Orthodontic treatment has always been associated with metal braces and bright color elastics. For some, the idea of wearing braces just is not their thing. Luckily, technology has provided alternatives to traditional orthodontic brackets and wires. At Craig & Streight Orthodontics, we’re proud to offer one of these alternative methods to achieve the smile of your dreams: Invisalign.

As Invisalign providers in OKC, our goal is to give our clients the best options available. Braces are great for some people, but others may want a more discreet way to straighten their teeth. If you’ve ever wondered how Invisalign works or if the treatment is right for you, read on. We’ve answered all your burning Invisalign questions to help you make the most informed decision possible.

What is Invisalign?

Invisalign is an orthodontic treatment that uses clear, removable aligners to straighten your teeth over time. As an alternative to braces, Invisalign aligners are free from awkward metal, wires and elastics. They’re made from a flexible, FDA-approved plastic that is custom fit to your teeth to make the teeth-alignment process as easy as saying “cheese.”

How does Invisalign work?

Everyone’s teeth are totally unique — that’s why your Invisalign treatment will be tailored to your specific needs. Combining 3D imaging technology with the 100-year-old science of orthodontics, Invisalign aligners work to gradually move your teeth into the desired position, as prescribed by your orthodontist. Throughout your treatment, you’ll wear a series of aligners created for each stage of the process. In as little as a year, you’ll have the smile you’ve always wanted. It truly is a custom appliance catered to individual needs.

Why should I choose Invisalign?

There are so many advantages of Invisalign, it’s hard to know where to start. For one, Invisalign aligners are much more discreet than metal braces, meaning you (or your kids) will likely be less self-conscious about wearing them. With traditional braces, there’s also an endless list of foods to avoid — but Invisalign aligners are removable, so you’re free to enjoy all your favorites without restrictions. Lastly, your aligners are made from soft plastic and measured specifically for teeth. Doesn’t that sound a lot more comfortable than sharp brackets and breakable elastics?

Who is Invisalign for?

Invisalign is the ideal teeth straightening treatment for people of all ages who want a (nearly) invisible way to improve their smile. The process is discreet, easy and effective for simple and complex issues, all while causing minimal interruption to your life.

How long does the process take?

No two sets of teeth are alike and neither are any two Invisalign treatment plans. The length of treatment will depend on your unique situation. Each set of aligners is meant to be worn for a week each. Some treatment plans can be as little as 6 months, but on average treatment plans will take between 12 and 18 months.

How often do I have to wear my aligners?

To get the most out of your Invisalign treatment, your aligners should only be removed to eat, drink, brush and floss.

Does Invisalign hurt?

Invisalign may cause some discomfort, depending on how much your teeth have to move to achieve your optimal smile. Pain will usually subside with 24-48 hours, once your teeth have adjusted to your latest aligner. Taking Ibuprofen can help to alleviate discomfort.

How often do I have to visit my Invisalign orthodontist?

You can expect to see your Invisalign dentist every four to six weeks. These visits are a chance to assess your progress and make sure your treatment is on track.

How much does Invisalign cost?

Invisalign costs the same as braces. The cost will depend on your specific treatment plan and how many aligners you need.

Does my insurance cover Invisalign?

Fortunately, many dental insurance plans cover Invisalign in the same way as braces, either by paying for a percentage or dollar amount. You may also have the option to use pre-tax dollars towards your treatment. Check with your provider for more information on insurance coverage for Invisalign.

How do I clean and care for my aligner?

When it comes to cleaning your Invisalign aligners, you have two options: the Invisalign Cleaning System, available from your orthodontist, or simply a toothbrush and toothpaste. Certain foods (like blueberries and tomato sauce) can stain your aligners, so be sure to brush your teeth after every meal. To prevent damage to your aligners, avoid washing with hot water.

What do I do if I lose or break my Invisalign aligner?

It happens. If you lose or break one of your aligners, don’t stress. Contact your Invisalign dentist immediately and they can recommend the best course of action. This may mean wearing one of your previous aligners or your next set while you wait for a replacement to arrive. Invisalign aligners are considered a prescription, so you must order all replacements through your orthodontist.

I’ve finished my Invisalign treatment — what’s next?

Once your Invisalign treatment is completed, it may be tempting to show off your new smile, free from any plastic. But with any orthodontic treatment, it’s best to wear a retainer afterwards to make sure your teeth don’t revert to their old positioning. Talk to your Invisalign orthodontist about post-treatment retainer options.