How Orthodontic Work Helps the Smile

Three young people smiling

If you have recently learned that you require orthodontic work, you might be disappointed. Hopefully, you will be able to choose what kind of appliance you want, such as Invisalign. Regardless of which you end up with, you should know that it will significantly benefit your smile.

Straightening the teeth does more than just perfect the look of the smile. Teeth that are overlapping can create spaces for bacteria and plaque to build up, as these can be difficult areas for a tooth brush to reach. This can lead to cavities and infections.

Orthodontic treatments can also correct a poorly aligned bite, such as a crossbite, underbite, overbites, and open bites. These can all negatively affect the jaw, causing pain, as well as difficulty chewing and speaking. Treatment with Invisalign, braces, or a type of braces can not only prevent or resolve such issues, and even change the shape of the face.

Your orthodontic treatment may be part of a larger goal – a complete smile makeover. Our smile makeover dentist will work with you to decide what treatments and procedures are best to perfect your smile. Orthodontics may be just one treatment, along with dental bonding, veneers, and whatever else you may need.

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Is Invisalign Retainer Necessary?

smiling girl with tooth tray

After any orthodontic treatment, you will need to wear a retainer. Orthodontic treatment works by using pressure to move teeth through the bone. During the process, the connective tissues and bones adjust and remodel around the tooth roots. After active treatment, the retainer prevents the teeth from shifting back towards their previous positions.

The Invisalign retainer looks much like the Invisalign aligners. The retainer will fit close to the way the final aligner in the series did. You will wear it between 12 and 22 hours a day initially. This recommendation may vary based on your age, the complexity of your case and specifics of your treatment plan. As with the aligners, you can remove your retainer for meals, snacks and dental hygiene purposes. After a certain number of months, you will typically be able to reduce the amount of time you wear your retainer to nighttime-only.

At a certain point, you will be able to further decrease your retainer wear. However, most people will need to continue wearing their retainers at least once or a few times a week for the rest of their lives. This is because the natural biting, chewing and other oral functions of the teeth apply force to the teeth, and these forces could cause teeth to shift even long after orthodontic treatment has ended. Call our orthodontists today to find out more about orthodontic treatment or to schedule your appointment with our team.