divine.ca Puts Invisalign to the Testby Caroline Elie
published March 25, 2013
Our experience with clear braces
For months, we’ve been dying to tell you about the latest trend in orthodontics. Invisalign is all the rage with celebrities, and it’s really got people talking. You‘re not sure what we’re talking about? That might be because you didn’t notice it, even though it was probably there, right before your eyes. Trust us: this popular treatment is worth looking into and, since we’ve already tried it, we’d like to share with you our impressions.
Gone are the days when having straight teeth means filling your mouth with so many wires that you are embarrassed to smile! Judging from all the teeth whitening products on the market, a perfect smile is what people want. Well, it’s no longer hard to get! This new treatment even lets you join the club without anyone being the wiser. How? Clear braces. “Aesthetically speaking, it’s the way to go. What’s more, it won’t give you mouth ulcers and you can still floss, which is not something you can do when wearing traditional braces,” says Dr. Maxime Champagne, a licensed Invisalign specialist. Of course, for extreme cases, Invisalign may not be the answer. Nevertheless, the process is extensive and can include up to 30 aligners, which equates to over a year and a half of treatment.
So how does it work? It all starts with a consultation with your dental practitioner, who will take an impression of your teeth to send to the parent company. The latter will do an assessment according to the number of aligners (i.e. clear bite plates) to prescribe, and will send everything to your dentist. Not sure you want to see this through? You can always pay for the consultation and decide later. Once you have the results, you’ll know the number of aligners you’ll need, and therefore how long the treatment will take and cost. The longer the treatment, the more expensive it will be. Theoretically, it costs less than traditional braces, but don’t expect to pay less than $3,000. The other extreme can get to around $8,000.*
Invisalign aligners move your teeth in small increments. As you wear them—22 hours a day—your teeth will gradually shift into place. Every two weeks, you’ll get a new appliance until your teeth are perfectly straight. It’s the same idea as braces, but much easier to live with. (Trust us!) All you have to do is remove the aligner during meals and brush your teeth thoroughly before putting it back on. That’s it! Most people won’t notice when you’re wearing an aligner; it is really, really subtle. “You may need little clasps to hold the aligner in position,” Dr. Champagne tells us. Don’t fret: the clasps are the same colour as your teeth so they too are virtually invisible. And did we experience any pain? Barely. Each time you get a new aligner, it feels like your teeth are being squeezed, but we definitely didn’t experience any of the minor headaches we were warned about!
Is Invisalign for me?
Just about anyone can use this kind of treatment, unless you’re case is particularly severe. “You can’t have any cavities and you must have all your adult teeth. Usually, we do a cleaning before starting the treatment and then we’re good to go,” says Dr. Champagne. There are also a few hidden advantages: you can bleach your teeth while wearing the aligners, and you can even camouflage a missing tooth by colouring the mould.
Are you ready?
Even though ours was a minor case, we thoroughly loved the experience, especially the results. After all, a smile is for life. “Find out if the dental wire fitted behind your teeth to hold the aligner in place, the follow‑up appointments, or anything else is included in the price. You should also check whether your insurance plan covers orthodontic work to help cover the total costs,” Dr. Champagne suggests. Forget everything you heard: investing in your smile can be easy and invisible too!
Thanks to Dr. Maxime Champagne of Centre Dentaire Martine Masson (in Boucherville, Quebec) for his valuable expertise.
*For information purposes only.