Invisalign is an innovative technique for orthodontic treatment in which removable, clear plastic aligners (sequential, custom-made trays that fit over and move the teeth) are used to align the teeth and place them in proper position.
If you are familiar with Invisalign and how it works, you should know that we are one of the few certified Invisalign Preferred Provider orthodontists in the Laguna Niguel, CA area. Dr. Majd has a reputation for her expertise in treating difficult cases with Invisalign. She has treated cases and delivered beautiful results when all other orthodontists consulted by the patient had suggested the case would not be possible to treat with Invisalign (see M. G.'s before and after photos at the bottom of this page and her Yelp review on our Yelp page)!
Most other dentists that we work with bring their challenging cases to discuss with Dr. Majd and seek her help and advice when they have difficulty treating a case.
If you are not familiar with Invisalign, here are some important facts about Invisalign's clear aligner therapy:
- There are other versions of clear aligner therapy for orthodontic treatment including ClearCorrect™, Orchestrate, MTM™, Simpli5™, and a range of other products and technologies that are based on the same principle, but Invisalign (patented by Align) is the first, most well-known with the longest track record of this category of technologies.
- The idea seems very simple but there is a complicated process that makes the treatment successful. The American Association of Orthodontists strongly warns consumers about the dangers of “Do-It-Yourself” aligners that are marketed to the public. Attempting to use these products to move the teeth without proper information and expertise can cause significant damages to the teeth and gums and even lead to loss of teeth or TMJ problems.
- The patented technology is expensive. Invisalign usually costs about $2000 more than traditional braces due to the technology and manufacturing fees.
- Invisalign is limited in the extent and precision with which it can move the teeth. Not all cases are treatable with Invisalign. Dr. Majd can tell you if your case can be treated with Invisalign alone or a combination technique using braces or other supplemental appliances along with Invisalign.
- Treating most cases with Invisalign requires multiple series of aligners (refinements) or adjustments made in the course of aligners (mid-course corrections). Since the initial aligners are made based on average rates of tooth movement, most of the time the movements don’t exactly happen at that rate and aligners may not fit as well which is called “teeth not tracking.” At that time, modifications in the aligners or making supplemental aligners is required to complete the treatment with ideal results.
- Sometimes despite all of the steps named above, placing braces (on some or all the teeth) will be required to accomplish all the fine and precise movements for a perfect outcome.
- Most patients (specially adults) like the aesthetics and convenience that removable clear aligners offer, it is great that aligners can be removed for eating, flossing, and brushing, as well as social occasions.
- With all the convenience and comfort Invisalign offers, there are instances when patients prefer braces since they don't have to worry about removing and replacing aligners and the teeth movements happen faster with braces that are attached to the teeth all the time.
Why choose an orthodontist for Invisalign?
Proper case selection and treatment plan is very important. The design, fabrication, and utilization protocol and monitoring of aligners should be properly done by a certified and experienced orthodontist who understands and has experience in proper tooth movement and orthodontic principles.
Orthodontists are the specialists qualified to treat patients with Invisalign. Even though general dentists offer Invisalign as one of their services along with cleanings, fillings, bonding, etc., your best choice is an orthodontist who is a certified provider for Invisalign.
General dentists don't have the level of knowledge, training, and experience to provide the information you need and most of the time will offer you Invisalign since that is the only type of orthodontic treatment they provide.
When you choose an orthodontist, you will be informed which treatment is best for you and your options are weighed so you can make an informed decision.
The aligners should be worn following the instructions provided for a period of one or two weeks per aligner, and the progress should be monitored regularly by Dr. Majd.
Invisalign aligners are removable and need to be removed when eating, brushing, and drinking anything but water. Aligners can't move the teeth if not worn at least 20 hours per day.
The tooth movements designed in Invisalign clear aligners are based on the estimates and predictions of teeth moving in response to applied forces. The teeth may not follow those estimates and predictions specially if aligners are not worn as prescribed. This affects how the aligners fit and work. It is very important that the progress of treatment, movements, and health of the teeth as well as fit of the aligners be regularly monitored.
In most cases, there will be attachments (buttons temporarily bonded to the teeth in strategic locations) that are placed to facilitate the required tooth movements. These attachments are tooth-colored and made out of composites (the same bonding materials that are used for fillings on the front teeth).
Invisalign attachments make a big difference in how aligners work and must be designed with a very specific formula to help with applying forces to the teeth and moving them. There is a transition period of few hours to a few days for the patients to get used to having the attachments on the teeth especially when aligners are out. Sometimes, wearing aligners makes it easier since the attachments are covered. Occasionally, an attachment may feel sharp or rough, therefore causing discomfort. Dr. Majd can polish and smooth out those areas for you. Generally, patients do not have any problems with attachments after they get used to them.
If you are not happy with your smile or your teeth are not aligned well, call our Laguna Niguel office for a complimentary initial consultation to learn about your options and how orthodontic treatment with Invisalign can help you achieve your desired smile.
Before and After with Invisalign
M.G. is a 20-year-old young girl who had crowding of her teeth in the upper left side. Two of her teeth had switched places and she was not happy with her smile but did not want to wear braces. She had consulted multiple orthodontists and her own general dentist (who does offer Invisalign). They all told her she was not a candidate for Invisalign. Her dentist made her a removable plate (flipper) to wear over the area where her tooth was placed inward and there looked like a space between her teeth.
During her consultation visit, Dr. Majd performed a thorough examination and reviewed her treatment options. She explained that her treatment could be done with Invisalign but it would require her full cooperation and take roughly two years. The final photos were taken at the end of her treatment with Invisalign. As you can see, perfect results were delivered using clear aligners alone (no braces) along with some elastics (rubber bands) worn at night.
Facial photo before and after treatment:
Upper teeth before and treatment:
For more information on Invisalign, you can visit the Invisalign website.