When a patient suffers from misalignment problems, they are often concerned about the aesthetic effects this has on the smile. However, in many cases, there are health problems associated with malocclusion problems (crooked, poorly spaced, and misaligned teeth) that are far more serious than the cosmetic issues. Teeth that are not aligned properly can put excessive pressure on the teeth and can also be difficult to clean properly, increasing the risk of damage, tooth decay, and gum disease. At our cosmetic dentistry practice, offering comprehensive dental care to our patients, orthodontic treatment is available to shift teeth into proper alignment. While traditional braces are available, many of our patients prefer the discreet treatment provided by Invisalign®. Dr. Leah Stempfle is happy to explain to our Edmonton patients what they can expect during the Invisalign® treatment timeline.
Most patients who are good candidates for traditional orthodontic treatment with braces are also ideal candidates for Invisalign®, an orthodontic treatment that uses virtually invisible aligner trays to gradually straighten the teeth. However, the first step of treatment will always be a consultation in which the teeth are thoroughly examined and the aspects of treatment are carefully explained to the patient. If it is determined that Invisalign® treatment is ideal, the consultation will proceed and the specific treatment plan can be determined. Using several computer images and molds of the teeth and mouth, Dr. Stempfle will create a treatment plan that meets the specific needs of each patient. The molds and computer images will then be sent to a lab where a series of custom aligners will be fabricated using clear, BPA-free plastic.
When the aligners have been completed, the patient will return to our office and treatment will begin. Dr. Stemple will provide the patient with his or her series of aligners and give explicit instructions on how and when the aligners should be worn. As long as the aligners are worn for 20 to 22 hours a day, they can effectively realign the teeth. This gives patients the freedom of removing aligners for eating, brushing, and flossing, and even for those rare, special occasions.
Approximately every two weeks throughout the Invisalign® treatment process, patients will advance to the next set of aligners. Each set of aligners varies slightly from the one that preceded it. These gradual changes are what provide the pressure that shifts the teeth into proper alignment. Periodically throughout the treatment process, Dr. Stempfle will examine the teeth to ensure that treatment is going as planned.
Each Invisalign® treatment will vary in length based on the type of malocclusion being corrected, as well as the extent of the problem. However, most patients complete treatment within 12 to 24 months, a timeline that is very similar to traditional braces. The results of Invisalign® are comparable to braces as well. Following Invisalign® treatment, patients will have a smile that is noticeably straighter and easier to maintain and keep healthy.
Every patient deserves a smile that makes him or her proud to share with the world. If you suffer from misalignment and would like to learn more about how Invisalign® can give you a healthier, more attractive smile, schedule an appointment with Dr. Leah Stemple at your earliest convenience. We look forward to hearing from you!