Clear aligners are a set of see through plastic mouth guards which are specially made in a laboratory by orthodontists. They are orthodontic braces, and serve the same function: to correct your bite and line up your teeth so that they are even, easy to clean, and pleasant to look at. These “new” kinds of braces are especially popular in adult orthodontics, as adults frequently cannot be seen with traditional metal braces, as it would hurt their social standing. Clear aligners are a removable, plastic, transparent solution to this problem, as they can be worn by anyone to fix most orthodontic problems.
Imagine a mouth guard that is entirely transparent, and goes exactly over your teeth. That is what an Invisalign® clear aligner looks like. These aligners are transparent and are nearly invisible when worn. They are very light, and are made of medical grade plastic. They usually come with a box hat you can put them in.
How does Invisalign® work?
Invisalign® makes use of gentle forces, and helps to align teeth using these weaker occlusal forces, pushing the teeth into position gently. You put them on and they must be worn for 22 hours a day, so you can only take them out at meal times and maybe for one or two special occasions. But the more you wear them, the quicker they will align your teeth. The dentist will take an impression of your teeth, and will send that impression to Invisalign® headquarters, where they will make a series of clear aligners, each one a little bit different and closer to the final outcome you wish to achieve. At every activation session, you will be given a new aligner, and each one will bring you closer to that final, well aligned smile.
Prices and important info
Clear aligners are significantly more expensive than fixed traditional braces, as they are made of a special material that is secret, can only be made in one place, and requires the help of the Invisalign® headquarters. This combination of special materials and knowledge drives prices up, for obvious reasons. It is also important to note that not all malocclusions can be fixed with clear aligners, and most severe malocclusions require fixed braces. Consult your orthodontist if aligners are an option for you.