Anyone who is interested in a clear teeth straightening treatment should visit our office to learn about how convenient it can be to improve their smile using this discrete and effective solution. Since straightening teeth with clear aligners is relatively new, we are often contacted by patients who are unfamiliar with the process and would like to learn more.
Below are some of the questions that we hear on a regular basis. To have additional questions answered, schedule an appointment.
Can teeth be straightened faster with clear aligners than with braces?
This is going to depend on the individual patient. However, there are some ways that wearing clear aligners can cut down on the overall treatment time. Primarily this has to do not with the treatment itself but with the fact that the aligners are switched out at home. Therefore, patients do not need to visit our office for wires to be adjusted or switched out.
We find that it can be challenging for some patients to coordinate their schedule and visit in a timely fashion for those appointments. If, for example, each appointment was delayed by two weeks, that would add months to a person's overall orthodontic treatment. Since the aligners do not require these office visits, patients will frequently shave off some of the treatment time and be done using orthodontics faster than they would have otherwise.
Do clear aligners need to be worn 24/7/365?
Since the aligners are worn during the day and night, many patients want to know why they are removable and if they are supposed to be worn all the time. We have found that if the patient wears them around 22 hours a day, the treatment time will not be increased. So, they do come out and they do not need to be worn all the time. Patients are supposed to take them out when eating, drinking anything other than water and brushing teeth.
How do aligners move teeth?
This teeth straightening treatment works by placing pressure on the teeth and causing them to move towards their permanent position. The aligners work in a series. Each one is worn for around two weeks and then replaced with the next aligner in the series. This allows for the appropriate amount of pressure to continue to be placed on the teeth as they are being straightened.
Can aligners improve bite issues?
This depends on what has caused bite problems in the first place. If they were caused by misaligned teeth, aligners will work to improve a person's bite.
Is it hard to speak when wearing clear aligners?
It usually only takes patients a couple of weeks to become accustomed to this teeth straightening treatment. During those first couple of weeks there may be challenges with speaking clearly, simply because it takes time to get used to having something in the mouth. However, this is temporary and most patients will find that they are comfortable, easy to speak with and do not cause any challenges.
How fragile are they?
The aligners are designed to be durable enough to be worn night and day without breaking or cracking. However, they are fragile enough to break if they are dropped on the floor or if someone tries to eat something hard while wearing them. For this reason, we recommend keeping them in a hard carrying case when not in the mouth and to take them out when eating.
How can I get started?
Anyone who is interested in this teeth straightening treatment should contact us to schedule a consultation and examination. If we determine this is the best way to straighten teeth we can move forward with creating the treatment plan. At that point, the aligners will need to be created in the lab. Once received, patients will begin to wear them and the process will be well on its way.
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