Your teenager will face a lot of difficulties as they enter middle and high school, and having crooked teeth will add to them. Braces are an option, but may not be one your child wants because food will get stuck and be visible. Invisalign is another option that you want to check into, and here are just a few things to keep in mind.
What Is Invisalign?
The first question that may come to mind is likely going to be what is Invisalign? This new device is like a combination of a retainer and braces. They are custom made devices that are clear and removable. Every couple of weeks, your child will get a new set and gradually the aligners will shift the teeth into the desired position.
Is It Effective?
Invisalign, unlike braces, can be changed out either weekly or biweekly depending on treatment plan. However, they are just as effective as braces in treating both mild problems to severe alignment issues. You will definitely want to consult an orthodontist to make sure that your child is a good candidate, but the chances are high. In addition, they are safer than braces because your child can remove them while they play sports, practice instruments, or eat a meal. This makes them almost more effective than braces if your child is active in extracurricular activities.
How Long Is the Treatment?
The treatment is varied in time based on the severity of your child's teeth alignment. However, many children find they are wearing the aligners roughly the same amount of time as braces, maybe shorter. The orthodontist should give you a good idea of the estimated time of treatment at your first appointment. They will use your dental records and new x-rays of your bone structure to have a better idea of what treatment plan to use.
When Should It Be Worn?
As mentioned above, your child can remove the aligners when they are playing sports, eating a meal, or playing an instrument. It is best, however, to wear them as much as possible or the treatment will take longer. Children who wear the aligners for at least 20 hours a day find they have good results, with 22 hours a day being recommended. Your child will know when it is time to change the aligner because the color will fade on the indicator from blue to clear. This will also let the orthodontist know if your child has been wearing them as required.
Invisalign aligners are an excellent option for children who are active, and most will come with replacements if your child loses one. Talk to your orthodontist to make the best decision for your child, but any reduction in teasing will help your child get through the hardest years without having to worry about appearance or dental problems.