Invisalign. These clear aligners have become a household name. They’ve done for orthodontic appliances what Xerox did for copy machines. Just before the turn of the millennium, Invisalign became publicly available for purchase. Orthodontists were initially hesitant to use Invisalign. But over the last two decades, that hesitation has diminished. According to manufacturer Align Technology, Invisalign has helped over 13 million smiles worldwide. Like any newer technology, not everything said about Invisalign is entirely accurate. How does one tell the difference between fact and fiction when dealing with Invisalign?
Dr. Moon is committed to giving patients the treatment methods that work best for them. For that reason, both our Overland Park and Olathe locations use Invisalign. As we see new patients, we encounter numerous questions and misunderstandings about Invisalign. As you consider your treatment options, take some time to learn more about Invisalign.
Myth #1: Invisalign Is the Same as Traditional Braces.
Invisalign is indeed an orthodontic appliance. Its purpose is to straighten teeth over a period of time. Like traditional braces, a patient may have to wear Invisalign for an extended period. In those ways, Invisalign is similar to conventional braces. But to call them the same would be inaccurate. Braces, whether metal or clear, have brackets and wires.
Additionally, Dr. Moon will likely recommend braces to fix a bad bite. You may hear him use the term “malocclusion.” Braces can work better (and, in many cases, more quickly) on bad bites. That said, patients may eventually transition from braces to Invisalign to help them further hone their smile. Nevertheless, Invisalign and braces are distinctly different for that reason.
If Invisalign Isn’t Braces, Then What Is it?
We’ve established that Invisalign is not the same as braces. So then, what is it? Invisalign works more like a retainer than braces. When you wear braces, you can’t take them off to eat or brush your teeth. But since Invisalign is a removable retainer, you have the bonus of taking it out when you have a meal or get ready to brush and floss.
Dr. Moon designs sets of Invisalign customized acrylic aligners for each specific set of teeth. Each Invisalign aligner is composed of smooth, sleek, and virtually unseeable plastic. At Moon Orthodontics, we use a digital scanner to analyze your bite, leading to a tailored aligner. We do all this without requiring yucky trays and impressions. Dr. Moon then generates a unique plan for your teeth. Next, you’ll receive your complete set of aligners about two weeks later. The entire Invisalign treatment process takes roughly 6 to 15 months for most patients.
Myth #2: Invisalign Is Permanent and Has to Be Removed By an Orthodontist.
This misunderstanding is similar to myth #1. Braces are affixed to the teeth with glue. The wires and brackets help pull the teeth into position over a while. If Dr. Moon did fit you with Braces, he might give you a list of food and beverages to abstain from. You might have to temporarily say goodbye to some of your favorite snacks and beverages. But with Invisalign, that’s not the case. Invisalign is definitely not permanent, and Dr. Moon does not attach it to you.
So, is Invisalign 100% Removable?
Yes, absolutely. Using only your fingers, you can apply and take out your Invisalign aligners whenever you please. This means that you get first dibs on straightening your smile. You might sometimes see results as early as three months after initiating treatment! Another advantage of unfastening Invisalign is the ability to eat (and drink) whatever you want!
Craving chicken wings, a big meaty burger, or some crunchy popcorn? Have at it! If you have an oral report or presentation for work or school, you can do away with your aligner for that too. Dr. Moon recommends that you wear your Invisalign for 22 hours each day.
You can remove the aligners temporarily for that, too. However, for Invisalign to be most effective, they do need to be worn for approximately 22 hours a day. You won’t get that kind of freedom with conventional braces.
Myth #3: Invisalign Is Too Expensive For Me.
Moon Orthodontics understands budget constraints. In any circumstance, patients come first. Dr. Moon will only offer treatment plans a patient will actually benefit from. We don’t believe in surprise charges or hidden fees.
With that in mind, sometimes people are intimidated by anything described as “state-of-the-art.” To many folks, that’s just another word for “expensive.” In reality, the price for Invisalign isn’t that different from traditional braces.
Will My Insurance Take Care of Invisalign?
Suppose your insurance provider covers dental and orthodontic interventions. In that case, you can use it to help with either Invisalign or regular braces. The teams at Moon Orthodontics offices in Overland Park and Olathe work with all Kansas insurance companies. We’ll check and double-check any benefits you’re entitled to. Furthermore, we’re happy to talk with you about a payment plan that fits your budget.
Align with Us for Your Invisalignment Needs
Now that we’ve assessed a few myths about Invisalign, where do we go from here? You may still have questions. If so, you’re in good company. Dr. Moon’s team is here to answer all of them. Go here to schedule your free consultation. Feeling unsure about coming into the office? Not a problem. Visit us here for a virtual consultation.