Is Invisalign® Right For Me?

Grand Rapids Invisalign Orthodontist

Are you someone that’s concerned with the look or feel of traditional brackets and wires on your teeth? Fortunately, our Grand Rapids orthodontists can introduce you to a different option for moving your teeth: Invisalign® clear aligners

Here are the basics you need to know before you pursue Invisalign treatment

Invisalign Explained

Invisalign is a brand that consists of custom-made clear aligners that straighten your teeth without metal braces. They are designed from impressions of your teeth. Our doctors, utilizing 3D modeling, will develop a plan to determine the needed movements to straighten your teeth. Custom aligners are then fabricated by Invisalign technicians and delivered to you as a complete series. 

Key benefits of Invisalign include:

  • The clear aligners offer a subtle look and are nearly invisible to family, friends, and co-workers.
  • You can remove your aligners to eat, drink (liquids other than water), brush, and floss.
  • Your diet is unrestricted; no need to avoid sticky or chewy foods.
  • Easier to practice oral hygiene thanks to their removable nature.


Length of Invisalign Treatment

The average treatment process for Invisalign takes around 12-18 months. Every patient is different so what might take less than 12 months for one individual, could take 6-7 for another. Ultimately, treatment time varies based on the complexity of needed tooth movements. 

The top and bottom aligners are worn at least 20-22 hours a day and replaced with a new set every 2 weeks to ensure the gradual movement of your teeth. You’re welcome to remove the aligners for brushing, flossing, drinking (other than water), and eating. After you’re finished, however, they should be cleaned and put back in place.

Not every person qualifies for clear aligner therapy. Certain limitations exist depending on your specific dental needs. Also, compliance with the appliances is very important. If certain teeth do not move as expected, refinements may be ordered by our doctors during the treatment process and new trays will be delivered based on the needed movements.

Next Step After Treatment 

To maintain the ideal alignment of your teeth and prevent any unwanted shifting, our orthodontists will give you a custom retainer to use. This is the retention phase of your treatment and while it may seem bothersome, it’s a necessary part of keeping the smile you and our orthodontists have worked hard to create.

In the beginning, you will be instructed to wear the retainer more often but as time goes on, that will change. For example, our orthodontists may tell you to only wear your retainer at night or a few times a week. You will want to keep up with retainer use though to avoid your smile regressing and undoing the results of your treatment.

Ask About Invisalign Today

As always, please don’t hesitate to ask our orthodontists in Grand Rapids, MI, with any questions about Invisalign®. We would be more than happy to walk you through the process of scanning your teeth and the rules around wearing your personalized clear aligners. Call Armbrecht & Wierenga Orthodontics at (616) 455-4800 or contact us online to get started today.

This blog post has been updated.