Is Invisalign Worth It?
Before Invisalign® burst onto the scene in 2000, braces were pretty much the only way to straighten teeth, fix bites, and correct other orthodontic issues. By providing an alternative to braces that were more flexible and discreet, Invisalign quickly gained popularity with adults and teens who wanted beautiful smiles.
Burke & Redford Orthodontists have been treating Invisalign patients in Temecula and Lake Elsinore since the year 2000 when it first became available to the public. Dr. Burke was among the first group of Invisalign trained orthodontists in the nation. Dr. Redford has received extensive training and is an expert in clear aligner treatment.
Invisalign or Braces?
Both Invisalign and braces straighten teeth, close gap teeth, and fix other orthodontic issues. However, the decision about which treatment option to use will depend on numerous factors, including the type and extent of orthodontic problems that need to be corrected.
Unlike braces that use wires and brackets to straighten teeth, Invisalign uses a series of transparent, customized aligners (trays) to reposition, straighten teeth and align bites. The trays are FDA-approved and free from BPA, BPS, latex, and gluten. This makes them a safe alternative to braces.
Patients switch to a new tray every 1-to-2 weeks. Office visits are scheduled approximately every 8 weeks to check on progress and ensure teeth are moving according to the treatment plan. These occasional office visits are crucial as it is not uncommon for certain teeth to get “off track” with clear aligner systems. These visits allow the orthodontist to make needed adjustments to successfully achieve a good final result.
The primary reasons people often choose Invisalign over braces include:
- Transparent Material. Most people don’t notice when someone is wearing a tray because it is clear. The fact that the aligners are virtually undetectable is one of the main reasons that patients choose Invisalign over braces. However, ceramic braces and Damon Clear braces also provide patients with inconspicuous options.
- Removable for Eating. This means a patient can eat foods (such as popcorn at the movies) that should be avoided with braces.
- Removable for Brushing and Flossing. Braces require special flossing techniques and attention to keep teeth clean. Because Invisalign trays can be removed, patients can maintain their regular oral hygiene routine. This is ideal for patients who may not be inclined to follow the brushing and flossing instructions required for braces.
Despite its many advantages, Invisalign is not for everyone.
- Invisalign is most predictable for patients who only need a mild alignment with teeth that are in good condition, as well as permanent incisors and first molars that are fully erupted and not impacted.
- The trays must be worn 20-22 hours a day, or treatment will be ineffective. Complying with this aspect of treatment can be difficult for some patients, which makes braces a better treatment option.
- The aligners can be misplaced or lost, which is not a problem with braces.
- For movement of teeth with aligners to be effective, tooth colored attachments are placed on certain teeth. While not as conspicuous as braces, these attachments are not completely invisible.
Invisalign for teens is becoming increasingly popular. To address specific issues related to teenagers, Invisalign introduced Invisalign Teen in 2008. Although Invisalign Teen is generally the same product, there are a few key differences.
- Compliance Indicators. Invisalign Teen aligners have small blue dots that fade away after the indicated amount of wear. Because some teens don’t always wear their aligners as prescribed, the blue dots will fade only when the aligners have actually been worn for an adequate amount of time, which is important for proper tooth movement to take place.
- Eruption Tabs. Many adolescents still have growing teeth. Invisalign Teen includes a special feature that allows it to evolve as new molars erupt—helping to guide the teeth into the ideal position.
How Long Does Invisalign Take?
Treatment times with Invisalign are dependent upon the complexity of the treatment plan (how much tooth/bite movement is needed) as well as how quickly an individual’s teeth move. Similar to how each person has a unique metabolism rate, each orthodontic patient has a unique rate of tooth movement. Some people’s teeth move very quickly. Other’s teeth move more slowly. The actual time in treatment will vary depending on a patient’s unique orthodontic needs and their individual biology (personal rate of tooth movement). Treatment time estimates as well as a treatment plan timetable are outlined clearly during the initial exam appointment.
Does Insurance Cover Invisalign?
Invisalign is covered by most forms of orthodontic insurance. Our staff works with patients to determine a flexible payment plan that meets a their needs. Also, our insurance specialist will help maximize insurance benefits to make orthodontic treatment more affordable. We do offer in-house financing with no interest.
You’ve found Best Invisalign Orthodontist in Temecula and Lake Elsinore in the Inland Empire for 30 Years. Contact our offices in Temecula or Lake Elsinore by calling our main office at (951) 699-8011 or fill out the Schedule a Consultation form on our website anytime. We will schedule a time to discuss whether Invisalign is a good treatment option for you or your teen.