The truth is modern human teeth almost never grow in straight. Anthropologists, archaeologists, and biologists who study ancient humans believe that people actually managed to displace their jaws once the brain grew too large to fit in its cavity. The result was the movement of the jaw out of traditional alignment, which results in crooked teeth, overbites, underbites, and even teeth that cross over each other or become impacted and stuck in the gum.
When this happens, it’s time to call upon a special field of dentistry called orthodontics. In orthodontics, dentists apply special appliances to the teeth, gums, and jaw to shift the alignment of the teeth and move them into place. As you might have guessed, these appliances are called braces.
Many children, teenagers, and adults in the United States need to have some type of orthodontic treatment, and 4.5 million people at any given time are wearing braces. These appliances are made of metal and wires that adhere to the teeth and are tightened over time. They are effective but can be painful, uncomfortable, and make the wearer embarrassed because of how noticeable they are.
For adults who are 16 years of age and older, it is possible to eschew traditional braces in favor of Invisalign®. Invisalign is a different type of braces that uses clear aligners over a period of 6 to 12 months instead of lasting from 12 to 24 months. The clear aligners are difficult to see and can be taken out to brush and floss the teeth underneath, helping maintain regular health and wellness.
Aligners are molded specifically to a patient’s teeth, creating a customized fit. Most people will need to go through 5 to 8 different aligners to create fully straightened and corrected teeth. Invisalign is easy to put in place and can be worn during regular activities like eating without limitations. So, patients don’t need to avoid their favorite foods like popcorn or gummy candy.
To receive Invisalign, you need to make an appointment with a dentist who has been certified in its use. Here at Digital Smiles, we are qualified to treat patients with Invisalign and can help you determine whether or not these clear braces are right for you.