At our clinic, we offer Invisalign Weybridge as an alternative to braces for mild to moderate misalignments and cosmetic cases. They have been well accepted and are more comfortable, convenient and often cheaper than standard braces. But how do they work?
A course of treatment with clear aligners involves wearing a set of aligners, each one for about two weeks to reposition the teeth, moving them towards a straighter, better meshing profile.
What is the treatment pathway?
Before you can make an informed decision on whether aligners are suitable, you need to be assessed by our orthodontist and have a conversation about your expectations. Aligners are useful, but have yet to be effective for severe cases, and cannot be used to re-position molars. So, sometimes a metal brace is a better option.
If clear aligners are going to be helpful and you decide to continue on to treatment with Invisalign Weybridge , the first step is to take a 3D scan of your teeth. This can be done directly with a scanner, which is placed inside your mouth or we can send a dental mould to the manufacturer who will scan it in a studio.
This starting scan is used as the baseline in developing a treatment schedule. An orthodontist will use ClinCheck, a software program developed by the brand to re-organise the teeth in the computer model. This re-imagined arrangement will be the end state of your treatment. The program will then predict all the in between movements necessary to get from the starting scan to the idealised endpoint. This involves calculating the forces required to move the teeth and the direction of those forces at each time step; this is known as a force vector map.
The next step is creating a clear plastic aligner which can generate the forces which are required; the set of computer-generated aligners needed to be created in the real world for them to be of any use to you! And with such individualised forms, the only viable manufacturing technique is to 3D print them in UV light-cured resin; not too different from the resins used in bondings and crowns.
Wearing the aligners
You must be committed to wearing your aligner as much as possible, day and night to have the desired effect. You don’t need to remove them while eating, but they should be out of your mouth for no longer than 2 hours per day. Longer gaps will delay treatment and lead to you getting stuck, having to use the same aligner for longer than 2 weeks or regressing and having to go back to a previous aligner.
The everyday routine of using Invisalign Weybridge quickly becomes second nature. The translucency and streamlined designs make them unobtrusive to use and it is highly unlikely for anyone to notice them.
Do clear aligners hurt?
The plastic form of the aligner does constantly push on your teeth, which can be uncomfortable, but patients who have used both aligners and metal braces report that they are much more tolerable than having a brace tightened.
What about home kit aligners?
At-home kits or any aligner not used under the supervision of a medical professional have been counter-indicated by the BOS (British Orthodontic Society) and so, we cannot condone their use.