Orthodontic Treatment with Clear Aligners

“Invisible braces” are here. Orthodontists call them “clear aligners.” Consumers may call them “Invisalign” (a brand name that’s become a generic term, like Kleenex, even though several companies make clear aligners). Aligners are one of many technological advancements that have made orthodontic treatment less conspicuous, and one of many “appliances” orthodontists use to move teeth and align jaws to create a healthy, beautiful smile.

How Aligners Work

Like traditional braces, aligners are designed to move teeth a little at a time. Before treatment begins, the orthodontist will examine the patient, and take diagnostic records including x-rays, photographs, and impressions or digital scans of the teeth. From that information, the orthodontist can arrive at a diagnosis, and then work within the aligner software to design your smile and plan the treatment process – which tooth moves where, and in what order – guiding teeth into healthy positions. Remember, this is all of the teeth – not just the few that are seen when someone smiles. The goal is a healthy “bite” – top and bottom teeth that fit together properly. Moving teeth is a complex biological process and needs start-to-finish supervision by an orthodontist who is a member of the American Association of Orthodontists (AAO). Most people see their orthodontist for a check-up about every six-to-ten weeks. With the end goal in mind, a series of plastic aligners are created using the patient’s initial impressions or digital scans as the starting point. The aligners are plastic replicas of your teeth. Wearing them puts gentle pressure on the teeth, ever-so-slightly repositioning them. It is recommended aligners be worn 22 hours a day, or as prescribed by the orthodontist. Each set of aligners is worn for a week or two before going to the next set. Over time, teeth reach their ideal places, according to the orthodontist’s plan. The total number of aligners will vary by the needs of each patient.  As with traditional braces, patients will need to wear retainers after their teeth reach their new positions.

Pros and Cons of Aligners

Besides being next-to-invisible, many patients appreciate that aligners are removable. Take them out to eat, to brush and floss, or for short periods for work or social situations. Aligners may not be the right “appliance” to correct every kind of orthodontic problem. Braces may be necessary for certain kinds of corrections. With clear aligners, tooth-colored attachments will be placed on the teeth to help the aligners move the teeth. These attachments are removed once treatment is complete. Care needs to be taken regarding drinks when aligners are in, and anything but tap water should be avoided. Liquid can seep into the aligners, and it stays there, in contact with the teeth, until aligners are removed. This can lead to staining of the aligner and the teeth, and if the liquid contains sugar and/or acid, as found in regular and diet soda pop, cavities can develop. So avoid soda pop, along with flavored water, fruit drinks, sports drinks and energy drinks. Even some bottled water can be acidic! If you drink something sugary or acidic (a pH below 7.0), be sure to brush thoroughly before putting your aligners back in. And use fluoride toothpaste – it strengthens teeth. Because aligners are removable, patients might be tempted to remove them if they experience some discomfort. Aligners can’t work unless they are in the mouth! They can be lost or misplaced when out of the mouth. Make it a habit to slip aligners into their case when they come out of the mouth. Do not place aligners in napkins, in a pocket or a purse. Also keep aligners out of the reach of pets. If you should lose or damage an aligner, contact your orthodontist immediately for advice on next steps.

Are Clear Aligners Right for Me?

The best way to answer that question is to consult an orthodontist who is a member of the American Association of Orthodontists (AAO). Because of orthodontists’ extensive education and familiarity with the many types of “appliances” (devices used to move teeth/align jaws) available, they can knowledgeably suggest what is right for you, based on your treatment goals and lifestyle needs. Many AAO orthodontists offer complimentary or low-cost initial consultations, as well as a variety of affordable payment plans. Trust the professional who is dedicated to creating your healthy, beautiful smile: an AAO orthodontist. The American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) is open exclusively to orthodontists – only orthodontists are admitted for membership. The only doctors who can call themselves “orthodontists” have graduated from dental school and then successfully completed the additional two-to-three years of education in an accredited orthodontic residency program. When you choose an AAO orthodontist for orthodontic treatment, you can be assured that you have selected a specialist orthodontist, an expert in orthodontics and dentofacial orthopedics who possesses the skills and experience to give you your best smile. Locate AAO orthodontists through Find an Orthodontist at aaoinfo.org.
http://www.drtoddsmiles.com/schedule-appointment/

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Retainer doesn’t fit?

You have waited a long time to get your braces removed, but your orthodontic treatment isn't finished yet!

Right after your braces come off, orthodontic patients will receive their retainers.  Sometimes after patients have their braces off we may get a few calls asking why their retainer no longer fits. One reason why this may occur is because something may have happened to distort the shape of the retainer. Clear/plastic retainers can be affected by hot liquids as the heat can warp them.  If they distort just a tiny bit, it can affect how your retainer fits in your mouth.  Traditional wire and acrylic retainers can become distorted by putting the retainer in your mouth incorrectly or stepping or sitting on it.  Brookfield ortodontics, ortodontists, braces,brookfield

Unfortunately, the main reason we see a retainer not fitting is because the retainer is not being warn according to the details given to patients when they receive them.

Keep in mind, that a retainer helps keep your teeth in place after the use of braces.  In order for your teeth to straighten, they will loosen in the process along with the ligaments that hold them in place.  It is natural for the ligaments to want to pull your teeth back to their original position.  By using a retainer, it allows your teeth to tighten back up with the ligaments in the new position. Patients may notice that if they don't wear their retainer, their teeth can drift back to where they were before.  Your orthodontist will recommend the amount of time needed to wear the retainer as everyone's teeth respond differently to treatment. If you happen to lose your retainer, it is very important that you contact your orthodontist's office as soon as possible to be fit for a new retainer.  The longer you wait, the better chance of your teeth drifting back into their old positions.  

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Braces and Orthodontists in Brookfield Wi – Dr Todd Connell Orthodontics

Everyone Leaves With Simply Spectacular Smiles.

At Dr. Todd Connell Orthodontics, each patient's treatment plan is uniquely their own.

 

Metal or Traditional, Braces

This is the most common type of braces. Today’s metal braces are smaller, more comfortable and more attractive than they were only a few years ago. The reason most patients choose metal braces is because they’re most efficient and effective at moving teeth. You can customize your braces with colored bands and change the look of your braces with each visit.

Ceramic Braces

Ceramic braces are made of translucent material and are designed to be less noticeable. This option is most popular with adult patients, due to the cosmetic appeal. They have some small disadvantages, however. Ceramic brackets are a little more fragile than metal brackets, and the elastic ties can become discolored between visits, especially if you drink a lot of coffee, tea or red wine, or if you smoke.

With either of these options, your appointments can be monthly or every other month with excellent brushing and dental care.

When you first meet Dr. Connell, you’ll appreciate his passion for life, learning, and the arts. His dedication to the health and happiness of others is clear in the way he works with patients.

Dr Connell’s commitment to lifelong learning shines through in the work he does with dental students. He has served as an adjunct associate professor at Marquette University’s highly regarded Dental School for more than 20 years and is active in several study clubs. His recommendations are based on a thorough understanding of the peer reviewed scientific literature. He has authored published editorials in the Journal of the American Dental Association(JADA) and the American Journal of Orthodontics & Dentofacial Orthopedics(AJODO) voicing concerns regarding over treatment.

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