For people who want to straighten their teeth, there are a number of treatment options to choose from.

These include braces, fixed and removable space maintainers, retainers, aligners, and so on. One of the most popular orthodontic devices is Invisalign, which are clear aligners that can be removed when it’s time to eat, brush, and floss.

Now, if you’re interested in clear aligners, you might be wondering what the Invisalign process is like. Here, we’ll talk about the typical Invisalign process timeline for most patients. And we’ll also discuss what happens after you’re done with your last set of aligners.

Top Things to Know About the Invisalign Process

The average length of treatment time for Invisalign clear aligners is a year to 18 months. However, there are factors that might affect how long you need to wear your aligners.

For example, if you have severe teeth crowding, your dentist might recommend another orthodontic treatment to correct this before starting you on Invisalign. How often you wear your aligners can also impact the length of your treatment. You should only take off your aligners when eating, brushing, and flossing, and wear them for at least 20 hours a day.

As for how often you’ll have to change to new aligners, it will depend on your treatment plan. You may need new aligners every week or every other week.

Invisalign Process Time: From Consultation to Your Last Set of Aligners

The whole process always starts with a consultation with an Invisalign provider. If you already have an orthodontist, you can ask him or her if they’re certified to provide Invisalign treatment.

Usually, the initial consultation is free and will give you an idea of the Invisalign process cost, as well as confirm if you’re a good candidate for the treatment.

Next, your dentist will take records for your case, meaning he or she will collect dental impressions, X-rays, photographs, and other data needed to make your aligners. Then, these will be sent to the makers of Invisalign so they can create a treatment simulation.

Before producing your aligners, your dentist has to check the simulation and approve it. If there are modifications, the Invisalign mold process will take a bit longer. Once your dentist gives the okay, though, you only need to wait a couple of weeks before the whole set is shipped to your dentist’s office.

Maintaining Your Smile

After wearing your last set of Invisalign clear aligners, your dentist might recommend a retainer. For some patients, this is a necessary step to make sure the recently aligned teeth don’t shift.

Of course, not every case requires a retainer so it’s best to ask your dentist.

Interested in Learning More About Your Orthodontic Treatment Options?

Now that you know more about the Invisalign process, it’s also a good idea to learn about your other orthodontic treatment options.

For more information on these options, you can check out our other dental articles. You might also want to browse our other sections. We cover a variety of health and medical topics that might interest you.

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