most experienced hands! Let’s take a look at clear aligners’ facts vs. fiction!
Clear aligners are the most popular alternative to traditional braces we have, and it’s not hard to see why. This innovative system offers exceptional results as braces but doesn’t require any brackets, wires, or bands to shift the teeth. While clear aligners have been in use for about twenty years now, there are still a few misconceptions out there about what clear aligners are and how they work. We will separate the fact from fiction below, so keep reading to learn the truth about clear aligners!
Fiction #1: Clear aligners takes longer to work than traditional braces
Understanding why this is fiction helps to know a bit about orthodontic appliances. In general, appliances will be either fixed or removable. Traditional braces are a fixed appliance, with the brackets attached directly to the front of the teeth. Invisalign aligners are a removable appliance, meaning no part is affixed to the tooth surface. This removability is one of the system’s most desirable features! The aligners are designed to be removed any time you eat, and when you brush your teeth, so there’s a bit more flexibility than you’d have with braces.
It’s also important to understand that orthodontic treatment of any kind requires patient compliance, but it is essential for success with the clear aligner system. Because the aligners are removable, it’s up to you to wear them as directed by Dr. Desai. That means keeping the aligners in for 20-22 hours each day throughout the treatment process. You are also in charge of switching the aligners out every week to the next in the series. This allows the aligners to keep up with the teeth’ movements. If these guidelines aren’t followed, it can result in longer treatment times and may even affect the overall results.
One of the questions we hear most frequently from patients is how long treatment will take. Whether you’re in braces or clear aligners, there’s no concrete answer for that! Every case is different, and all patients will respond to treatment in their way. On average, however, the total treatment time for most compliant clear aligner patients at Elm Tree Orthodontics will be about 6-18 months. This means that the treatment time for Invisalign can even be faster than it is with traditional braces!
Fiction #2: The Invisalign system is more difficult to maintain than braces
We’ve already looked at why patient compliance is an integral part of any orthodontic journey. Oral hygiene is another factor in how successful your treatment will be! A good dental hygiene routine is essential for everyone, but it can come with a bit of a learning curve for those in braces, especially at first. It can take some time to learn how to navigate the brackets and wires, which create pockets that are a perfect breeding ground for bacteria and plaque. You never have to worry about that with Invisalign, though!
Clear aligners are designed to be removed before you brush and floss, then replaced once you’re done. We recommend brushing thoroughly after every meal and flossing every night before bed for the best results. You’ll need to take good care of your aligners, too, by gently brushing them with water and a soft toothbrush. There are also special kits available for cleaning them if you prefer a more ready-made solution.
Food restrictions are also a thing of the past with clear aligners! Since crunchy and chewy foods can damage brackets and wires, braces patients need to avoid them throughout the orthodontic process. But Invisalign aligners are designed to be removed before eating, so you’re still free to eat all the things you usually would!
Clear aligners can be helpful in ways you might not normally consider, too. Because you can take them out for short periods, they can be an excellent option for athletes, musicians who play specific instruments, and for any special occasion when you want your natural smile to shine through, like senior photos, weddings, and prom.
Fiction #3: Treatment with Invisalign costs more than traditional braces
Compared to braces, which have been around for centuries in one form or another, the clear aligner systems are relatively new. When clear aligners first hit the market, they were pretty pricey. But as the treatment became more popular and accessible, the cost decreased accordingly. Dr. Desai considers several factors when determining the overall cost of your treatment, but clear aligners typically costs about the same as braces in our Hamden practice.
Once you’ve decided on a treatment plan with Dr. Desai, we’ll walk you through your payment options. In addition to accepting most major Connecticut insurance plans, we offer convenient financing through OrthoFi. It’s our goal to keep your treatment affordable and efficient! We’ll work with you to create a payment plan that fits your budget.
Fact: you’ll find your best smile with Elm Tree Orthodontics
Dr. Desai has successfully treated hundreds of patients with Invisalign in Hamden and the surrounding communities. This expertise allows him to use Invisalign to treat a wider variety of patients of all ages!
When you schedule a FREE consultation with us, Dr. Desai will examine your mouth and determine which treatment would be the best fit for your unique smile. If you’d like to learn more about how clear aligners could transform your smile, get in touch with us today to schedule a visit with our Hamden office!