Invisalign® is a revolutionary new treatment that forgoes the metal bracket and wires braces of old in favor of clear acrylic aligners that gently guide the patient’s teeth into place. Patients wear an average of 20 to 30 sets of aligners, over a period of 12-18 months to achieve their desired results, all without painful wire tightening appointments or food restrictions. Dr. David Eshom proudly offers this incredible orthodontic treatment for our patients who long for a straight, beautiful smile.
To learn more about the benefits of Invisalign® or schedule a consultation with Dr. Eshom, call our San Diego, CA dental office today at (858) 455-9151.
About the Invisalign® Program
Invisalign® replaces the metal brackets and wires of traditional braces with clear acrylic aligners that gently move teeth into place, providing patients with a revolution in orthodontic treatment. With Invisalign® patients no longer need to dread the monthly visit to their orthodontist to have wires tightened, because the system straightens teeth without the use of wires. While traditional braces place restrictions on what foods patients can eat, forbidding favorites like corn on the cob, taffy, and even chewing gum for fear of pulling a wire or bracket loose, Invisalign® patients can remove their aligners, allowing them to eat anything they want, whenever they want it. Removable aligners make cleaning teeth a breeze as well. Invisalign® requires no bands and patients no longer have to worry about wires pulling loose and cutting up the inside of their cheeks and lips. The average Invisalign® treatment lasts just 12 to 18 months, as opposed to the two years necessary for most patients who wear traditional braces. Most of our patients, however, find the virtual invisibility of the Invisalign® aligners the biggest advantage of the treatment. Our adult patients can now undergo orthodontic treatment, confident that nobody will know about it except Dr. Eshom.
Who Can Use Invisalign®?
The advent of Invisalign® means that orthodontic treatment no longer benefits only teenagers. Dr. Eshom treats many adults with Invisalign® orthodontics, including many who wore traditional metal braces as teens. Invisalign® aligners can repair many dental problems, such as overbites, underbites, and crooked or rotated teeth. The aligners work well for patients with wide spaces between their teeth, helping even when other teeth have shifted and moved into those spaces. Adults suffering from malocclusion, which occurs when the upper and lower teeth don’t fit well together, often find that Invisalign® aligners work wonders for their smiles, preventing the speech problems, teeth grinding (bruxism), TMJ disorder, and frequent biting of the cheeks and tongue the malady often causes.
Invisalign® provides benefits for more than just adult patients, though. In fact, the makers of Invisalign® have made sure to include teenagers by developing a special treatment program specifically for them. The program, called Invisalign® Teen, offers teenagers all the benefits of the adult plan, with a few unique additions to help keep them on track with the treatment plan. The Invisalign® Teen aligners have blue dots on them that fade as the teen wears the aligner. If the blue dot remains when the teen finishes with that aligner, his parents will know he has not stayed compliant with his treatment plan. The people behind Invisalign® Teen realize that teenagers have very busy lives and tend to forget things easily, so they have included six bonus aligners with the program for free. So if Jimmy accidentally throws his aligner away in the cafeteria at lunch, or Michelle loses hers at summer camp, you only need to call our office, and we will order a replacement aligner, free of charge.
The Invisalign® Treatment Process
The Invisalign® process starts with a consultation with Dr. Eshom. The doctor will discuss the Invisalign® treatment with you, taking time to answer any questions you may have. When you both agree that Invisalign® offers the best solution for you, the doctor will schedule a second appointment.
At your second appointment, the excitement will begin. Dr. Eshom will start by taking digital images of your mouth and feeding them into the Invisalign® proprietary software. The software will process the images and create a custom treatment plan tailored to your specific needs. The plan will outline everything from the number of aligners you will need to wear to the length of your treatment. Dr. Eshom will forward your treatment plan to an Invisalign® lab, where technicians will use it to create your aligners.
When the lab returns your aligners to our office, you will return for another visit. The doctor will give you your first three sets of aligners, along with instructions for their use and care. Over the course of the treatment, most patients wear 20 to 30 sets of aligners for two weeks each. You must keep your aligners in your mouth for 20 to 22 hours a day to stay compliant with your treatment plan, removing them only for eating and cleaning your teeth. Failure to follow these parameters may result in a longer treatment time.
The doctor will provide you with three sets of aligners at a time, and you will return every six weeks for a quick checkup and to receive your next few sets of aligners. When you successfully complete your course of treatment, Dr. Eshom will provide you with a retainer to wear. This retainer will help keep your teeth in their new places, so your beautiful new smile will last.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Invisalign® Treatment
Just like any other dental treatment, Invisalign® comes with its own unique set of advantages and disadvantages that patients will need to take into consideration when deciding if the treatment presents the best option for restoring their smile.
Invisalign® clear aligners have several clear advantages over traditional bracket and wire braces. Most patients consider the aligners’ appearance, or lack thereof, the biggest advantage. With Invisalign® clear aligners patients can have their teeth straightened without sacrificing their professional adult appearance. Removable aligners make food restrictions a thing of the past. Patients can eat any food they want during their treatment, without worrying about loosening a bracket or breaking a wire. The removable aligners also make brushing and flossing much easier for patients. No longer will they need to worry about small bits of food getting stuck in their brackets and wires, which will help prevent tooth decay and periodontal disease. Finally, with no monthly visits required to have wires tightened, most patients experience very little, if any, discomfort during their treatment.
Invisalign® treatment has only a few drawbacks. For most patients, the cost of treatment draws the most concern. Invisalign® treatment typically costs more than traditional braces, and most dental insurance will only cover the treatment to the extent that they would cover bracket and wire braces. Dr. Eshom, however, offers financing through Care Credit to make the aligners affordable for just about every one of our patients.
When patients first begin wearing their Invisalign® aligners, they often experience difficulty speaking clearly. Most find this drawback a temporary one, as they typically get used to them and return to speaking normally fairly quickly. Some patients worry that the success of the treatment relies completely on their compliance with the treatment plan. They may not want the pressure of trying to remember to put aligners back in their mouth after eating or when to change to a new aligner. Dr. Eshom typically recommends that these patients choose traditional braces rather than Invisalign®.
Call Our Office Today
To learn more about Invisalign® clear aligners, or to schedule an Invisalign® consultation with Dr. Eshom, call our San Diego, CA, dental office today at (858) 455-9151.