Invisalign FAQs

A confident smile and increased self-esteem aren't the only benefits of correcting your smile with Invisalign — your oral health can be positively enhanced as well. Learn more Invisalign from these common questions.

Will Invisalign® work for me?


If you have all your adult teeth with fully erupted molars, most patients can be treated with Invisalign®, even if they have crowns or bridges. Many common issues like crooked or crowded teeth, spaces between teeth and certain overbite and crossbites can be successfully corrected. Dr Hiren Patel is also one of the most experienced Invisalign® clinicians in the south of Surrey and will be able to give you a reliable opinion if you are suitable candidate for Invisalign®.




Do the aligners hurt?


It is normal to feel temporary discomfort when you wear or change the aligners for the first few days. The smooth aligners are not harmful to the inside of your mouth, but you do feel pressure. This though is a good sign that the aligners are working.




Can Invisalign close gaps


Yes. Spaces between teeth are generally easy to close with Invisalign.




Are crowns a factor in Invisalign treatment


Crowns (tooth caps) are usually not a factor in Invisalign treatment. However, sometimes small tooth-coloured composites called "attachments" are bonded onto teeth to help achieve certain movements and are more difficult to bond on crowns than teeth. In these cases, the location of crowns must be carefully evaluated. An Invisalign-trained dental practitioner can advise.




Are bridges a factor in Invisalign treatment


Because bridges firmly link two or more teeth together, they offer significant resistance to tooth movement. Your Invisalign-trained dental practitioner will be able to determine whether bridges will be a factor in your treatment. An Invisalign certified dental practitioner can advise.




Are there certain dental conditions that automatically exclude someone from being an eligible patient


Only your dental practitioner can determine if you are a good candidate for Invisalign treatment.




Does the procedure work on overbites


An experienced Invisalign dental practitioner can use Invisalign to treat overbites in the vast majority of adults and adolescents.




I am currently wearing braces. Can I make the switch to Invisalign


A significant number of patients are being treated with a combination of braces and Invisalign. Consult your Invisalign dental practitioner to determine the best treatment for you.




Do Invisalign aligners contain Bisphenol-A (BPA)?


No. Invisalign aligners do not contain Bisphenol-A or phthalate plasticisers. Invisalign aligners are made of USP Class VI medical grade, high molecular weight, polyurethane resins. Tests have been conducted to determine the biocompatibility of these materials, and show that they are biocompatible and pass all applicable regulatory requirements and thresholds for human wear in the mouth. Of course, as with any medical device, you should consult with your dental practitioner about your aligner treatment and any applicable risks of use.




Does Invisalign have ISO certification


ISO is an international organisation which promotes standardisation and grants Quality Certifications. Align is certified to the ISO 13485:2003 standard. This standard is granted to companies which comply with the regulatory requirements for medical equipment and devices.




How many patients are being treated with Invisalign


More than 8 million patients (including 1.4 million teen patients) worldwide have been treated with Invisalign. The number of Invisalign smiles grows daily.




How old is the technology


In 1945, Dr. H.D. Kiesling envisioned that one day modern technology would enable the use of a series of tooth positioners to produce the kinds of movements required for comprehensive orthodontic treatment. Align Technology has made this vision a reality. Using advanced computer technology, Align Technology produces Invisalign, a series of customised clear aligners. Each aligner is worn sequentially by the patient to produce extensive tooth movements in both upper and lower arches.




How old is Invisalign


Align Technology, Inc., the company that manufactures Invisalign, was founded in 1997.




What are aligners made of and what do they look like


The virtually invisible aligners are made of strong medical grade thermoplastic material, uniquely developed for the Invisalign treatment plan. The aligners are custom-made for you and fit snugly over your teeth. Some orthodontists have referred to them as 'contact lenses for teeth'. Have a look at the photo gallery for examples of what the aligners look like, inside and outside the mouth.




How does Invisalign work


Based on Dr Hiren Patel’s diagnosis and prescription, a series of aligners are custom made in a laboratory using highly advanced 3D computer imaging and machining technology in Texas, USA. You wear each aligner for two weeks, before replacing it with the next one, until your teeth are straight. You must wear your aligners for 22-23 hours a day for them to work, and most treatments usually takes 9-10 months, but every case is different!




How do I get started with Invisalign


Just make an appointment with an Invisalign-trained dentist, Dr Hiren Patel at Smile With Pride Dental Care, Woolwich, for an initial consultation by contacting us today. Call us on 020 8854 0726 today!




Is this a new way to straighten teeth


Dentists or orthodontists have, in the past, successfully used removable appliances for years. But with the application of Align Technology’s 3D computer technology and mass-customisation, the Invisalign system can be used to treat almost anyone who wants straighter teeth. The unique Invisalign software allows patients to see their treatment from beginning to end even before the start of treatment.




What are the benefits of Invisalign


Invisalign aligners are practically invisible. No one may even notice that you’re wearing these virtually invisible ‘braces’, making Invisalign a seamless fit with your lifestyle and day-to-day interactions with others. Invisalign aligners are removable. Unlike fixed metal braces, you have the flexibility to eat and drink what you want during treatment by simply removing the aligners. And you can also remove the aligners to brush and floss as you normally would for fresh breath and to maintain good oral hygiene. Invisalign aligners are comfortable. Unlike traditional fixed braces, there are no metal brackets or wires that could cause irritation to your mouth. This also means that in most cases less time is spent in your dental practitioner’s practice for adjustments. And finally, Invisalign allows you to view your virtual results and treatment plan before you even begin treatment so you can see how your straight teeth are expected to look when your treatment is complete.




What is Invisalign®?


Invisalign is the virtually invisible way to straighten your teeth and achieve the dazzling smile you've always dreamed of. Using advanced 3D computer-imaging technology, Invisalign depicts your complete treatment plan based on your dental practitioner’s prescription, from the initial position of your teeth to the final desired position. Then a series of clear aligners are custom-made for your teeth - and your teeth only - to move them little by little. Each aligner is worn for about two weeks before being replaced by the next in the series, until the final position of your teeth is achieved. Your Invisalign treatment time will be determined by your dentist or orthodontist, based on your specific needs.




How much does Invisalign cost?


Your Initial Consultation is free!* We can offer full Invisalign® treatments from as little as £1,300 to £3,600. This includes: All Photographs, Impressions, Radiographs, ClinCheck viewing, Full set of aligners, all 6 weekly review appointments, Case Refinements should this be necessary and Retainers at the end of treatment. (We can also offer Interest Free Option subject to credit check acceptance.) Some Practices will quote lower initial fees but will not include some of the steps above and usually work out to be have much higher fees overall. Please ensure that you are aware of exactly what you will be provided with when comparing fees. *a fully refundable (on attendance) £20 deposit is required, the deposit is refunded to you after you attend your initial consultation.




How often must I see my dental practitioner once I have started treatment?


Appointment intervals are generally the same as with traditional braces but can be much quicker with less time spent in the dentists’ or orthodontists’ chair during appointments as no adjustments need to be made to wires/brackets. Patients typically visit their dental practitioner every 4 to 6 weeks to ensure the treatment is progressing as planned, and to receive their next few sets of Invisalign aligners, but your dentist or orthodontist will decide based on your treatment.




How long does the Invisalign treatment take?


The total duration of treatment depends on the complexity of the treatment and is generally equal to that of traditional braces. Typically treatment can last between 4 and 18+ months. During your consultation, your dentist or orthodontist can provide you with more detailed information.




Is the Invisalign treatment painful?


Some people may experience temporary, minor discomfort for a few days, at the beginning of each new stage of treatment when they insert a new aligner. This is normal and is typically described as a feeling of pressure. It is a sign that the aligners are working – moving your teeth gradually, helping you to achieve the final results. This discomfort typically goes away in a couple of days.




What's the best way to clean my aligners?


The best way to clean your aligners is by brushing and rinsing them in lukewarm water and using the Invisalign Cleaning Crystals or special cleaning tablets. It’s important that you brush your teeth after each meal and prior to re-inserting your aligners to maintain proper hygiene.




Can I chew gum while wearing aligners?


Chewing gum while wearing aligners is not advised as gum can stick to aligners. It is recommended that aligners be removed for all meals and snacks.




Can I smoke while wearing the aligners?


Smoking is discouraged while wearing aligners because it is possible for the aligners to become stained / discoloured




Will the aligners affect speech?


The vast majority of patients report no effect on speech. However, as with traditional orthodontic appliances, there is an initial adjustment period associated with having something new in the mouth.




How often must the aligners be worn?


Aligners should be worn all the time during treatment, except when eating, brushing or flossing teeth.




Are there restrictions on what I can eat while in treatment?


No. Unlike traditional wires and brackets, you can eat whatever you like while in treatment because you remove your aligners to eat and drink. Thus, there is no need to restrict consuming any of your favourite foods and snacks. Also, it is important that you brush and floss your teeth after each meal and prior to re-inserting your aligners to maintain proper hygiene.




What is the minimum age of a patient that a doctor can treat with Invisalign®?


With experience, your dental practitioner can use Invisalign to treat malocclusion for a majority of adults and adolescents who want a better smile. If you are a teenager, talk to your Invisalign dental practitioner to see if Invisalign Teen may be the right treatment option for you.





Invisalign The Clear Alternative to Braces

Here you will find some questions and answers about Ivisalign®  the new clinically proven, invisible way to straighten your teeth.

Will Invisalign® work for me?


If you have all your adult teeth with fully erupted molars, most patients can be treated with Invisalign®, even if they have crowns or bridges. Many common issues like crooked or crowded teeth, spaces between teeth and certain overbite and crossbites can be successfully corrected. Dr Hiren Patel is also one of the most experienced Invisalign® clinicians in the south of Surrey and will be able to give you a reliable opinion if you are suitable candidate for Invisalign®.




Do the aligners hurt?


It is normal to feel temporary discomfort when you wear or change the aligners for the first few days. The smooth aligners are not harmful to the inside of your mouth, but you do feel pressure. This though is a good sign that the aligners are working.




Can Invisalign close gaps


Yes. Spaces between teeth are generally easy to close with Invisalign.




Are crowns a factor in Invisalign treatment


Crowns (tooth caps) are usually not a factor in Invisalign treatment. However, sometimes small tooth-coloured composites called "attachments" are bonded onto teeth to help achieve certain movements and are more difficult to bond on crowns than teeth. In these cases, the location of crowns must be carefully evaluated. An Invisalign-trained dental practitioner can advise.




Are bridges a factor in Invisalign treatment


Because bridges firmly link two or more teeth together, they offer significant resistance to tooth movement. Your Invisalign-trained dental practitioner will be able to determine whether bridges will be a factor in your treatment. An Invisalign certified dental practitioner can advise.




Are there certain dental conditions that automatically exclude someone from being an eligible patient


Only your dental practitioner can determine if you are a good candidate for Invisalign treatment.




Does the procedure work on overbites


An experienced Invisalign dental practitioner can use Invisalign to treat overbites in the vast majority of adults and adolescents.




I am currently wearing braces. Can I make the switch to Invisalign


A significant number of patients are being treated with a combination of braces and Invisalign. Consult your Invisalign dental practitioner to determine the best treatment for you.




Do Invisalign aligners contain Bisphenol-A (BPA)?


No. Invisalign aligners do not contain Bisphenol-A or phthalate plasticisers. Invisalign aligners are made of USP Class VI medical grade, high molecular weight, polyurethane resins. Tests have been conducted to determine the biocompatibility of these materials, and show that they are biocompatible and pass all applicable regulatory requirements and thresholds for human wear in the mouth. Of course, as with any medical device, you should consult with your dental practitioner about your aligner treatment and any applicable risks of use.




Does Invisalign have ISO certification


ISO is an international organisation which promotes standardisation and grants Quality Certifications. Align is certified to the ISO 13485:2003 standard. This standard is granted to companies which comply with the regulatory requirements for medical equipment and devices.




How many patients are being treated with Invisalign


More than 8 million patients (including 1.4 million teen patients) worldwide have been treated with Invisalign. The number of Invisalign smiles grows daily.




How old is the technology


In 1945, Dr. H.D. Kiesling envisioned that one day modern technology would enable the use of a series of tooth positioners to produce the kinds of movements required for comprehensive orthodontic treatment. Align Technology has made this vision a reality. Using advanced computer technology, Align Technology produces Invisalign, a series of customised clear aligners. Each aligner is worn sequentially by the patient to produce extensive tooth movements in both upper and lower arches.




How old is Invisalign


Align Technology, Inc., the company that manufactures Invisalign, was founded in 1997.




What are aligners made of and what do they look like


The virtually invisible aligners are made of strong medical grade thermoplastic material, uniquely developed for the Invisalign treatment plan. The aligners are custom-made for you and fit snugly over your teeth. Some orthodontists have referred to them as 'contact lenses for teeth'. Have a look at the photo gallery for examples of what the aligners look like, inside and outside the mouth.




How does Invisalign work


Based on Dr Hiren Patel’s diagnosis and prescription, a series of aligners are custom made in a laboratory using highly advanced 3D computer imaging and machining technology in Texas, USA. You wear each aligner for two weeks, before replacing it with the next one, until your teeth are straight. You must wear your aligners for 22-23 hours a day for them to work, and most treatments usually takes 9-10 months, but every case is different!




How do I get started with Invisalign


Just make an appointment with an Invisalign-trained dentist, Dr Hiren Patel at Smile With Pride Dental Care, Woolwich, for an initial consultation by contacting us today. Call us on 020 8854 0726 today!




Is this a new way to straighten teeth


Dentists or orthodontists have, in the past, successfully used removable appliances for years. But with the application of Align Technology’s 3D computer technology and mass-customisation, the Invisalign system can be used to treat almost anyone who wants straighter teeth. The unique Invisalign software allows patients to see their treatment from beginning to end even before the start of treatment.




What are the benefits of Invisalign


Invisalign aligners are practically invisible. No one may even notice that you’re wearing these virtually invisible ‘braces’, making Invisalign a seamless fit with your lifestyle and day-to-day interactions with others. Invisalign aligners are removable. Unlike fixed metal braces, you have the flexibility to eat and drink what you want during treatment by simply removing the aligners. And you can also remove the aligners to brush and floss as you normally would for fresh breath and to maintain good oral hygiene. Invisalign aligners are comfortable. Unlike traditional fixed braces, there are no metal brackets or wires that could cause irritation to your mouth. This also means that in most cases less time is spent in your dental practitioner’s practice for adjustments. And finally, Invisalign allows you to view your virtual results and treatment plan before you even begin treatment so you can see how your straight teeth are expected to look when your treatment is complete.




What is Invisalign®?


Invisalign is the virtually invisible way to straighten your teeth and achieve the dazzling smile you've always dreamed of. Using advanced 3D computer-imaging technology, Invisalign depicts your complete treatment plan based on your dental practitioner’s prescription, from the initial position of your teeth to the final desired position. Then a series of clear aligners are custom-made for your teeth - and your teeth only - to move them little by little. Each aligner is worn for about two weeks before being replaced by the next in the series, until the final position of your teeth is achieved. Your Invisalign treatment time will be determined by your dentist or orthodontist, based on your specific needs.




How much does Invisalign cost?


Your Initial Consultation is free!* We can offer full Invisalign® treatments from as little as £1,300 to £3,600. This includes: All Photographs, Impressions, Radiographs, ClinCheck viewing, Full set of aligners, all 6 weekly review appointments, Case Refinements should this be necessary and Retainers at the end of treatment. (We can also offer Interest Free Option subject to credit check acceptance.) Some Practices will quote lower initial fees but will not include some of the steps above and usually work out to be have much higher fees overall. Please ensure that you are aware of exactly what you will be provided with when comparing fees. *a fully refundable (on attendance) £20 deposit is required, the deposit is refunded to you after you attend your initial consultation.




How often must I see my dental practitioner once I have started treatment?


Appointment intervals are generally the same as with traditional braces but can be much quicker with less time spent in the dentists’ or orthodontists’ chair during appointments as no adjustments need to be made to wires/brackets. Patients typically visit their dental practitioner every 4 to 6 weeks to ensure the treatment is progressing as planned, and to receive their next few sets of Invisalign aligners, but your dentist or orthodontist will decide based on your treatment.




How long does the Invisalign treatment take?


The total duration of treatment depends on the complexity of the treatment and is generally equal to that of traditional braces. Typically treatment can last between 4 and 18+ months. During your consultation, your dentist or orthodontist can provide you with more detailed information.




Is the Invisalign treatment painful?


Some people may experience temporary, minor discomfort for a few days, at the beginning of each new stage of treatment when they insert a new aligner. This is normal and is typically described as a feeling of pressure. It is a sign that the aligners are working – moving your teeth gradually, helping you to achieve the final results. This discomfort typically goes away in a couple of days.




What's the best way to clean my aligners?


The best way to clean your aligners is by brushing and rinsing them in lukewarm water and using the Invisalign Cleaning Crystals or special cleaning tablets. It’s important that you brush your teeth after each meal and prior to re-inserting your aligners to maintain proper hygiene.




Can I chew gum while wearing aligners?


Chewing gum while wearing aligners is not advised as gum can stick to aligners. It is recommended that aligners be removed for all meals and snacks.




Can I smoke while wearing the aligners?


Smoking is discouraged while wearing aligners because it is possible for the aligners to become stained / discoloured




Will the aligners affect speech?


The vast majority of patients report no effect on speech. However, as with traditional orthodontic appliances, there is an initial adjustment period associated with having something new in the mouth.




How often must the aligners be worn?


Aligners should be worn all the time during treatment, except when eating, brushing or flossing teeth.




Are there restrictions on what I can eat while in treatment?


No. Unlike traditional wires and brackets, you can eat whatever you like while in treatment because you remove your aligners to eat and drink. Thus, there is no need to restrict consuming any of your favourite foods and snacks. Also, it is important that you brush and floss your teeth after each meal and prior to re-inserting your aligners to maintain proper hygiene.




What is the minimum age of a patient that a doctor can treat with Invisalign®?


With experience, your dental practitioner can use Invisalign to treat malocclusion for a majority of adults and adolescents who want a better smile. If you are a teenager, talk to your Invisalign dental practitioner to see if Invisalign Teen may be the right treatment option for you.





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