For many people attending a dental surgery at any time has become more than just a slight inconvenience. When it comes to straightening your teeth, there are alternatives like Invisalign in Glasgow allowing you to get access to orthodontic treatment with minimal travel.
Orthodontics have long been associated with inconvenient long-term dental care. It’s partially due to the number of visits typically required to have braces fitted and then adjusted throughout treatment, as well as the aesthetic impact of wearing a traditional metal brace.
And although there is a counter-culture chic that is now applied to braces, for the majority of those requiring orthodontic treatment they would prefer to avoid them if they can.
This is where clear aligners or even invisible aligners have stepped up to the plate. Using the similar physiological mechanism by applying pressure precisely and consistently to teeth, it allows their positions to be altered. This enables slanted teeth and poorly meeting bites to be corrected given enough time and enough precision pressure.
Clear aligners are transparent plastic forms that fit over the teeth and are not directly anchored, unlike a metal brace which uses a set of brackets, one side of which is permanently adhered to the front surface of the tooth, the other side of which is connected to the archwire. Aligners are also custom fitted, so there will be no need to worry about them moving about in your daily life.
Typically, the archwire on a metal brace holds the wire under tension, which is transferred to the teeth, encouraging them to move. A clear aligner also holds tension, but in the plastic form itself which has to be snug, so that it is slightly deformed when it is placed over your teeth. This elastic tension is then used to move your teeth into their new straighter positions. This greatly simplifies the design of a clear aligner over a traditional brace. It also allows them to be thinner and lighter; when this is paired with their translucency, it can be easy to forget you’re wearing them, and it is unlikely that they will be noticed by others.
All forms of brace and aligner come with some teething issues, and with their sleek design and ease of use, clear aligners have a relatively short useful life span. There is a very specific range during which the elasticity of the material can provide enough force to effectively move teeth, but this is usually around 2 weeks, and is part of a long series with many other aligners. This is why it is important that you keep the aligners in for the required time each day, so they do not become fatigued and thus less effective.
Fatigue of the plastic may lead to the aligners then needing to be replaced, which can be costly and time-consuming.
Remember, all adjustments are pre-designed into any set of aligners; all the aligners you have should already contain all of the adjustments required, assuming treatment is not disrupted.
While most clinics will endeavour to book regular check-ups during orthodontic treatment just to monitor progress, they can be omitted and during this exceptional time, there may be other options available in lieu of traditional check-ups. Many invisible aligners come with apps for smartphones, which can be used to stay in touch with your dentist.