For patients who want to straighten their teeth but don’t want to wear metal braces, Invisalign’s clear aligners are an excellent alternative. Invisalign has been proven to effectively straighten a wide variety of misaligned teeth and bites. Dr. Bhave is a certified Invisalign provider who works to give beautiful, bright smiles to our adult and teen patients.
What is Invisalign Clear Teeth Straightening?
Invisalign consists of a series of clear plastic aligners that fit snugly over your teeth and gradually straighten your smile, eliminating the need for traditional brackets and wires. Each aligner shifts your teeth slightly, moving them horizontally and vertically and even rotating them when needed.
When you change to the next set of aligners (typically every two weeks) your teeth gradually move into position, following a custom treatment plan mapped out by your doctor.
Invisalign treatment can be delivered to adults and teens who have all their adult teeth and complete jaw growth.
Advantages of Invisalign
- Invisalign aligners are practically invisible – People see your natural smile instead of a line of bulky metal braces.
- Invisalign aligners are easily removable – You can easily remove the aligners to eat, clean your teeth or for special occasions.
- Invisalign aligners fit comfortably in your mouth – The aligners fit snugly over your teeth, and there are no metal brackets or wires to cause irritation.
- There are no dietary restrictions – since there are no metal brackets or wires that can trap food, you can eat anything you want.
- Invisalign aligners require fewer visits to the dentist – With traditional braces, you need to see your dentist every two to four weeks. Invisalign patients only need to return to the dentist about every six weeks.
Complimentary Invisalign Consultation and $500 Off Full Treatment
Take advantage of our Complimentary Invisalign Consultation and see one of our doctors to find out if Invisalign clear aligners are right for you. We are also offering patients who start Invisalign $500 off their full treatment! Your visit will include:
How Invisalign Procedure Works
During your initial consultation, the doctor will discuss your smile goals with you and will determine if you are eligible for Invisalign. If you are found to be a candidate for the treatment, the doctor will explain in detail how the procedure works and will answer all of your questions.
Planning Your Treatment
The doctor will take impressions of your upper and lower teeth as well as a full set of digital x-rays and photos. These will be sent to the technical staff at Invisalign’s lab, who will work with the doctor to create a customized digital treatment plan.
When the plan is completed, the doctor will show you a video animation of how your teeth will shift at each stage of the procedure. You will also receive an estimate of how long your treatment should take.
Custom Sets of Clear Aligners
The Invisalign lab will create a series of clear aligners made specifically for you. The aligners fit snugly over your teeth and are made out of a smooth, BPA-free medical-grade polymer (plastic). The aligners don’t rely on metal and rubber to move your teeth. Without the metal and rubber constantly rubbing against the inside of your mouth, the treatment is much less irritating than traditional braces.
You will wear each aligner for about two weeks before you switch to the next aligner in the series. About every six weeks you will return to our office to see the doctor, who will check on your progress and ensure your treatment is progressing properly.
Although treatment time varies from patient to patient, the average time to complete clear aligner treatment is about one year, whereas treatment with traditional braces can often take two to three years.
Invisalign Express: Minor Misalignment Quick Correction
For small correction needs, our doctors can provide Invisalign Express. Invisalign Express is an affordable, fast and convenient way to correct minor flaws in the alignment of your teeth, such as minor crowding or spacing.
Regular Invisalign treatment requires between 20 and 30 aligners to move your teeth into their final positions. With Invisalign Express, only 10 aligners or less are usually needed to correct these smaller problems, bringing full treatment time down to about three to six months. After a complimentary consultation, we can let you know if Invisalign Express will give you the results you desire.
We also offer Invisalign Teen, an Invisalign system specially tailored to the needs of teenagers. This treatment can be delivered to any teenager whose permanent teeth have fully come through (erupted).
Invisalign Teen is as effective as traditional braces for resolving most orthodontic problems, and treatment time is about the same. Dr. Bhave can determine if your teen is eligible for this special Invisalign program after a comprehensive exam and evaluation.
Conditions Invisalign Can Correct
Invisalign treatment can resolve a wide variety of orthodontic problems, from mild cases of crooked or protruding teeth to more difficult and serious issues. Here are some of the conditions that can be effectively fixed with Invisalign:
Overly crowded teeth
When there is too little room in your jaw for your teeth to fit normally, overcrowding can occur. If left untreated, overly crowded teeth can trap food. Trapped food is harder to clean away, and this can lead to plaque formation, decay and gum disease.
In an overbite, the upper teeth bite over the lower teeth. This can cause wear on your lower teeth, chipped or fractured front teeth, gum irritation and pain in your jaw joints. It can also play a role in bringing on gum disease.
In an underbite, the lower teeth protrude past the upper teeth. This can prevent the normal function of your front teeth or molars, and can lead to tooth wear. It can also cause jaw-joint related pain.
Gaps between the teeth
This is usually the result of abnormal continued growth of the jawbone. It can also be caused by teeth shifting into an open space left by a missing tooth. Gaps between teeth are traps for food and bacteria. This increases the risk of tooth decay and gum disease.
In an open bite, some of the teeth do not make contact with the opposing teeth. This leaves an open space between the upper and lower teeth. An open bite can cause poor or painful chewing and can lead to jaw joint problems. Open bites have also been known to adversely affect proper speech.
In a crossbite, one or more of the upper teeth bite on the inside of the lower teeth. This can happen on the front and/or side of the mouth. It can lead to wear on the teeth, gum disease and bone loss.
How Much Does Invisalign Cost?
There are many aspects of Invisalign clear braces to consider regarding the price tag. The cost of your Invisalign could be considerably lower or higher than the next patient depending on the complexity of your teeth straightening treatment. Invisalign fees range from $1,800 to $9,500, with Invisalign for teens averaging around $3,000.
The typical adult treatment may run $5,700 for full Invisalign clear braces. In contrast, the average adult with traditional metal braces may pay up to $7,000 for their comprehensive treatment. For some, Invisalign treatment will be similar to the price of metal braces.
Invisalign Express is a shorter treatment with fewer aligners and is often the best and most affordable option for men and women with minor tooth and bite corrections. Your dental insurance plan may cover a portion of the Invisalign cost, but some insurers classify these invisible braces as cosmetic, which falls outside the scope of coverage. Many of our Bay area patients use their FSA (flex spending account) or HSA (health savings account) to pay for Invisalign.
Most people interested in Invisalign find the benefits of clear aligners for teeth straightening and bite corrections well worth the added cost. Invisalign saves you time by requiring fewer visits. There are no dietary restrictions, and invisible braces don’t impact your smile’s cosmetic appeal, unlike unsightly metal braces with brackets and wires.
At Bay Area Dental Specialists in San Jose, we offer a new patient special for Invisalign, where you receive $500 off the full treatment when you request an Invisalign consultation.
Does Invisalign® have a proven record of success?
In the past two decades, over 7 million patients have seen amazing improvements to their smiles thanks to Invisalign orthodontic treatments. Among these patients were not only millions of adults who were happy to have an alternative to traditional braces that are obvious in work and social situations, but also many teenagers who were eager to avoid adding any extra awkwardness to their high school years.
Is there more than one type of Invisalign® aligner?
In addition to the traditional model of Invisalign, there are several more varieties designed to suit different types of patients. Invisalign Teen is tailored specifically toward teenagers’ mouths. Invisalign Express is for less severe cases of misalignment that can be resolved in a shorter period of time. Invisalign Full addresses teeth with serious bite issues. Invisalign Lite is best for teeth that need to move only slightly. Invisalign i7 can target a single tooth or few isolated teeth while leaving alone teeth that do not require treatment; it is most commonly recommended to patients who have previously had orthodontic work done and have noticed a tooth or two drifting out of place.
More recently, Invisalign has introduced a variety with mandibular advancement, which works to correct a patient’s overbite at the same time it straightens the teeth. This innovative aligner gradually nudges the lower jaw forward, eliminating the need for elastics.
How do costs compare with traditional braces?
On average, the price of Invisalign is higher than traditional orthodontic braces, though many patients consider it worthwhile to have the inconspicuous option. They also enjoy not having to return to the dentist’s office so frequently: whereas traditional braces require regular appointments for adjustments, Invisalign patients simply swap out aligners every one to two weeks without the need for a visit.
The precise cost of Invisalign will depend on how misaligned your teeth are and how many aligners will be necessary to treat the problem. Fortunately, most dental insurance plans will help to cover Invisalign. Bay Area Dental Specialists offers flexible payment options, as well as free consultations for Invisalign.
Is a plastic aligner sufficient for all cases?
As one of San Jose, Los Gatos and Campbell’s most experienced dentists, Dr. Ashwini Bhave will evaluate your teeth to anticipate how they will move. For some patients, she will recommend adding SmartForce® to the overall treatment plan. SmartForce® attachments are small additions to the usual aligners that help with more severe cases. These attachments fit in your mouth comfortably, and because they are white, blend in well with your existing teeth.
After your Invisalign treatment is complete, Dr. Bhave may also provide you with a retainer to stop your teeth from shifting back into place. Similar to Invisalign, many of these new retainers are constructed with clear plastic and are not easy to spot in the mouth.
How does Invisalign® compare to ClearCorrect?
Invisalign is the most popular choice for patients seeking a clear orthodontic appliance, but there are multiple competing products. ClearCorrect uses plastic material that tends to be thinner than Invisalign. While some patients consider ClearCorrect more “comfortable,” that comes at the cost of having to wear it for a much longer period of time, as it shifts the teeth much more slowly.
Both Invisalign and ClearCorrect are designed to gradually move crooked teeth into place, but Invisalign will achieve your goals more quickly. You will also find Invisalign aligners to be extremely comfortable; so, in the end, you don’t really need to choose between comfort and speed.
What is the Invisalign Treatment Process?
Your journey to a straight, beautiful smile starts with X-rays and teeth impressions used to create a 3D simulation of your mouth and map out the precise movements needed to straighten and align your teeth correctly. A customized series of aligner trays are made using medical-grade, BPA-free plastic. These aligners are switched out every two weeks and worn for 20 to 22 hours a day. You can remove them for eating, brushing and flossing. You will need to rinse, brush and floss before placing them back in your mouth, and only drink water while wearing your aligners to prevent staining or damaging the trays.
Visits with our orthodontist are typically needed every six weeks to make sure your teeth are moving as planned. The duration of your Invisalign treatment will depend on the diligence with which you wear your aligners and follow our dentists’ instructions. It typically takes one year for most patients to reach their full Invisalign results.
Once your teeth and bite are corrected, you will need to wear a retainer every night to maintain your straightened smile.
How Do I Clean My Invisalign Clear Aligners?
Invisalign cleaning systems are available, but you can also keep your clear aligners clean by brushing the inside and outside surfaces with a soft-bristled toothbrush using lukewarm water. You don’t want to use hot water because the high temperature can warp the plastic.
Will the Clear Aligners Affect My Everyday Life?
One of the major benefits of invisible braces with Invisalign is that most people in your life won’t notice you have them, and they don’t alter your day-to-day. Though, you may hear a slight difference in your speech when you wear them. The aligners are removed when you eat, so you can enjoy any food without limitations as long as you brush, floss and rinse before putting them back in after your meal or snack.
What Should I Do If I Lose or Damage an Aligner?
The first thing you need to do after losing or damaging an Invisalign aligner is contact Bay Area Dental Specialists for directions on what to do next. Sometimes, you may be able to move onto the next aligner if the two-week mark is just a few days away, while other times, you may need to use the previous set of aligners to prevent your teeth from moving and affecting your treatment plan.