Invisalign is an appliance that many people use to straighten their teeth. On average, it takes less than two years to see results with Invisalign, with some cases taking as quick as six months. Take note that every smile is different and can take more or less time depending on what is needed. The treatment time is directly related to the complexity of the issue that needs to be addressed. Read below to learn more about the factors that can cause a longer treatment time for Invisalign, along with alternative teeth-straightening methods.

How Does Invisalign Work?

Invisalign is a kind of aligner that uses plastic trays to slowly straighten teeth alignment. The trays need to be worn at least 20 hours a day and are only removed when eating or cleaning the teeth. Patients can avail of Invisalign in orthodontist clinics and specially trained dentist offices. The doctor will take special 3D images of the mouth or take plaster molds of the mouth during the first visit. These molds are then used to make the custom Invisalign trays for the teeth.

Factors Affecting Treatment Length

Although some patients who use Invisalign may be done with the treatment in as little as 6 months, there are cases that can take up to two years. Some of the various factor that can increase treatment time include the type of spacing or occlusion, patient age, and compliance with treatment plan. Learn more about them below:

Type of Spacing or Occlusion

Invisalign can be a great option for those with overbite (upper teeth overlap lower teeth), underbite (lower teeth extend past upper teeth, crowding (smaller jaw that causes crooked teeth) and gap (large spaces between teeth). The kind of spacing or crowding issue will determine the length of time of wearing Invisalign to get the desired results. The dentist or orthodontist can give a better time estimate of a particular case.

Patient Age

With younger patients, the teeth tend to be easier to align. This is the reason why braces are common among middle and high school students. However, this does not mean that adult teeth cannot be straightened. It only means that doing so with adult teeth can take longer.

Treatment Plan Compliance

Treatment time can also be affected by how closely you follow the treatment plan. The Invisalign trays are designed to move one tooth at a time. This means that when one tooth is aligned, you need to move on to the next one, so you need to change to another tray. There is usually a schedule for this. If this schedule is not properly followed, the treatment can take longer.

Invisalign Best Practices

• Keep up with scheduled orthodontist or dentist appointments.
• Wear the Invisalign trays for at least 20 hours a day, and only remove for eating and for shorts periods of time when it is necessary.
• Change trays according to the set schedule.
• If you are not sure of the treatment plan, ask your dentist or orthodontist to go over it with you.

Alternatives to Invisalign

If the schedule wearing and switching of trays prove to be too much for you, or if you find that the treatment takes too long, there are other options. You can get traditional braces or lingual braces which sometimes take less time. They might not be as aesthetically pleasing as Invisalign, but they can work faster and give quicker results. Talk to your dentist about other options for teeth straightening.

Author's Bio: 

Ryan Daniel is a professional Dentist in Castle Hills of Lewisville, The Colony, Tx and genuinely care about the health and well being of teeth and gums. Visit my website: D. Dental