What to Expect With Clear Aligners Treatment
How Does Clear Aligners Work?
Clear aligners are almost invisible. Metal-free clear aligners are made from BPA-free clear plastic, and are custom made for your teeth. Our dentist in Victoria (Pacifica Dental) will use x-rays, pictures, and impressions to create a precise image of your teeth and to configure your aligner trays accordingly.
Every two weeks, you will receive a new set of aligners that slowly move your teeth towards their ideal positions. As opposed to metal braces that are adhered to your teeth, the clear aligners process allows you to take the clear aligners off whenever you want. However, if you want optimal results, it’s best when you wear the clear aligners for 20-22 hours every day. Because it is a new piece of hardware in your mouth you may encounter some pain and you may need to spend a few days adjusting to speaking.
What happens at your first visit / consultation?
While clear aligners can be useful in treating gaps, under and over bites, crowding and other issues, it is not ideal for every case. More severe cases of malocclusion would still require more traditional treatments like metal braces. By visiting our dentist in Victoria, your consultation will really help determine if clear aligners is right for you or if you need to revert to more traditional methods.
At your visit, ask all the questions you need such as:
- How will you start my treatment plan?
- How long will my treatment last?
- How much does clear aligners cost?
- Do you take payment installments, or do I have to pay all at once?
- Do you accept insurance?
- Is financing available?
How long do you have to wear the aligners?
The course of your treatment will be determined based on years of scientific research and the determination of the complexities that your case presents. Some studies suggest that while under orthodontic treatment, teeth move at approximately 1mm per month, but of course, every person is different, and this rate will vary.
Tooth movement is influenced by:
- whether you’re still growing (faster) or whether you’ve finished growing (slower)
- how well you adhere to the daily recommended aligner “wearing time”.
What if you lose an aligner?
If you lose an aligner, give us a call. Your clear aligners treatment plan is digitized so that any aligner can be replaced quickly. We’ll help you ensure you stay on track with your care.
How do you clean the aligners?
- Run under cool water and brush gently with your toothbrush and toothpaste. There is also an aligner cleaner you can purchase. Never use hot water as it can change the shape of your aligners. Always ensure your aligners are clean before you place them in your mouth to protect your smile and your overall health.
- Aligners will stain if you put them in your mouth before thoroughly cleaning your teeth after eating high-staining foods like blueberries and tomato sauce or if you wear them while drinking red wine. Before you put your aligners in your mouth, ensure your teeth are clean.
How much does clear aligners cost?
Traditional orthodontic treatment like braces can be expensive procedures, but clear aligners is slightly more expensive. The average cost ranges between $3,500 and $8,000. The large variance in price is determined by how complex your bite is, the duration of your treatment, and your coverage options from your benefits / insurance provider (if applicable). Our dentist in Victoria at Pacifica Dental will be able to give you a more accurate cost once we understand your own unique needs.
What to expect after treatment?
The technology that is used to develop these aligners is quite robust, meaning you’ll be able to see what your teeth will look like after your treatment plan is complete. That way there are no surprises or false expectations of what clear aligners can do to help your smile. Something to keep in mind is that with orthodontic procedures, there’s always a risk of your teeth reverting to their original position over time. Talk to our dentist in Victoria to find out if a retainer is important in your treatment and make sure to wear your retainer as directed to maintain your new perfect smile.