Invisalign® Treatment for Teens
The average child has 20 primary teeth. These teeth are lost as the “adult” teeth, or permanent teeth begin to grow in. Most people get their first adult tooth around the age of six or seven, and have nearly all of their permanent teeth by the age of 13. The average number of permanent teeth is 32. There is a big difference between 20 baby teeth and 32 permanent teeth, so it is not surprising that many people experience orthodontic issues in their pre-teen and teen years. Invisalign® corrects common malocclusion problems, including spacing issues and crooked teeth, to provide patients with a straighter, healthier smile. Unlike traditional braces, Invisalign® improves the bite without relying on unsightly and uncomfortable metal brackets and wires. At Dental Solutions, we believe that patients of all ages deserve to benefit from the advantages of Invisalign®, so we offer Invisalign® Teen to our younger Warsaw, IN patients.
How Does Invisalign® Work?
Invisalign® is a metal-free system that corrects the position of the teeth and jaw to give patients a straighter and more attractive smile. Looking at the clear, plastic aligners that are worn throughout Invisalign® treatment, it can be difficult to understand how Invisalign® works. Most people are accustomed to the heavy, metal brackets and wires that are used in traditional orthodontic treatment. Invisalign® aligners actually place consistent pressure on the teeth, just as braces do, only they are able to do so in a manner that is much more comfortable, convenient, and discreet.
Before beginning Invisalign® treatment, patients will undergo a thorough examination. If they are deemed ideal candidates for Invisalign® treatment, a set of molds and digital images will be used to customize an Invisalign® treatment plan. These images will be used to fabricate a series of Invisalign® aligners. Invisalign® aligners are worn over the teeth much like a mouth guard. They are thin, clear, and flexible, so they fit comfortably and are practically invisible. The aligners must be worn for a minimum of 20-22 hours a day, though they can be removed while the patient eats or brushes their teeth. Approximately every two weeks, patients will progress to a new set of aligners.
Some Invisalign® providers avoid offering Invisalign® to teen patients. However, our dentists believe that Invisalign® offers benefits that should be enjoyed by patients of all ages. Rather than basing Invisalign® candidacy on a patient’s age, we consider the malocclusion problems that need to be corrected and whether the patient is mature enough and responsible enough to wear the Invisalign® aligners as directed. Since Invisalign® can correct many of the same issues as traditional braces, most of our teen patients are ideal candidates for this teeth straightening technique. Parents who wonder if Invisalign® is right for their teen should ask themselves the following questions:
- Can I trust my teen to wear their aligners for at least 20-22 hours a day?
- Will my teen keep track of their aligners when they aren’t being worn?
- Is my teen concerned about how traditional braces will affect their smile?
If the answers to these questions are “yes,” Invisalign® is likely to be a great option for your teen.
Invisalign® offers benefits to patients of all ages, but many of them are especially appealing to teens, including the following:
- Invisalign® is discreet and doesn’t detract from the appearance of the smile
- There are no food restrictions while undergoing Invisalign® treatment
- Invisalign® requires less time at the dentist because there are no adjustments and no brackets or wires that need repairing
- Invisalign® aligners can be removed while eating, caring for the teeth, playing sports, or even for special events (like Prom)
- Invisalign® aligners won’t irritate the gums and soft tissues of the mouth like traditional braces do
If your teen is in need of orthodontic treatment and they have been dreading braces, it is time to consider Invisalign® Teen. Contact us at your earliest convenience to learn more about Invisalign® treatment and how it can benefit your child.