Invisalign Explained

We have the answers to the questions our Tulsa and Claremore, OK Invisalign patients ask us the most. For even more details, schedule your free consultation with Dr. Patel online or by calling us at (918) 749-8817 (Tulsa) or (918) 342-1240 (Claremore).

Q: How does Invisalign work?

A: Dr. Patel plans out your tooth movements on a 3D model of your mouth and Invisalign creates a series of clear, removable aligners based on his specifications. Similar to brackets and arch wires, the aligners exert controlled force to shift the teeth. The principal difference is that Invisalign not only controls force but also controls the timing of the force application. At each stage, only certain teeth are allowed to move and these movements are determined by Dr. Patel’s treatment plan. This results in an efficient force delivery system. As you make your way through each set of aligners, your new smile takes shape bit by bit.

Q: What do the aligners look like?

A: The aligners are nearly invisible and look similar to clear, tooth-whitening trays. However, they’re custom-made for a perfect fit and maximum precision when shifting the teeth into place. Some orthodontists have referred to them as “contact lenses for teeth.”

Q: How often do I need to wear my aligners?

A: We recommend wearing your aligners for about 22 per days. You can take them out to eat and brush and floss your teeth.

Q: Does Invisalign hurt?

A: No. Invisalign doesn’t hurt but when you first wear a new set of aligners, your teeth might be sensitive for a day or two. That just means it’s working.

Q: Does insurance cover Invisalign?

A: Because medical benefits differ significantly from policy to policy, you should review your coverage. However, if orthodontic treatment is covered by your dental plan, Invisalign should be covered to the same extent as conventional braces. At your first appointment, let us know your insurance information and we’ll help you determine your coverage and even file claims on your behalf.

Q: How long does Invisalign treatment last?

A: Each patient is unique and the length of your Invisalign treatment will depend on how complex your case is, how well you follow our instructions for wearing your aligners and how your teeth respond to the force exerted by the aligners. Dr. Patel will be able to let you know how long your treatment will last at your free consultation. For many patients, it’s comparable to the duration of braces treatment.

Q: How do I clean my aligners?

A: To keep your aligners fresh and clean, simply brush them with a toothbrush and toothpaste and then rinse them with lukewarm water.

Q: Can I smoke while wearing Invisalign aligners?

A: Hey, Dr. Patel is a doctor, so you know we have to say that you shouldn’t smoke at all. Aside from the health risks, smoking while wearing your aligners will cause them to stain, which defeats the purpose of invisible orthodontic treatment.

Q: Do I have to wear a retainer when I’m finished Invisalign treatment?

A: Yes. The only way to maintain your results for life is to wear a retainer. Without one, the teeth have a tendency to shift back to their old places when treatment is complete. Eventually, you’ll be able to transition to just wearing it at night though.

Q: Does Invisalign really work?

A: Of course! In both clinical research and orthodontic and dental practices nationwide, Invisalign has been proven effective at straightening teeth.

Q: What are the aligners made of?

A: Invisalign aligners are made of clear, strong, BPA-free, medical-grade plastic that’s virtually invisible when worn.

Q: Does Invisalign have food restrictions?

A: No. Since the aligners are removable and you’ll take them out to eat, there are no food restrictions.

Q: How much does Invisalign cost?

A: As with other types of orthodontic treatment, the cost of Invisalign will depend on the complexity of your case and how many aligners you need. Schedule a free consultation with Dr. Patel online or by calling us at (918) 749-8817 (Tulsa) or (918) 342-1240 (Claremore). Once he examines your mouth, he’ll be able to tell you what the cost is. We don’t think finances should stand in the way of getting a beautiful smile. We’ll work with you to ensure treatment fits your budget and we have flexible payment options, including affordable monthly payments, low down payments and 0% interest. We also accept most insurance.

Q: How often do I need to visit Dr. Patel during Invisalign treatment?

A: Most patients come in for regular appointments every six to eight weeks so we can check on their progress. These visits are quick and no adjustments are necessary.

Q: Can I chew gum with Invisalign?

A: You can chew gum if you take out your aligners. Keep in mind, you’ll want to wear your aligners for about 22 hours per day, so don’t take them out for too long.

Q: What is the minimum age of a patient that a doctor can treat with Invisalign?

A: Invisalign can treat the vast majority of patients with fully-erupted molars. However, Invisalign Teen is designed for younger mouths and has eruption tabs to accommodate developing teeth, so even children and teenagers can achieve excellent results with the treatment.

Q: How do I know if I’m a candidate for Invisalign?

A: Book a free consultation with Dr. Patel online or by calling our office at (918) 749-8817 (Tulsa) or (918) 342-1240 (Claremore). After evaluating your bite, he’ll be able to determine if Invisalign or Invisalign Teen is the right treatment for your smile needs.

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