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braces vs clear aligners

How Do Clear Aligners Work?

Clear aligners have become a game-changer in the field of orthodontics. Offering a modern, virtually invisible alternative to traditional metal braces, clear aligners like Invisalign and OrthoFX are proving to be a popular choice among adults and teenagers alike. At Williams Orthodontics in Evergreen and Confier, CO, we often get asked – “How do these clear aligners work?” This article aims to provide a comprehensive understanding of the functionality behind this advanced dental technology.

Understanding Clear Aligners

Before we delve into the details of how clear aligners work, it’s important to comprehend what they are. Clear aligners are custom-made, smooth, comfortable, BPA-free clear plastic trays that are worn over the teeth. Here are some key attributes:

  • They are almost invisible, allowing you to wear them without a noticeable difference in your appearance.
  • Clear aligners are removable, unlike traditional braces. This means you can take them out to eat, drink, brush and floss.
  • Since they’re custom-made, they snugly fit over your teeth, offering personalized, precise teeth-straightening.

The Science Behind Clear Aligners

Now let’s get to the essence of this article – understanding how clear aligners work.

Digital Mappings and Impressions

Initially, your orthodontist will take detailed impressions of your teeth with the help of a 3D scanner. This scanner produces highly accurate, digital models of your teeth, which then serve as the foundation for your treatment plan.

Customized Treatment Plan

Your orthodontist or oral surgeon will work closely with the aligner company’s lab to develop your personalized treatment plan. They’ll discuss your oral health goals, study the dynamics of your mouth, jaw, and teeth, and use this information to plan the multiple stages of position change for your teeth.

Crafting the Clear Aligners

Using the comprehensive treatment plan, a series of aligners are custom crafted for you. Each clear aligner set is designed to make small, gradual changes to the positioning of your teeth. This set contains separate aligners for your upper and lower teeth. The number of aligners will be based on each individual’s case, and the severity of adjustments needed.

Wearing the Aligners

You’re expected to wear the clear aligners for about 20-22 hours a day, removing them only for eating, drinking, and taking care of oral hygiene. Approximately every 1-2 weeks, you will switch to the next set of aligners.

Regular Check-ups

Regular check-ups are crucial during your clear aligner treatment, to monitor progress and make any necessary adjustments. These appointments usually take place every six to eight weeks.

The Result

The teeth gradually shift in position over time with each set of aligners, ultimately aligning to the final position as per your orthodontist’s treatment plan. The treatment duration may vary, influenced by factors such as complexity of the case, compliance with wearing aligners, and individual teeth movement response.

Concluding Thoughts

It’s noteworthy that like all orthodontic treatments, clear aligners also require post-treatment retention. After treatment, you’d be asked to use clear retainers to maintain the new position of your teeth.

At Williams Orthodontics, we’ve seen the profound impact clear aligners like Invisalign and OrthoFX have had on our patients’ lives. Not only do they straighten teeth effectively, their nearly invisible nature promotes a sense of confidence and comfort that traditional braces cannot.

As expert oral surgeons, we strive to ensure optimal oral health for our Colorado communities. So, if you have more queries on clear aligners or are considering getting them, feel free to reach out to us.Read reviews and get directions at our Williams Orthodontics Google Business Profile. Then book an appointment today.

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