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When teeth are misaligned, crowded, crooked and/or don’t fit together correctly, orthodontics (braces) can be used to correct these problems. Invisalign or Suresmile is an esthetic option to treat certain malocclusion cases. Instead of the traditional metal brackets and wires, a series of clear aligners/trays are used to move the teeth.

If you are interested in correcting your teeth alignment and we think you are a good candidate for Invisalign or Suresmile, we will take a digital 3D scan of your teeth and send it to the Invisalign/Suresmile laboratory along with photos of your face and teeth. We work with Invisalign/Suresmile to come up with an ideal treatment plan and then the clear aligner trays are made. The number of trays for a case is dependent on the amount of tooth movement needed.

When we receive the aligners back, the first appointment may involve bonding small composite attachments on some of the teeth to help with rotations and movement of the teeth. If the case requires elastics to help with anterior/posterior movement, buttons may also be bonded so the elastics have something to hook to. If the teeth are crowded, some may need a fraction of a millimeter shaved off of them. This isn’t as drastic as it sounds but gives space for the teeth to move into their proper position. We then insert the first set of trays and confirm the fit. These trays are worn for 7-10 days at a time before advancing to the next tray. Each tray moves the teeth more than the last to achieve the final desired result. We check the patients once a month to ensure that the teeth are tracking or moving according to the treatment plan.

Patients need to wear the aligner trays for at least 22 hours a day. If there is non-compliance (ie the trays are not being worn for enough time in a day) the movement will take longer and the results may be compromised. The trays should only be removed while eating or drinking liquids other than water. After eating, the teeth need to be brushed prior to inserting the trays back in. Extra care has to given to oral hygiene as the aligners can hold cavity-causing substances close to the teeth and prevent saliva from being able to cleanse the teeth.

It is important to note that Invisalign and Suresmile have some limitations and not every case can be treated with aligners. In this case, we may recommend that you see an orthodontist to have traditional braces done.

At the completion of treatment, retainers must be made. Teeth will drift back into misalignment if they are not held in their new positions. There are fixed retainers that are small wires bonded to the back sides of the front teeth. Removable retainers that we use are clear trays (much like your Invisalign/Suresmile aligners). Often, we will provide patients with both to achieve maximum retention.

If you want straight teeth without the metal smile, ask us if you are a candidate for Invisalign or Suresmile!

Clear Aligner Technology

Removable Retainers

Fixed Retainers

Written by Hometown Dental Okotoks

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