Invisalign® no longer caters exclusively to adults. At Stellar Family Orthodontics in Mukilteo and Mill Creek, Washington, Dr. Chad Carver sees numerous teen patients who are interested in straightening their teeth with Invisalign.
In the past, orthodontists have greatly favored conventional braces for adolescents and teens, reserving Invisalign clear aligners for adult patients. That’s because the patented Invisalign technology used to be more effective on adult smiles.
Fortunately, that’s no longer the case. Invisalign® Teen is a new clear aligners system designed specifically with teens in mind. Now teens can look forward to straight teeth without the bulk and discomfort of metal or ceramic braces.
But before you decide on the right treatment for your teen, let’s talk about the pros and cons of Invisalign Teen.
What is Invisalign Teen?
Invisalign is an orthodontic system that uses clear aligners to straighten teeth and correct common bite problems, such as an overbite, underbite, or crossbite. Made with BPA-free plastic, Invisalign clear aligners are comfortable, removable, and completely translucent. Others may not even be able to tell when you’re wearing them.
Just like the classic clear aligners, Invisalign Teen involves taking a series of digital impressions with the iTero® oral scanner to build a mold of your child’s mouth. Every step of Invisalign uses patented digital technology, so your teen never has to worry about messy molds or impressions.
Once Dr. Carver uploads your teen’s digital impressions into the Invisalign software, he can create a personalized treatment plan. Over the course of 6-18 months, your teen will receive a new set of clear aligners about once every two weeks. They must wear these removable aligners for 22 hours a day, taking them out to eat, brush, and floss.
What are the pros of Invisalign Teen?
Invisalign offers many important benefits for young adults, such as:
Conventional braces have metal brackets and wires that can irritate the inside of your teen’s cheeks. They can even cause small, painful canker sores and cuts. Invisalign, on the other hand, is made of a smooth plastic material that feels comfortable and pain-free.
Clear aligners are discreet.
Perhaps the most notable benefit of Invisalign Teen is that it’s discreet. Not only are clear aligners translucent, they’re also molded to the exact shape of your teen’s teeth. As a result, they can laugh, smile, and speak with confidence.
There are no major food restrictions.
Because metal and ceramic braces are fixed to your teen’s teeth, there are many foods they have to avoid to prevent cavities. Chewy caramels, popcorn, hard candies, and even tough pizza crust are just a few foods that can damage conventional braces.
Because Invisalign is removable, your teen can eat the foods they love and brush and floss their teeth after each meal to protect their oral health.
There are fewer appointments.
Clear aligners don’t require regular adjustments like braces do. Since Invisalign is a completely digital process, Dr. Carver can even make adjustments to your teen’s treatment plan without an in-person appointment. Patients typically only need to come in every 6-8 weeks for checkup visits.
Oral hygiene is easy to maintain.
With Invisalign Teen, your teen can care for their teeth as they normally would. They should remove their clear aligners to brush and floss after every meal to avoid cavities and gum disease.
What are the cons of Invisalign Teen?
While there aren’t many cons to Invisalign Teen, there are a few things to consider before investing in clear aligners for your teen:
Clear aligners are easy to lose.
If your teen is prone to misplacing important items, Invisalign clear aligners may prove to be a challenge for them. While Invisalign can be cost-effective for many families, expenses add up if your teen repeatedly loses their aligners.
Before making a decision on Invisalign, try having an honest conversation with your teen about the responsibilities that come with investing in Invisalign.
Invisalign is a commitment.
Success with Invisalign is dependent on your teen’s compliance with the treatment. Unlike traditional braces, which are fixed to your teen’s teeth, clear aligners can be removed at any time. Invisalign must be worn for at least 22 hours a day to produce visible, lasting results. If your teen often removes their aligners and forgets to put them back in, their treatment may take longer than expected.
Still have questions about Invisalign? Our team is here to help! Call Stellar Family Orthodontics or schedule a free consultation online today to learn more!