There are many great options for achieving a red-carpet smile these days. Orthodontics have come a long way since they were introduced to patients more than 2,000 years ago. For years in America, orthodontic patients only had the option of wearing metal braces for two to four years in order to correct their smile. While this was often seen as a “rite of passage” for adolescents and teens, it was rarely appreciated by adults who were not able to undergo orthodontic treatment at a young age. Traditional metal braces are still not an ideal option for many because of professional reasons, athletic involvement, or convenience. That is what makes Invisalign® clear aligners such a great option for those who want to achieve a red-carpet smile but who do not want to use traditional metal brackets and wire braces.
Invisalign® is a specific orthodontic treatment that uses a series of aligners to move the teeth into their desired positions. These aligners provide a more comfortable and convenient method of orthodontics because they are removable while eating and cleaning the teeth, and they do not require the discomfort of tightening metal wires inside the mouth. To ensure that you are getting the most out of your Invisalign® treatment, the following tips will help you straighten your teeth as quickly and successfully as possible.
- Floss your teeth every single day. While brushing your teeth may be a habit that you rarely have to think about doing, flossing is often an overlooked dental habit. Floss helps to remove bacteria-laden plaque from the gum line and between the teeth. Because Invisalign® aligners fit snuggly against your teeth, any grime that is stuck between the teeth and/or at the gum line will be trapped. Flossing your teeth every single day will help to keep your teeth and gums clean and healthy.
- Wear your aligners at least 22 hours every day. In order for your Invisalign® aligners to do their job efficiently and successfully, they must be worn at least 22 hours a day. This means that unless your aligners are removed because you are eating or cleaning your teeth and aligners, they should be in your mouth. The aligners cannot and will not work if they are not inside your mouth!
- Stick to your prescribed schedule. Every patient is given a schedule to follow for wearing their Invisalign® aligners. Because the aligners work in a series, gradually changing each time you put new aligners inside your mouth, it is important to stick to the schedule. Most patients switch out their aligners for new ones every two weeks. Some patients have a different schedule due to specific concerns. It is important that you adhere to the schedule in order to see your desired results. If your dentist tells you to wear your new set of aligners an extra week, there is good reason and you should do it. If you are supposed to change aligners every two weeks, then set a reminder to remind you to change your aligners. You will not achieve the red-carpet results that you desire if you do not stick to the prescribed schedule for changing your smile. It is also important to note that you will not make your treatment go faster by skipping ahead to new aligners before you are supposed to. In fact, this can actually make your treatment slow down because missing a step can mess up your progress.
- Do not give up on your aligners. At first, your aligners will feel strange and foreign inside your mouth. This is normal. You may speak with a lisp for a few days, your mouth may be a little sore, or your aligners may just aggravate you – but do not give up! The more you wear your aligners, they more natural they will feel inside your mouth.
- Clean your aligners daily. It is not advised to brush your aligners with toothpaste as this can scratch the plastic, but it is important to clean them each day. Putting dirty aligners into your mouth will only cause your teeth to be dirty and your gums to become infected. The best way to clean Invisalign® aligners is with warm water and antibacterial soap.
- Commit to wearing your retainer. Once your Invisalign® treatment is complete and you have achieved the red-carpet smile you dreamed about, it is up to you to maintain it. Most patients will receive a retainer to wear for a few months. This retainer is what holds your teeth in their new position. Do not ruin your brand-new smile by choosing not to wear your retainer.
At Pure Dental Health, we are proud to offer Invisalign® orthodontic treatment to patients who wish to improve the appearance of their smiles. Please contact our practice to schedule a consultation appointment to learn whether you are a good candidate for Invisalign® or whether another option is more suited for your needs. We look forward to helping you achieve that red-carpet smile you have been dreaming of!
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