Straight teeth are more or less a common desire, but braces are not. The alternate option, Invisalign, with clear corrective dental trays is gaining more and more popularity. But, before you get your hands on these transparent and convenient teeth straighteners, here is some advice you should keep in mind.
Consulting an Orthodontist
Nowadays, orthodontia is becoming more available through direct-to-consumer telemedicine. Frankly, it’s way more affordable. You can get a $2000 expert service from Smile Direct Club and other best-in-class DTC dental companies, instead of spending $6000 on your Invisalign. So, here’s an option for you before jumping on in-office treatment and buying branded aligners. But wait, there’s a twist!
Weighing the Risks
Telemedicine doesn’t come without its own risks. Professionals like Dr. Keri Barrow, based in Horner Barrow Orthodontics in Sioux Falls, and many others strongly advise against DTC straighteners. Even the American Association of Orthodontists supports this line of view. According to Dr. Barrow, the health and function of our teeth are just as important as their appearance. So, face-to-face consultation and pre-treatment examination by any trained orthodontist is essential to evaluate tooth movement. Periodic check-ups are also necessary during your Invisalign treatment. Otherwise, the biting pattern can change, resulting in functional problems. She also argues that DTC aligners can sometimes amplify existing dental problems like cavity and tooth decay.
Keeping Them Clean
Once you start your Invisalign treatment, get ready to brush a lot! Take out the aligner trays each time you’re eating or drinking. And Dr. Barrow and other experts strongly recommend brushing your teeth and cleaning your trays every time after eating or drinking. Because there’s a significant risk of decay and decalcification from not rinsing the trays or brushing the teeth after eating or drinking. Also, the aligners can get dirty quicker than you think. So, you might want to brush the series of hardware themselves from time to time. Investing in an ultrasonic cleaning machine or using prescribed decalcifying tablets are other methods to keep your Invisalign clean.
Storing Them Properly
No matter which brand you choose, your Invisalign aligners are not that durable and have short life spans. It’s not like they are going to split in half that easily though. Teeth straighteners are durable enough to use for 14 days on end, up to 22 hours a day. However, they are not generally made to withstand high heat and can even melt under the hot sun! So, you’ll need to always store your Invisalign trays safely at room temperature.