If you’re considering Invisalign to straighten your teeth, improve your smile, or to relieve TMJ symptoms it’s natural to wonder how the process works and how long it takes. Here's what you need to know about using Invisalign to straighten your teeth, correct your bite, and gain relief from TMJ.
How Invisalign Works
Invisalign is an orthodontic treatment option that uses a series of hard plastic aligners to correct teeth alignment over a set period. Each aligner is personalized and made to fit the person's mouth while gradually correcting the teeth's positioning. This plastic is clear and nearly invisible – hence the name Invisalign.
Invisalign is capable of correcting most mild to moderate bite problems, including overbite, underbite, and crossbite. As your teeth gradually move into their proper positions, it also lowers the amount of stress on the jaw muscles, significantly reducing uncomfortable TMJ symptoms.
How Invisalign Alleviates Jaw Pain and TMJ
As Invisalign repositions the back and front teeth, it allows the jaw muscles, including the buccinators and massetors, to stretch back into proper position. When the back and front bite is out of position it causes these muscles to become tense and squeeze the nerves that run through them. By wearing the Invisalign aligners to fix your bite, muscle tension in the jaw is relieved as muscle memory is retrained to not clench all day long. This brings relief to painful TMJ symptoms.
Average Invisalign Treatment Time
At Cosmetic & Reconstructive Dentistry in Fairfield, CT, the average Invisalign treatment time is between 5 to 8 months, but there are always exceptions. Some patients may achieve results in even less time, particularly if they had braces as a teen and simply want to refine their smiles after an orthodontic relapse; other patients may have complex cases that take more than 8 months to treat.
Your Individual Orthodontic Case
Your orthodontic case—meaning the severity of your teeth crowding, spacing, and bite issues—determines how many aligners you need. Patients with only minor orthodontic issues may only need a few sets of aligners, while patients with severe bite issues will require more. The more aligners you need, the longer your treatment will take.
Predictability is one of the key advantages of Invisalign over traditional braces. When you come in for your complimentary consultation with Dr. Donald Miller, he'll be able to determine how many aligners you'll need to straighten your teeth through the use of an intraoral scanner, this scan provides the ability to predict the length of your total treatment.
Compliance with Invisalign Treatment
While Dr. Miller can estimate the length of your Invisalign treatment, your commitment and compliance with Invisalign is the key to a successful smile transformation.
Invisalign recommends wearing aligners between 20 to 22 hours per day, except when you are drinking anything other than water, eating, brushing your teeth, or flossing. Invisalign aligners only work when you wear them, unlike traditional braces which are permanently attached to your teeth and work around the clock. By wearing your aligners as much as possible, you can ensure that your treatment is on the right track
If you take your aligners out frequently, your treatment may take longer. Fortunately, because Invisalign aligners are clear, comfortable, and convenient, most of our patients have no trouble wearing them as directed.
Learn More About Invisalign
Regardless of your age or stage in life, now presents the perfect time to consider Invisalign orthodontic treatment. My team welcomes the opportunity to work with you and your family to care for your overall dental health and to straighten your smile while relieving TMJ discomfort. Please consider scheduling a complimentary consultation with Dr. Donald Miller of Cosmetic & Reconstructive Dentistry in Fairfield, CT today. Please call 203-255-6878 or click here to schedule an appointment.
Dr. Donald Miller specializes in general, family and cosmetic dentistry and is an active member of the Fairfield, CT community. He has practiced dentistry in Fairfield for over 25 years. Get to know Dr. Miller better by visiting our website. You can also read Google Reviews submitted by patients for a personal recommendation.