Dentist Gulshan Dhanoya on transforming your smile with Invisalign
HLN's Expert in Residence for all things dentistry, Gulshan Dhanoya, explains the benefits of straightening your teeth with Invisalign treatment
By Dentist Gulshan Dhanoya
What is Invisalign?
Typically, braces have been associated with teenage years, ‘metal mouth’ and that unattractive stage of life in secondary school. Well, not any more. Orthodontic braces have become much more accepted amongst both teenagers and adults in the UK. More and more adults are starting to enquire about ‘invisible braces’, with an increased demand for aesthetic dentistry. Invisalign is an increasingly popular treatment for patients looking for a discrete, comfortable way to straighten their teeth.
Invisalign is a system made to straighten teeth using clear, plastic aligners, which are custom-made to fit your teeth. These clear plastic aligners snap into place over your teeth, gripping onto tiny white ‘attachments’ made of white filling materials which are placed on the front surface of some of your teeth. These plastic aligners are changed every one-two weeks, gradually moving your teeth into position.
As the aligners are clear, they are almost invisible when worn, which appeals to many of our adult patients, especially if they have client-facing jobs, or if they would be self-conscious about wearing traditional metal braces.
How do I start my Invisalign journey?
Invisalign is a completely digital service, used internationally. You will first need to find a local Invisalign provider. At Honour Health, we have a wealth of experience in providing Invisalign at our clinics. An Invisalign dentist will carry out a full orthodontic assessment to see if you are suitable for Invisalign braces. Photos, x-rays and a digital scan will be carried out, along with a full clinical assessment, and all information will be sent to Invisalign. It is important that you are dentally fit for orthodontic treatment, so your dentist will carefully check that your teeth and gums are healthy and that you have enough bone. Your dentist will explain this in-depth during your assessment.
What is a digital scan?
At Honour Health, we use a state-of-the-art machine called the iTero scanner, which means we can scan your teeth digitally instead of taking a physical impression. This means you can see a detailed 3D simulation there and then on the screen, of what your teeth look like now, and what they could look like after Invisalign. It is completely pain-free and easy, and it means there is no need for messy, gooey impression material! It’s always a ‘wow’ moment for our patients when they see an instant simulation of how their smile can be transformed with Invisalign. At Honour Health, we provide a digital scan as part of your free smile consultation.
How long does the treatment take?
Invisalign has different treatment options, depending on the degree of alignment required.
Invisalign Lite is a treatment of 14 aligners and can achieve minor movements in a short space of time.
Invisalign Full is a treatment plan with an unlimited number of aligners, meaning more severe crowding can be treated.
Typically, Invisalign treatment can range from 6-12 months.
Can I remove my Invisalign aligners?
Unlike traditional fixed braces, Invisalign braces are removable. It is recommended that aligners should be worn for 22 hours a day, and should only be removed for eating and drinking.
Patients who don’t wear their aligners won’t see their teeth move!