You may have heard of Invisalign® but perhaps you do not quite understand what makes it stand out from traditional braces. Each straightening tool uses different methods to move teeth into more aesthetically pleasing positions.The goal of traditional braces is to correct crooked teeth and jaw or bite issues. Many dental patients seek this corrective…
The Difference Between Invisalign and Other Clear Aligners
Clear aligner devices, like Invisalign, are often a preferable tooth alignment solution for many dental patients. Features like removability and transparency make them better apparatuses for many people to use. Today, there are many clear aligner options available to patients all over the world. Each kind of clear aligner offers many benefits over using traditional metal braces thanks to their unique features.
All clear aligners work virtually the same way in that they help move and align teeth to create a better-looking and functioning mouth and smile. The Invisalign brand in particular, though, has unique qualities and technologies that make it one of the more preferable and dependable options for many dentists today. See below to understand more about the various clear aligner options available and what makes one of them stand out from the rest.
What kinds of clear aligners exist today?
There are many clear alignment device options available. Some dentists choose to form partnerships with specific brands and only offer those brands at their location. Other brands work directly with and ship directly to the customer rather than a physical dental professional. Manufacturers also continue to create new clear aligner options all the time.
The original invention
The original clear aligner brand that revolutionized the dental industry is called Invisalign. With the invention of these invisible aligner trays, traditional metal braces ceased to be the only option to straighten misaligned teeth. Thanks to the invention of these practically invisible plastic braces, now people could straighten their teeth without having to endure the inconveniences and displeasure that many feel with a mouth full of metal.
Invisalign treatment and a few other dentist-applied brands require in-person professional dental consultation, examination, and implementation. These kinds of clear aligner treatments usually require an initial dental consultation consisting of:
- 3D scans
- Bite impressions
- Thorough physical examinations
- Detailed treatment discussions
Next, manufacturers design a series of personalized clear aligning trays. Depending on the severity and number of alignments needed, some treatments take over a year and some only require a few months.
In contrast, mail-order clear alignment treatments generally take about six to 12 months to complete. Again, the amount of time the treatment takes is different for every situation. The main difference between these aligners and the dentist-applied ones is that these can be directly shipped to you and do not require any physical dental visits. Many of the more popular home-based options include consistent remote access to trained dental professionals. These aligners usually require you to perform the initial impressions or take pictures yourself and attend regular virtual checkups instead of in-person ones.
What separates Invisalign from the other brands?
Invisalign is set apart from the other clear aligner options mainly through the special technologies it employs.
iTero element scanner
The iTero element scanner allows your dentist to show you a 3D image of your mouth in a matter of minutes. Your doctor can also quickly show you how the aligners and additional potential attachments might make corrections to your teeth and your bite over time. Throughout the process, your dentist can use the scanner to show you signs of your progress as well. Finally, using the scanner, your dentist can give you a physical representation of your new smile's beautiful potential before you even start the treatment.
ClinCheck software is the tool that lets your dentist shape your smile precisely as you go through the treatment. This 3D interactive visual interface helps determine exactly what forces are needed and where they need to be applied for each tooth to align correctly to achieve the optimal end result. It also helps cut down on the overall time that the treatment takes, thanks to its incredible detail and accuracy.
SmartTrak and SmartForce
Invisalign trays are constructed using SmartTrak material, which is specifically designed for superior alignment. Patients often find that the SmartTrak material makes these aligners simultaneously more comfortable and more durable than other clear aligner trays. The SmartForce attachments are tooth-colored and small but powerful apparatuses that allow this specific brand to conduct more complex mouth manipulations than other clear braces brands can. In addition, SmartForce attachments help make Invisalign an even more formidable opponent of traditional braces.
Clear aligners provide an excellent alternative to traditional braces for many dental patients. There are many options available for both in-office and at-home invisible braces; however, Invisalign, the original clear aligner, continues to stand out from the rest due to its incorporation of multiple innovative technologies. Check with your dentist today to see if clear alignment treatment might work for you.
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