Invisalign® – The braces that nobody sees
The alternative to the classic braces, the Invisalign® therapy, which originated in the USA, has now also been available here for a few years. For adults in particular, there is now finally a non-invasive way of correcting a wide range of malocclusions in a simple and everyday way.
Approximately from the 11. The individually made splints, which are called aligners, can be used from the age of 18. The areas of application of these are manifold.
Thus, crowding of the anterior teeth with rotated or interlocked teeth, gaps between the teeth due to too small, missing or migrated teeth, a crossbite or, for example, an underbite can be treated with these splints (aligners).
How it is done?
A 3D scanner is used to create an accurate virtual impression of the patient’s teeth. The computer program is now able to use the CAD/CAM process to determine the ideal condition of the tooth position and to perfect it by means of the patient’s wishes.
If the goal is clearly defined, the Invisalign® treatment plan (called ClinCheck) determines the intermediate steps and informs if any measures have to be taken before starting the treatment. Very severe malocclusions of the teeth may require the removal of one or more teeth.
Once all the details of the treatment have been discussed and the patient is satisfied with the final virtual result of the Invisalign® treatment plan, the individual customized clear plastic aligners are produced.
The wearing time of a splint is ideally 22 hours per day. During this time, the teeth are gently brought into the desired position by continuous pressure on the roots of the teeth. The teeth can be moved by 0.2 mm or rotated by 1° by means of a splint worn for an average of 2 weeks.
How long the treatment with Invisalign® lasts and how many trays are needed depends entirely on the severity of the malocclusion and individual parameters. As a guideline, a treatment period of 6 – 18 months can be mentioned, which can be significantly shorter than with a conventional orthodontic treatment.
What are the advantages of Invisalign® compared to conventional braces??
The biggest advantages of Invisalign® therapy in everyday life are certainly the points of invisibility and hygiene. Due to the use of a transparent plastic, the aligners can only be seen when looking very closely, which can be very important, especially for adults in professional life and teenagers.
Another plus point is the easy removal of the aligners. For eating, oral hygiene and kissing, the aligners should be removed from the mouth, which can be done with a simple, quick operation.
Also the high wearing comfort makes the transparent splints clearly the trump card.
What is the other side of the coin??
Probably the biggest problem with Invisalign® treatment is that the treatment costs are not covered by public health insurances. Orthodontic treatment for adults is only covered if there is a special medically necessary degree of severity.
Private health insurances also usually cover the costs for adults only in case of severe medical indication.
Another hurdle could be the initial lisping until the patient gets used to wearing the trays. Sometimes superficial discoloration of the teeth can also be disturbing.
Author: Dr. Christine Voslamber
Dr. Christine Voslamber is a specialist in orthodontics and owner of the Voslamber practice for orthodontics (https://kieferorthopaede-in-berlin).de) in Berlin-Wilmersdorf.
Her treatment specialties include working with the highly innovative Invisalign® invisible braces, sleep apnea and snoring therapy using lower jaw splints, and aesthetic orthodontics at any age.