How are Invisalign braces different than other braces?

Gregory J. Jorgensen, DMD
Orthodontics & Dentofacial Orthopedics

The Invisalign system is not actually braces, but a series of clear aligners that sequentially move the teeth. The aligners are clear plastic shells that are manufactured so that each moves the crooked teeth just a little at a time. Aligners are worn full-time except during eating and brushing. Treatment time depends upon the severity of your condition.

Dante A. Gonzales, DMD
Orthodontics & Dentofacial Orthopedics
Invisalign is the brand name of an orthodontic appliance. The appliance consists of a series of clear plastic trays that are worn all of the time except when eating or brushing. The trays are custom made from an impression that is taken of your teeth. Each individual tray is designed to move your teeth approximately .25 mm by placing a light force on each tooth. The length of the treatment will depend on how far you need to move the teeth in order to achieve the proper alignment. Your dentist or orthodontist will determine where and how your teeth should move and the trays will be made accordingly.

Regular braces are attached to your teeth and cannot be removed. These "fixed" appliances place a constant force on your teeth by placing a wire in the braces. The orthodontist determines how your teeth move by the position of the brace on the teeth and changes to the wire.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.