Invisalign The Clear Alternative to Braces


Invisalign straightens teeth using a series of nearly invisible, removable aligners that are custom-made specifically for your teeth – hence the name.

What happens is that each aligner is replaced every two weeks, with the result that your teeth will  gradually, over a period time, be eased into a position that completely transforms your appearance – and that winning smile.

The benefits of Invisalign

One of the main benefits is that, because Invisalign aligners are almost invisible, it is likely that no-one will even notice that you are wearing them.

Secondly, you can easily remove them so that you can eat and drink whatever you want, and brush and floss your teeth as normal, which means that you are able to maintain a good oral hygiene while the treatment is taking pace. You should also clean your aligners at the same time by brushing and rinsing them in lukewarm water and using Invisalign cleaning crystals or special cleaning tablets.

Thirdly, there are no wires or metal brackets, as with traditional braces, which means that you spend less time having to have the aligners adjusted.

The aligners are, in fact, made of strong medical grade thermoplastic material, and are custom-made to fit snugly over your teeth.

How long does the treatment take – and is it painful?

There can be variations in the duration of the treatment depending on the circumstances, but generally you would be looking at between nine and 18 months, which is roughly the same sort of time span as with traditional braces.

You would usually pay a visit to your dentist every four to six weeks to check that everything was progressing satisfactorily and to receive the next few sets of Invisalign aligners.

As for any pain, it is true that some patients may experience some minor discomfort for a few days at the beginning of each new stage of treatment, but this quickly passes, usually within a couple of days.

Do all dentists provide this treatment?

All dentists and orthodontists interested in treating patients with Invisalign are required to undergo specialised training in order for them to gain qualification, and not all practitioners have gone through the process, so, if you were considering this method of teeth straightening you would have to check on the accredited list of qualified personnel.

What is the first step towards having treatment?

Most practitioners offer a free initial consultation, in which all your requirements, fears and problems will be discussed to assess your suitability for Invisalign treatment.

If, at the end of it, you decide to go ahead, then bite impressions and photographs of your teeth will be taken and these will be sent away, along with precise instructions, for your custom-built invisible aligners to be made.

What happens when the course of treatment is completed?

You would have to wear a retainer, as is the case with all orthodontic treatment, in order to keep your teeth firmly placed in their new positions.

In most cases the last aligner fitted will act as a temporary retainer and your Invisalign provider will advise on any longer term that might be necessary or advisable.

Is Invisalign available for teenagers?

There is a problem with teenagers in that their teeth may be at different stages of development, but Invisalign have thought about that and subsequently come up with several treatment options.

Some teenagers will actually be suitable for the same Invisalign treatment as adult patients, while younger teenagers on the other hand, or those whose adult teeth have not yet erupted, can be treated with Invisalign Teen – a treatment designed specifically for that age group.

How much does Invisalign cost?

As with all types of orthodontic treatment, the cost of Invisalign depends on your personal circumstances and any difficulties that might be involved.

However, it is generally comparable to the cost of traditional fixed braces, so you can reckon on anything between £1,500 – if only minor remedial work is required – up to £4,500 if the treatment is much more extensive.