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What Is Invisalign and How Does It Work?
Q: What are aligners made of and what do they look like?
A: The virtually invisible aligners, which are made of a thermoplastic material uniquely developed for the Invisalign treatment plan, look similar to teeth-whitening trays. A series of Invisalign aligners are custom-made for you, to move your teeth in the sequence determined by Dr. Paliani.
Q: How do the aligners straighten teeth?
A: Over the course of treatment, you will be supplied with a series of aligners. Each aligner will make slight adjustments to tooth position, a process that is mapped out in advance by Dr. Paliani, specifically for your situation. When the aligners are placed on the teeth, they cause the teeth to gradually shift from their current position. After 1-2 weeks, you will begin using the next set of aligners, which will continue the teeth straightening process.
Q: How will Invisalign effectively move my teeth?
A: Through the use of Invisalign's patented thermoplastic design, Invisalign aligners move your teeth through the appropriate placement of controlled forces. The main difference is that Invisalign not only controls the force, but also the timing of the force application. During each stage, only certain teeth are allowed to move. These movements are determined by Dr. Paliani as he maps out your unique Invisalign treatment plan.
Q: What are the primary benefits of Invisalign?
A: Invisalign aligners are virtually invisible. No one may even notice that you're wearing them, making Invisalign a seamless fit with your lifestyle. Invisalign aligners are removable. For the best results and a timely outcome, aligners should be worn for 20 to 22 hours per day. However, unlike with traditional braces, you have the flexibility to remove your aligners to eat and drink during treatment. You can also remove the aligners to brush and floss as you normally would, for fresh breath and good oral hygiene. There are no metal brackets or wires that could cause irritation to your mouth, an advantage over traditional braces. Plus, since your office visits during treatment don't involve metal or wire adjustments, you'll likely spend less time in the doctor's chair. Invisalign allows you to view your virtual results and treatment plan before you start so you can see how your straightened teeth will look when your treatment is complete. Instead of imagining how much better it can be, you'll be able to see it for yourself.
What Is the Invisalign Treatment Process?
Q: How do I get started with Invisalign?
A: It's simple - first take Invisalign's Self Assessment to see if Invisalign is right for you. Next, contact us to make an appointment. We offer free Invisalign consultations. Make sure you trust your smile to an experienced Invisalign Provider. Contact Dr. Bruno Paliani, a Premier Preferred Provider, today!
Q: How often must I wear the aligners?
A: We find that aligners are most effective when worn 20 to 22 hours per day and removed only for eating, brushing and flossing.
Q: How often must I come in for appointments?
A: Dr. Paliani will schedule Invisalign follow-up appointments usually about once every 6-10 weeks. The goal of these visits is to ensure that your treatment is progressing as planned.
Q: What are "attachments", "power ridges" and "bite ramps"?
A: Attachments are bumps in the aligners. The attachments are tooth-coloured resins bonded to the teeth. These attachments are placed for specific tooth movements and their use will be individually determined for each patient. Power ridges are small rectangular wells that act as pressure points usually placed near the gumline. Their use will be individually determined for each patient as well. In order to correct deep bites, bite ramps may be placed on the inside of the upper front teeth. These are rectangular bumps on the inside of the upper front teeth. These will help keep the back teeth apart slightly so it will be more difficult to put direct pressure on back teeth.
Q: Will Invisalign Treatment be painful?
A: While Invisalign moves your teeth without the pain and anxiety metal braces can cause, some people experience temporary discomfort for a few days at the beginning of each new stage of treatment. This is normal and is typically described as a feeling of pressure. It's also a sign that Invisalign is working, as it moves your teeth to their final destination. This discomfort typically goes away in a couple of days.
Q: How long will treatment take?
A: The length of treatment depends on the severity of your case and can only be determined by Dr. Paliani; however, the average case takes about 12-15 months for adults. The length of time necessary for a teen patient may be even less.
Q: Can I just wear the aligners when I sleep?
A: No. The aligners must be in place a minimum of 20 to 22 hours a day for the treatment to be effective.
Q: Will wearing Invisalign aligners affect my speech?
A: Similar to other orthodontic treatments, Invisalign aligners may temporarily affect the speech of some people, and you may have a slight lisp or difficulty making specific sounds for a day or two. However, as your tongue gets used to having aligners in your mouth, any lisp or speech difficulties caused by the aligners should disappear.
Q: Are there restrictions as to what I can eat while in treatment?
A: No. Thanks to the removable nature of the aligners, you can eat and drink whatever you want while in treatment. In fact, you're required to remove your aligners to eat but may be kept on your teeth for most drinks. So, unlike undergoing traditional treatment using wires and brackets, there is no need to restrict your consumption of any of your favorite foods and snacks unless you are instructed otherwise by Dr. Paliani. Also, it is important that you rinse your mouth, chew sugarless gum or brush your teeth after each meal and prior to reinserting your aligners to maintain fresh breath and proper hygiene.
Q: Will smoking stain the aligners?
A: We discourage smoking while wearing aligners because it is possible for the aligners to become discoloured.
Q: Can I drink alcohol with the aligners in?
A: Because of the high sugar content in alcohol, a moderate amount would be fine to consume, as long as care is taken to clean the teeth and the aligners soon after so as not to trap sugar between them. The same applies for any sugary beverage.
Q: Can I chew gum while wearing the aligners?
A: No, gum will stick to the aligners. We recommend removing your aligners for all meals and snacks. The ideal time to chew gum would be just before placing the aligners back on.
Q: How often must I wear my aligners?
A: We find that aligners are most effective when worn 20 to 22 hours per day and removed only for eating, brushing and flossing.
Q: How often must I see Dr. Paliani for follow-up appointments?
A: Dr. Paliani & his staff will schedule regular Invisalign follow-up appointments (by email) usually about once every 6-10 weeks. The goal of these visits is to ensure that your treatment is progressing as planned, that the aligners are fitting well and to evaluate if any minor tooth reshaping is required.
Q: What are the aligners made of and what do they look like?
A: The virtually invisible aligners, which are made of a thermoplastic material uniquely developed for the Invisalign treatment plan, look similar to teeth whitening trays. They are stiffer and thinner than teeth whitening trays. A series of Invisalign aligners are custom-made for you, to move your teeth in the sequence determined by Dr. Paliani.
Q: Do Invisalign aligners or retainers contain Bisphenol-A (BPA)?
A: No. Invisalign aligners and Retainers do not contain Bisphenol-A or phthalate plasticizers. These aligners and retainers are made with USP Class VI medical-grade, high molecular weight, polyurethane resins. Tests have been conducted to determine the biocompatibility of these materials, and show that they are biocompatible and pass all applicable regulatory requirements and thresholds for human wear in the mouth. Of course, as with any medical device, you should consult with Dr. Paliani about your aligner or retainer treatment and any applicable risks of use.
Q: How old is the company?
A: Align Technology, Inc., the company that manufactures Invisalign, was founded in 1997. Align Corporation did not enter Canada until 2002. Dr. Paliani was one of the first dentists in Southwestern Ontario to be certified to begin using Invisalign for his patients.
Q: Has the FDA cleared Invisalign?
A: Invisalign aligners are classified as Class II medical devices by the FDA, and Align Technology, Inc., received the necessary 510K clearance from the FDA to be able to sell and market the Invisalign system in 1998
Q: What is the minimum age of patients that can be treated with Invisalign?
A: Invisalign Teen is appropriate for patients who have shed all of their baby teeth and have second molars at least partially erupted this includes most teens. We have treated patients as young as 11 years old. Contact Dr. Paliani for a complimentary consultation at any time to see if your pre-teen is or will soon be an Invisalign candidate.
Q: What's the best way to clean my aligners?
A: Your aligners can be cleaned by brushing them and rinsing them in cold water. Retainer Brite tablets are also great at removing a build-up of food debris or stains on the internal aspect of the aligners. These are provided to our patients throughout treatment. Invisalign also recommends to use the Invisalign cleaning kit, available for order at www.invisalignstore.com as an alternative.
Q: What happens after treatment to prevent my teeth from moving again.
A: This varies from person to person and depends on the outcome of the treatment. Most patients will need a clear plastic retainer similar to the ones Invisalign makes, such as Align Technology's Vivera Retainer, which is worn at night. Discuss this with Dr. Paliani as every patient is different, and outcomes vary.
Q: I am currently wearing braces. Can I make the switch to Invisalign?
A: Since Dr. Paliani uses Invisalign exclusively as a modality to straighten teeth, treatment with the dentist providing traditional braces would have to be discontinued in order for Dr. Paliani to begin Invisalign Treatment.
Q: Since having my braces removed, my teeth have shifted. Can Invisalign fix this?
A: Yes! A number of patients previously treated with traditional braces with subsequent tooth movement can straighten their teeth with Invisalign. Adults can have their teeth straightened again, many times with improved arch shape and esthetics, without having to go through the trauma and social awkwardness of wearing metal braces once again.
Q: I currently have Veneers. Will Invisalign work with them?
A: These situations usually require Dr. Paliani to evaluate your current situation. If Veneers and Crowns are present, in most circumstances, these teeth can be moved with the aligners as well. Dr. Paliani has also used Veneers many times in conjunction with Invisalign Treatment to obtain the most ideal results.
Q: I currently have bridgework on several teeth. Will Invisalign still work?
A: Because bridgework involves the connection of a tooth to surrounding teeth, it would be difficult for the aligners to work effectively for that specific area. The aligners are designed to move each tooth separately, following the exact movements that Dr. Paliani will map out for you when creating your custom-made aligners. We have completed cases where we have modified the bridges prior to treatment, moved the teeth, then resecured the teeth by way of a new bridge.
What Are Invisalign Costs and Payment Options?
Q: How much does Invisalign Cost?
A: We know cost is a big question for anyone considering orthodontic work. In most cases, Invisalign treatment is comparable to the cost of traditional braces. However, as with other medical/dental treatments, only Dr. Paliani can determine the cost, based on your specific needs and desires. Other factors may include your treatment goals, the difficulty of your case, how long you are in treatment and additional factors determined by Dr. Paliani.
Q: Will my dental insurance cover Invisalign?
A: Because dental benefits differ significantly from policy to policy, you should review your personal coverage plan. However, in general, if a patient has orthodontic coverage, Invisalign should be covered to the same extent as conventional braces. A quick call to your insurance company can usually obtain the answer about coverage. If there is no coverage for orthodontics, please contact Dr. Paliani as we have options to make treatment affordable to everyone.
Q: What payment options are available for Invisalign?
A: Dr. Paliani will help you find options to make your treatment affordable. Dr. Paliani's office offers flexible and affordable monthly payment plans. This financing is through DentoPLAN. Specifically designed for dental expenses, the use of third-party patient financing programs can make it easier for you to get the treatment or procedures you want and need. Visit DentoPLAN.ca for more information.