After creating a 3D model of your teeth from digital scans, we can digitally plan your entire orthodontic treatment from start to finish. Clear aligners are fabricated from impressions taken of your teeth and are fully transparent and removable.
This makes orthodontic treatment much more aesthetic, convenient, and flexible compared to traditional braces. Read on in this blog from Montgomery Family Dental to find out if you would be a good candidate for clear aligners.
Clear aligners can effectively correct a range of minor to moderate orthodontic problems such as crooked or misaligned teeth, small gaps, overcrowding, and bite problems. When you have teeth that need a little help moving in a certain direction or have a misaligned bite, clear aligners are paired with attachments and elastics.
Attachments are buttons made of composite resin that come in different shapes and are bonded to your teeth to help place extra pressure on certain teeth to achieve more complex too movements or to shift the jaw.
This has enabled clear aligners to correct more severe malocclusions that they were previously unable to address. However, clear aligners still face limitations. If you need teeth rotated, have large gaps between the teeth, a severely misaligned bite, or teeth that need to be lowered or raised into the gums, clear aligners are not as effective as traditional braces.
While clear aligners are suitable for many people, not everyone is a candidate for clear aligners. The biggest disqualifier is having signs of oral health problems.
Tooth decay and gum disease need to be treated before you can undergo orthodontic treatment. Another issue is a willingness to comply with treatment. Clear aligners are often recommended to adults because they are more self-accountable when it comes to following directions.
Patients need to wear their aligners for a minimum of 22 hours per day, clean the aligners twice a day, and remember to remove them before eating or drinking flavored beverages. This is often too much for younger patients to keep up with on their own.
Clear aligners are also not suitable for patients with severe orthodontic problems, because clear aligners are best suited for minor cosmetic issues like slightly crooked teeth or small gaps between the teeth. Aligners cannot rotate teeth past 20 degrees and cannot perform intrusion or extrusion (moving the tooth higher or lower into the gums).
Invisalign - These aligners need to be changed every 2 weeks to continue gradually shifting the teeth. Regular check-ups are scheduled around every 6 weeks to check on your progress. Invisalign offers a range of plans ranging from unlimited and express (6 months) to a set of 7 aligners, a set of 14, or the full plan which is enough aligners for 12 to 18 months.
This is the most reputable and famous brand that has been around the longest. It has the highest price tag but depending on the plan you choose, the prices can be comparable to the more “affordable” clear aligners.
ClearCorrect - Clearcorrect is split into four different phases and the timing between these phases is subject to personal differences in orthodontic alignment and the complexity of your case. You will change your aligners every 3 weeks.
ClearCorrect offers 3 different aligner plans so you can choose between unlimited aligners, a set of 12, or a set of 6. These aligners are more affordable than Invisalign. While the aligners are thinner and less durable than Invisalign, this also makes them even less noticeable.
SureSmile - Suresmile is a brand of clear aligners that comes in a customizable trim that patients can choose between scalloped or straight. They are also more suitable for treating complex class 1 and class 2 cases like larger gaps and bite problems.
The aligners contain cutouts to accommodate buttons and elastics. They offer the unique function of filling in gaps where there are missing teeth by creating a virtual pontic tooth within the aligners. We can color-match the artificial pontic to your natural teeth creating the illusion of another tooth when there isn’t one.
They only offer two plans which are unlimited and select. The unlimited plan is a set price for as many aligners as you need, whereas the select plan requires you to pay a set price per aligner. This is the cheapest aligner brand when you opt for the unlimited plan.
If you’re wondering if clear aligners are right for you, the best way to find out is to come in for a one-on-one consultation with Dr. Katie Montgomery. She will examine your teeth and take x-rays to ensure you’re in good oral health, have sufficient gum and bone support, and that your orthodontic problems are minor enough to be corrected with clear aligners. Contact us at Montgomery Family Dental today to schedule an appointment.