What Are Clear Aligners

What Are Clear Aligners?

Unlike traditional orthodontics that uses metal wires or brackets, clear aligners help guide teeth into their proper position with clear, plastic trays custom-designed for your mouth.

Instead of frequent trips to the orthodontist to get braces tweaked and tightened, users of clear aligners receive a dozen or more sets of trays that are changed out every few weeks. Each successive tray is closer to the ideal alignment. 

Aligners work best in straightening out front teeth

Some problems with teeth are too big for clear aligners to fix. If there is movement that is needed on the back teeth or if the bite needs to have a lot of correction, clear aligners may not be the most effective system to use. People whose teeth have moved since getting braces in the past are often times ideal patients for aligners.

OrthoDirect customers can find out for free if their ideal smile can be achieved with clear aligners. Schedule an appointment at the OrthoDirect office closest to you. 

Visible changes can be seen within three to four months.

Most treatment plans last 6 months to over a year — depending on the patient. To get these results, aligners need to be worn 20 hours a day.
Retainers must be worn for a long time, preferably forever, for the results to stay. After six months, retainers can be worn while sleeping only.

Aligners can be cleaned with regular toothpaste.

It’s important to brush and floss after each meal before putting in the aligners. Any food or sugar can get “trapped” in the aligner and lead to increased chances of poor dental hygiene. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Every case order begins with a free Smile Assessment followed by a remote orthodontic evaluation to determine if you are a candidate. Our invisible aligner system is designed for minor to moderate teeth correction, including space between teeth, crowding, rotations, and some bite correction.

Our dental assistants use a highly accurate 3D intraoral scanner to capture a digital map of your smile, including your teeth and gum lines. This 3D image helps us determine if our aligners are a fit for your smile and allows our lab to work with the doctor overseeing your case in creating your personalized treatment plan.

Fixing crowding or spacing changes your bite. To keep the bite correct, the doctors in our network recommend treating the other arch, too. If you’re correcting crowding in one arch, you have to widen the shape of the opposing teeth to match or the bite can be affected. The same principal is true for correcting spacing in your teeth. As gaps are closed, the shape of the arch changes. The arches need to be symmetrical to ensure a good bite, so the bottom teeth may need to be adjusted, even if you’re primarily concerned with a gap in only one arch. Not only can ignoring the opposing arch cause issues with the bite, it can also result in dental relapse.