How Invisalign Moves Teeth

How Invisalign Moves Teeth

Invisalign clear aligners are a great option to correct smiles without the drawbacks of traditional braces: but how do they actually work? If you are considering Invisalign as a treatment option for yourself or a family member, find out below! 

First things first: All types of orthodontic treatment work by using force to move teeth into different positions. Traditional braces work by applying force to each individual tooth which allows them to shift independently of each other. The wires and braces help guide the teeth into alignment through the wire, which applies most of the pressure. At the same time, elastics can be used on traditional braces in order to pull the bite into alignment. This helps correct malocclusions such as overbites and underbites. 

Rather than applying force to each individual tooth, Invisalign aligners work by applying force as a whole to the teeth. Each Invisalign treatment plan consists of multiple aligner trays that are designed by your Victoria BC orthodontist to move different teeth at each stage of your treatment. One tray will move your teeth an average of 1/10 of a millimeter, which will help move your teeth into the precisely correct place. Each tray will apply pressure in different areas to move your teeth into the next phase until your smile is fully corrected. 

So how does applying pressure to your teeth cause them to move? The answer is: it’s physics!  While your Invisalign aligners apply force to your teeth, there is an opposite reaction happening within your jawbone. This opposite reaction is known as osteoclastic activity and osteoblastic activity. While osteoclastic activity is the process of breaking down the bone (which leaves room for your teeth to move), osteoblastic activity is the process of building up bone to fill in the gap left by the shifting tooth. This give and take process is how your Invisalign aligners are able to move and shift teeth. 

The interesting thing about osteoclastic activity is that is takes 48-72 hours to begin fully, but only around 4 hours to stop. This means that it is very important to wear your aligners for as long as you can – and preferably for at least 22 hours a day. If you fail to do this, your treatment could be extended and it will take longer for you to achieve your healthy new smile.  Now that you know how Invisalign works to create healthy smiles, are you ready to chat about how it can work for your? Contact us to book your consultation today!

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Talking To Your Teen About Orthodontic Treatment

Talking To Your Teen About Orthodontic Treatment

Braces are a big deal for any preteen or teenager. For many young adults, orthodontic treatment brings fears of looking different, being in pain, or not being able to enjoy the foods that they love. This means that it can be a challenge for parents to broach the subject of orthodontic treatment with their child, even if the treatment can help them achieve a healthy new smile. While many teens will be happy with their new smile once they have it, it can be a tough sell at the beginning. Below are some tips on how you can talk to your preteen or teen about orthodontic treatment without the conversation turning into a disaster:   

Tip #1: Calm their fears

Let’s face it: even if getting braces doesn’t seem like a big deal for you, it is a huge deal for your teen. The physical element of wearing braces can sound scary on its own, and when you add the social stigma of braces it can send a young person into a full blown panic. The key as a parent is to acknowledge your child’s fears as legitimate and keep an open discussion about the treatment. By communicating the need for treatment and the potential options right from the start, your teen will have a better idea of what they might be getting into which can help calm their fears. If you need inspiration for how to approach this discussion, here are some things that you can mention to them:

  • Having braces put on does not hurt. While the actual placing of the brackets and wires is painless, patients may experience some discomfort or soreness following the appointment as their mouth gets used to the new adjustments. Manage expectations by being upfront with your teen about this part of the process. 
  • Braces don’t last forever! Setting up a timeline will help your teen realize that they will not be wearing braces for as long as they originally imagined. Your child’s orthodontist will be happy to provide a rough estimate of how long their treatment should take, which you can then share with your child.
  • They will not be alone. Millions of people in North America wear braces, and it is very common for people in their teenage years. There is a good chance that your child has friends or classmates that either already have braces or will be getting them in the future, so be sure to remind them that they will not stand out due to their orthodontic treatment. 

Tip #2: Focus on the positives 

While getting braces may seem stressful, you can help turn it into an exciting time for your teen. After all, at the end of the treatment they will get to see their brand new healthy smile! Some of the long term benefits that you can discuss with your teen are:

  • Healthy smiles = less time at the dentist. Let your child know that correcting their smile will reduce their chance of problems such as gum disease, which means they will get to spend less time in the dentist’s chair! 
  • A new smile can bring confidence! Not only does smiling more boost your mood, but having a smile that you are proud of can bring your more confidence in the most important moments of your life such as graduation ceremonies! 
  • Another bonus that comes with getting braces is that your teen can choose their braces colours! The coloured bands are changed throughout treatment, so they have plenty of opportunities to wear all of their favourite colours. 

Tip #3: Include them in the plan 

Once your child is on board with receiving orthodontic treatment, actively include them in the treatment plan moving forward. Allow them the chance to ask questions during their consultation, and check in with them often during their treatment process. If your child feels included in the planning, they will feel much more comfortable about the entire treatment process. 

Ready to bring your teen in to talk more about braces? Contact us today to book your consultation!

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The Benefits Of Invisalign

The Benefits Of Invisalign

You may or may not have heard about Invisalign, but do you know what it can do for you? There are plenty of treatment options to help you straighten your smile, but Invisalign is unique in the fact that it is the only 100% clear treatment that does not involve any brackets or wires. There is a good chance that you already know someone who has used Invisalign, but perhaps you didn’t even notice! This is because Invisalign is hardly noticeable when in place, and is also easy to remove for eating. Below are some of the other great benefits of choosing Invisalign for your orthodontic treatment:

  • Invisible
    Invisalign is named for its invisible appearance! The aligner trays are completely clear and are hardly noticeable when being worn on your teeth. This makes Invisalign the perfect option for teens or adults who are self-conscious about how braces might look, or individuals who don’t want brackets or wires in their mouth.
  • Clean
    Another great thing about having removable orthodontic trays is that cleaning your teeth and gums becomes a breeze! Simply remove the trays before you eat, brush and floss your teeth as normal after eating, and pop the trays back in. You can also clean the trays themselves by giving them a quick rinse or by brushing them with your toothbrush. This helps keep your mouth clean and healthy during treatment.
  • Comfortable
    Not only are Invisalign trays practically Invisible, they are comfortable to wear too! The trays are made of custom-fit smooth plastic which is much easier to wear than traditional metal braces. This means that you won’t have to worry about sharp pieces of wire scratching your mouth!
  • Time Saver
    Did you know that Invisalign patients only need to see their orthodontist every 8 weeks or so? While other orthodontic treatments can require more frequent checkups and adjustments, Invisalign helps to save you time by requiring fewer trips to the Orthodontists office. The system is designed so that patients can swap their trays every week or two for a new pre-made tray that will move their teeth for the next stage of treatment. At your scheduled appointment, your orthodontist makes sure your teeth are moving properly at your treatment is proceeding as they planned.
  • Convenience
    One of the biggest worries about traditional metal braces comes from individuals who play sports or a musical wind instrument. The metal brackets and wires unfortunately can scrape or cut the inside the mouth. With Invisalign, the trays are smooth and can even be removed altogether for a game or for a performance.
  • Healthy
    The ultimate goal of Invisalign treatment is to help you get a straighter smile. Not only can this be visually appealing for many people, but it is also better for your overall dental health. Eliminating crowding or gaps makes it much easier to care for your smile, and this leads to better oral and overall health.
  • Enjoy
    There are many food restrictions that come with traditional braces, and this can be disappointing for patients, especially on special occasions. When you start your Invisalign treatment, you won’t be provided with a list of foods that you should not eat. Since the trays are removable, you can take your trays out to eat whatever foods you like!
  • Straight Smile
    If you are looking for a confident new smile, Invisalign is probably a great option for you. The results really do speak for themselves!

Ready to experience the Invisalign difference for yourself? Contact us today to book your consultation to learn more about our Invisalign treatments in Victoria BC.

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Reasons To Avoid DIY Braces

Reasons To Avoid DIY Braces

Youtube, Pinterest, and online blogs can be so inspiring! There’s nothing like the satisfying feeling that comes from creating a Do-It-Yourself masterpiece – but some things just should not be DIY’d. One of those things that should never ever be done at home is orthodontic treatment, no matter how many online resources recommend it. Attempting your own at home treatment is a dangerous procedure, and for that reason it is best left to an Orthodontist in Victoria BC with proper training. Below are more reasons why you should avoid DIY orthodontics:

Teeth could move more than planned

Orthodontics is a very specific science, and teeth can move very easily! If you treat specific teeth, those teeth are very susceptible to moving again. It is very likely that those teeth will either return to their original place or move even further than you had hoped.

Teeth may fall out

When people who are not professional Orthodontists attempt to move their own teeth, they often apply improper pressure to their teeth. This can cause teeth to shift dramatically and even fall out!

Gum infection

Improper movement of teeth can also cause unnatural strain on the gums, and this can easily lead to gum infections. This risk of infection is even more prominent when non-sterile foreign materials are placed in the mouth in an attempt to shift the teeth.

Speech impediments

If teeth are moved too rapidly or incorrectly, this can dramatically affect a person’s speech. DIY braces can leave you with drastic alterations or impediments in the way you speak.

Emotional trauma

The lack of results or the extremely unfavourable changes in the mouth can cause emotional trauma such as stress, anxiety, disappointment, or worry. These types of emotional reactions can easily affect other areas of life!

Costly repairs

While DIY braces may seem like a way to save money, the damage that they can cause can actually lead to costly dental treatment and necessary repairs. This means that you could spend even more money than the orthodontic treatment would have originally cost.

If you are considering DIY orthodontic treatment to save money, we have good news for you! Most orthodontists offer affordable monthly payment options for orthodontic treatments. A certified professional can offer you options for your individualized treatment. One of our most popular options is Invisalign clear aligners. These clear plastic trays are comfortable, discreet, and removable, so you can eat and clean your mouth as normal while straightening your smile at the same time.

If you are interested in Invisalign, the first step is to book a consultation. If you are eligible for Invisalign treatment, our Orthodontist, Dr. Evan Ayers, will take a digital scan of your teeth to create your Invisalign trays. You will receive your trays shortly after along with instructions on how to wear them and care for them properly. During treatment, you can eat the foods you enjoy while correcting your smile in a discreet, safe, and timely fashion.

Before you consider damaging your teeth and mouth with Do-It-Yourself orthodontics, speak with Dr. Ayers about the professional options we can offer you at West Shore Orthodontics. Our team always looks forward to welcoming new patients and discussing their best options with them. Contact us today to book your complimentary initial consultation!

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Removing and Taking Out Invisalign

Removing and Taking Out Invisalign

It’s the first day of your Invisalign treatment and you could not be happier! You have been dreaming about your new smile, and now the treatment process has finally begun. Luckily, Invisalign aligners are removable and clear, which allows you to eat the things that you normally eat and clean your mouth thoroughly. After preparing your favourite meal, you go to take your aligners out and… hmm… you seem to be having trouble…

If the above situation sounds familiar, you are not alone! If you have had any attachments placed on your teeth as apart of your Victoria Invisalign treatment, you may have a little trouble learning how to put in and take out your aligners at first. While you could trek all the way back to the orthodontist’s office to ask them to show you how to do it again, save yourself the journey and try the tips below first. Have no fear – you will get the hang of it in no time!

Inserting the aligners:

The number one rule when inserting your aligners is: start with the front and work your way to the back. Once the tray is fully covering your front teeth, use your thumbs to make sure they are firmly seated. If you still feel like they are not firmly in place, never bite your aligners into place! This can bend or even break your tray. Instead, use the “chewies” given to you at your appointment to gently “chew” your aligners until they are seated firmly. Never force your aligners in. If it feels funny or off, it might have folded. In this case, remove the aligners, gently fix the fold, and try again.  

Removing the aligners:

When it’s time to remove your aligners, always do the reverse of when you are inserting them. This means that instead of starting at the front, you should start at the back and work your way forward. Use your finger to “flick” the tray downwards to release the tray from your teeth on both sides. This will make it easier for you to grab. Once it has been released, grab both sides and gently pull down and forward. If you are removing the tray over a particularly difficult or crowded area, gently rock or wiggle the tray to help it loosen. Remember that excessive force is never necessary to remove your aligners. If you use too much force, you could break your aligner or the attachments on your teeth. Being gentle is key! 

One more thing: a drier mouth makes it much easier to remove your Invisalign aligners. If you are going to be removing them soon, try not to drink anything until you have removed the aligner.  

Not so bad after all? If you are still struggling with inserting or removing your Invisalign aligners, speak to your orthodontic professional as soon as you can to avoid delays in treatment. Once you have mastered the above techniques, your treatment should be a breeze! 

Questions about Invisalign? Our office owner, Dr. Ayers, has been an Invisalign provider since 2012, and we would love to answer any questions that you may have! Contact us by phone or online today! 

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How Long Does Orthodontic Treatment Take?

How Long Does Orthodontics Treatment Take

One of the first questions that patients ask our orthodontist Dr. Evan Ayers is: how long is my orthodontic treatment going to take? With any orthodontic treatment, it is natural to focus on the beautiful healthy smile that you will have at the end of your treatment. Because of this, throughout the treatment process many people get so excited about their new smile that they find themselves asking this question often. 

The timeline varies depending on the severity of the problem that is being corrected. Very minor malocclusions can be treated in as little as 6 months, but on average, orthodontic treatment takes between 12 to 24 months. Very severe malocclusions can take even longer to successfully treat. This timeline is also impacted by things such as the patients age, dental health, the kinds of treatment devices used, and bite issues such as crossbites or open-bites. 

12-24 months may seem like a long time, and this is because correcting teeth and jaws is a highly detailed task. With so many moving parts, our Victoria BC orthodontist needs to develop a step by step treatment plan that will help correct any issues in your teeth or jaw. This plan will also take into account natural tooth movement, growth patterns, and the natural alignment of your face, jaw and lips! Your treatment may include a variety of devices such as braces, Invisalign, aligners, retainers, or brackets in order to move your teeth to a new spot. Over the course of your treatment, you will see a lot of changes happen, so don’t be alarmed if your teeth look wildly misaligned one week and back in place the next. This is all part of the process! 

Another element that will help determine your treatment timeline is the type of treatment you decide on. As mentioned above, some methods will be combined with additional devices to help complete your treatment, but the most common treatments are: 

  • Metal braces, also referred to as traditional braces
  • Clear/ceramic braces – similar to traditional braces, but less visible 
  • Lingual braces – usually attached to the inner side of the teeth rather than the outward facing side 
  • Invisalign – clear aligner trays 

Each patient will need a treatment type that best suits their lifestyle, dental treatment needs, and budget. Your initial consultation is where you can ask questions and discover new treatment options. Dr. Evan Ayers is the best person to help you determine which treatment type is right for you. At your first appointment, our team at WSO will examine your smile and likely take some x-rays to help determine the best treatment options for you.   

Our top piece of advice for all patients is: if you want your orthodontic treatment to go as quickly and smoothly as possible, follow our orthodontists instructions to the T! This includes everything from following the recommended wearing times for retainers, keeping track of how long you wear elastics on your braces, and keeping your mouth clean during treatment. Remember that your orthodontist has had highly specialized training when it comes to correcting teeth, so make sure to listen to their advice.

If you are curious about the timeline for your own personal orthodontic treatment, or have any other questions, contact our office! Our team is always happy to help you find the treatment option that will work best for you.   

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How Long Does Invisalign Treatment Take?

How Long Does Invisalign Treatment Take

Have you heard about Invisalign? Invisalign is a treatment used to straighten smiles, and it can be used instead of traditional metal braces. Each Invisalign patient will receive a set of clear, removable aligners that help to straighten their teeth. Many people prefer Invisalign to traditional braces as they allow for more flexibility in food choices and the clear aligners are much easier to clean. While this all sounds great, many people wonder about the timelines for Invisalign treatments in Victoria BC. This includes everything from the total treatment completion time, the amount of time needed to start seeing results, and how long the aligners need to be worn every day. If you want to learn more about Invisalign treatment timelines, check them out below.

The Invisalign Process

The first thing that you need to know about Invisalign is that it is a totally custom process. Because of this, the overall treatment timeline can vary depending on each individual patient. That being said, the average Invisalign treatment will be around 12-18 months from beginning to end. Just be prepared that your treatment may be shorter or longer than this average depending on your specific needs. Your treatment can also be extended if you lose your aligners, a pet chews your aligners, or you fail to wear your aligners for long enough every day.

Your Invisalign aligners work by slowly moving your teeth into the proper position over a period of time, so depending on your initial diagnosis, your teeth may need to move drastically or only slightly. Each time you get a new set of aligners, your teeth will move closer to where they need to be. But these changes can be small from day to day, and for that reason it could take anywhere from a few weeks to a few months to begin seeing a difference in your smile. Some patients see results right away, while others have to wait up to five months to see results. If your treatment is taking longer than you would like, it is a good idea to schedule an appointment with your Invisalign treatment provider to make sure your treatment is still on track. The best advice at this stage is just to be patient and let your aligners work their magic!

Daily Life With Invisalign

On a day to day basis, you will wear the aligners for a minimum prescribed time every day (usually 20-22 hours per day). Your aligners will be adjusted and replaced about every one or two weeks for them to complete their stage of the treatment. If you fail to follow your orthodontist’s directions, your treatment may take longer than you would like.

The final question you may be asking is: is an Invisalign treatment faster than the traditional braces treatment? This all depends if you are looking at short term or long term results. For the short term, most patients see faster results with traditional braces. This is due to the fact that metal braces move teeth into position in a more random pattern than an Invisalign treatment does. They do this by applying pressure to all teeth at once, even the already straight teeth. With Invisalign, your already straight teeth are left in position while each misaligned tooth is moved individually. Because of this, you may see long term results more quickly with Invisalign – ie. the treatment may be faster than with a traditional braces treatment.

Have questions about Invisalign? Contact us with all of your questions, or book a no-pressure consultation to see if Invisalign is right for you!

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Ask These Invisalign Questions To Your Orthodontist

Invisalign-Questions-Ask-Orthodontist

It’s easy to see why Invisalign is a growing popular way for people to straighten their smiles. The flexibility to eat what you love, while being able to easily clean your aligners and teeth offers a world of difference compared to traditional metal braces. If you have been thinking about using Invisalign to help you find your new smile, congratulations! This is a big decision both physically and financially, and it should be given careful consideration to make sure that it is the right treatment option for you.

The best place to start is with an Invisalign consultation our Victoria BC orthodontist.  When you go for your consultation, below are some questions that you may want to ask the orthodontist so that you can best understand the treatment process:

  • What does the beginning of treatment look like?
    Your treatment begins with either a scan of your teeth or a physical impression of your mouth. These will be used to create the personalized Invisalign trays that you will wear every day! Once the trays are ready, you can start the process of straightening your smile.
  • Will I be using Invisalign clear aligners or another brand?
    We are proud to be an Invisalign Straight Smile Provider, and this means that we use genuine Invisalign products for every Invisalign patient.
  • How long will my treatment last?
    Since each Invisalign treatment is totally custom, the timeline for the entire treatment will depend on each patient’s situation and needs. Many patients will finish their treatment within 10-12 months, but some could take up to 18 months or more. This of course depends on the severity of the misalignment, and on how strictly you follow the prescribed duration of time to wear your aligners. Generally, we find that Invisalign treatments are shorter than traditional braces treatments.
  • How much does Invisalign cost?
    Since Invisalign treatments vary, so will the cost. Our recommendation is to first call your insurance provider to see if any or all of the treatment can be covered by a dental coverage plan. Once you have determined this, you can work with our office to develop a payment schedule that works for you.
  • How often do I need to visit the orthodontist’s office during treatment?
    Compared to having to visit the office once a month for traditional braces, with Invisalign you will only need to check in once every 2-3 months. This helps our team make sure your treatment is on track to straighten your smile!
  • What happens if one of my aligners is lost or broken?
    Because your Invisalign aligners need to be worn pretty much at all times besides while eating, you should contact your treatment provider as soon as possible to get a replacement tray if one is broken or lost. The good news is that since you will be wearing them almost all of the time, it is unlikely that you will misplace or break your aligners.
  • Does Invisalign work as well as traditional metal braces?
    This is one of the most common questions, and the answer is a simple ‘yes’! Whether you choose to go with a traditional braces treatment or Invisalign, your end result will be pretty much the same.

Now that you know what to ask, you are all set to book your Invisalign consultation! Start the journey to your new smile by contacting our office today to book your consultation with our expert team.

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