Invisalign frequently asked questions

Some commonly asked questions about Invisalign braces. If you have any questions you can call us or visit us at High Wycombe, Beaconsfield and Ealing, London.

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About Invisalign

Invisalign

What is Invisalign

Invisalign is the virtually invisible way to straighten your teeth and achieve the dazzling smile you've always dreamed of. Using advanced 3D computer-imaging technology, Invisalign depicts your complete treatment plan based on your orthodontists prescription, from the initial position of your teeth to the final desired position. Then a series of clear aligners are custom-made for your teeth – and your teeth only – to move them little by little. Each aligner is worn for about two weeks before being replaced by the next in the series, until the final position of your teeth is achieved. Your Invisalign treatment time will be determined by your orthodontist, based on your specific needs.

What are the benefits of Invisalign?

Invisalign aligners are practically invisible. No one may even notice that you’re wearing these virtually invisible ‘braces’, making Invisalign a seamless fit with your lifestyle and day-to-day interactions with others.

Invisalign aligners are removable. Unlike fixed metal braces, you have the flexibility to eat and drink what you want during treatment by simply removing the aligners. And you can also remove the aligners to brush and floss as you normally would for fresh breath and to maintain good oral hygiene.

Invisalign aligners are comfortable. Unlike traditional fixed braces, there are no metal brackets or wires that could cause irritation to your mouth. This also means that in most cases less time is spent in the Octagon Orthodontics practice for adjustments.

And finally, Invisalign allows you to view your virtual results and treatment plan before you even begin treatment so you can see how your straight teeth are expected to look when your treatment is complete.

Is this a new way to straighten teeth?

Octagon Orthodontics have, in the past, successfully used removable appliances for years. But with the application of Align Technology’s 3D computer technology and mass-customisation, the Invisalign system can be used to treat almost anyone who wants straighter teeth. The unique Invisalign software allows patients to see their treatment from beginning to end even before the start of treatment.

How do I get started with Invisalign?

Just make an appointment with Octagon Orthodontics for an initial consultation at any of or practice locations. High Wycombe, Beaconsfield and Ealing, London.

Can any practitioner straighten teeth with Invisalign?

While Invisalign can be used with virtually any treatment philosophy, special training is needed. Dr Peter Ilori at Octagon Orthodontics is a Diamond provider of Invisalign and a clinical speaker for Align Technology Invisalign events.

How does Invisalign work?

Invisalign aligners move teeth with an appropriate placement of controlled movement on the teeth. Unlike traditional braces, Invisalign not only controls the amount of movement per aligner, but also the timing of the movement. So at each stage, only certain teeth are allowed to move, as determined by the orthodontic treatment plan for that particular stage. This results in an efficient force delivery system that moves teeth into the desired prescribed position.

What are aligners made of and what do they look like?

The virtually invisible aligners are made of strong medical grade thermoplastic material, uniquely developed for the Invisalign treatment plan. The aligners are custom-made for you and fit snugly over your teeth. Some orthodontists have referred to them as ‘contact lenses for teeth’.

How old is the company?

Align Technology, Inc., the company that manufactures Invisalign, was founded in 1997. Octagon Orthdontics is a specialist orthodontic practice that have been straightening patients teeth since 1996. The Octagon Orthodontics specialist team is led by Dr Peter Ilori who has over 27 years of dental/orthodontic experience and is an Invisalign Diamond provider.

How old is the technology?

In 1945, Dr. H.D. Kiesling envisioned that one day modern technology would enable the use of a series of tooth positioners to produce the kinds of movements required for comprehensive orthodontic treatment. Align Technology has made this vision a reality. Using advanced computer technology, Align Technology produces Invisalign, a series of customised clear aligners. Each aligner is worn sequentially by the patient to produce extensive tooth movements in both upper and lower arches.

How many patients are being treated with Invisalign?

More than 1.9 million patients worldwide have been treated with Invisalign. The number of Invisalign smiles grows daily.

Does Invisalign have ISO certification?

ISO is an international organisation which promotes standardisation and grants Quality Certifications. Align is certified to the ISO 13485:2003 standard. This standard is granted to companies which comply with the regulatory requirements for medical equipment and devices.

Has the FDA cleared Invisalign?

Invisalign aligners are cleared by the US FDA (Food and Drug Administration). Align Technology, Inc. has held the necessary 510K clearance from the FDA since 1998 to be able to sell and market the Invisalign system.

Do Invisalign aligners contain Bisphenol-A (BPA)?

No. Invisalign aligners do not contain Bisphenol-A or phthalate plasticisers. Invisalign aligners are made of USP Class VI medical grade, high molecular weight, polyurethane resins. Tests have been conducted to determine the biocompatibility of these materials, and show that they are biocompatible and pass all applicable regulatory requirements and thresholds for human wear in the mouth. Of course, as with any medical device, you should consult with your orthodontist about your aligner treatment and any applicable risks of use.

Invisalign interview with Dr Peter Ilori

Interested in starting to treat your teenage patients with Invisalign? Dr Ilori explains why his teenage patients are showing a preference for aligners rather than metal.

For how long have you been treating teenagers with Invisalign?

Since the day Invisalign Teen was launched in March 2009

What is according to your experience the benefit of Invisalign compared to a treatment with traditional fixed braces?

The advantages of Invisalign can be seen from both the patient and clinical perspective.

My teenage patients report that it is truly invisible, easy to wear and is generally perceived to be more comfortable (less painful) than traditional fixed braces. Teenagers tend to cope better with the care instructions and there is less interference with their dietary habits. For patients who have confidence or social problems, the product has been very successful in reducing teasing and bullying in their school and social environments. Parents find it easier and feel more confident to supervise their children’s treatment thanks to the compliance indicators.

From a clinical point of view it is easy to start a case with the additional benefits of reduced clinical time and no emergencies. There is a high level of patient acceptance of this product so it sells itself. The Clincheck feature helps me plan, visualise and explain clearly what the end result is likely to be. I have received a lot of positive comments from parents and children who feel that by choosing Invisalign they are part of a new wave of cutting edge technology in orthodontics. This serves as good PR for my practice

Which Invisalign products do you use for the treatment of teenagers?

We mainly use Invisalign Teen but in a few cases we will use Invisalign Lite or even the adult version.

In March 2009, Align Technology launched Invisalign Teen with features that are specifically designed for teenagers (such as the compliance indicators, eruptions tabs and compensators and free replacement aligners). Which of these features do you as a practitioner appreciate the most?

All of these combined ensure a product that is well supported and effective to tackle most malocclusions. The free replacement aligners give confidence to parents who are fearful of surprise or additional costs.

As it is not always possible to predict the eruption path of the canines, 2nd premolars and 2nd molars, a doctor might need to change the final position or stage of these teeth. This change is not regarded a mid-course correction by Align Technology and will not be charged. How valuable is this to you as a practitioner?

This is very valuable because ectopic teeth are common and any practitioner will need to capture and align these teeth as they come through. Also from a cost perspective patients would not be happy if additional charge is applied during the treatment.

According to your experience, what is the most crucial benefit for parents when choosing Invisalign for their children?

Most parents would do anything to prevent their children being unhappy over the type of brace they need to wear. Traditional braces tend to trigger battles relating to eating sweets during treatment, the frequency of tooth brushing and regular visits to repair broken braces-all of which can be avoided by choosing Invisalign Teen. The reduced number of appointments results in a better attendance at school with less missed lessons. With Invisalign Teen parents whose children are in boarding schools far away from home are still confident of achieving a good result despite the displacement caused by distance.

What is the most crucial benefit for the teenagers?

The crucial benefit is that teenagers get their teeth straightened without compromising their self image, confidence or appearance.

How commercially interesting is it for you as an orthodontist to offer Invisalign to your teenage patients?

Selecting the right cases and completing and achieving treatment goals with excellence in mind is rewarding. Invisalign Teen is profitable because we make savings on materials, chair side or clinical time and repairs.

What kind of marketing activities do you use when promoting Invisalign to your teenage patients?

We do a lot of internal marketing using posters and brochures and we get a lot of our referrers involved in espousing the benefits of the teen products.

Which role do you think Invisalign will play in your practice when it comes to teenage patients?

The most potent and virulent driver is Invisalign Teen because of its high acceptability within this age group.

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