You love the idea of clear, removable aligners for straightening your teeth, and you’re anxious to join the 12 million people who’ve already made the journey to a great smile with Invisalign®.
To give you an idea about what to expect, our skilled team of dental practitioners at Willow Glen Dental Specialists has pulled together a step-by-step guide for getting started with Invisalign, plus a few tips.
It starts with technology
One of the reasons Invisalign is so effective is that we use advanced digital technology to not only create your aligners but to formulate a plan and timeline for your straightening goals. Using the iTero™ digital scanner, we create a 3D image that helps us visualize your current alignment needs. And our ClinCheck™ software shows you what your smile will look like at the end of your journey.
Once we agree on a plan, we send the information to Invisalign where your sets of aligners will be manufactured.
Receiving your first aligners
When your aligners are ready, we’ll contact you so you can come to our office for your first fitting. This in-person visit is important, as we want to make sure the aligners fit your teeth and gums comfortably.
Your aligners moving forward
One of the advantages of Invisalign over traditional metal braces is that you won’t be visiting us as often for adjustments. Invisalign has the information it needs to directly send you new aligners (typically every two weeks) to keep your teeth moving in the right direction. That said, we may want to check in with you along the way to ensure that everything is on track.
Living with your aligners
Now that you better understand what the start of your Invisalign journey will look like, let’s take a look at life with these clear aligners.
While one of the biggest benefits of Invisalign is that you can remove them, we ask that you only do so for:
- Cleaning your teeth
- Eating and drinking
- Special events
For best results and to keep to your timeline, you should wear your aligners for 22 hours each day.
A few tips for using Invisalign
We also want to offer a few tips for drinking with your aligners. In general, drinking water with your aligners in place is perfectly acceptable. What we want you to avoid is drinking extremely hot or cold beverages that can change the shape of your aligners.
As well, don’t drink any liquids that can stain the aligners, such as coffee, tea, red wine, or colored drinks. The plastic aligners can stain more easily than your enamel, and you would be working against the main reason why you opted for Invisalign — you can barely notice them.
If you do want to keep the aligners in while you drink, use a straw to bypass the aligners, though we recommend just removing them.
We also recommend that you rinse and/or brush your teeth after eating or drinking before you put your aligners back in. The aligners can trap harmful bacteria that your saliva might normally clear away, so be mindful of this and only use your aligners on clean teeth and gums.
If you have more questions about using Invisalign, please contact our office in San Jose, California, by calling 408-478-9081, or you can book an appointment with us online.