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Bellevue's Best Smiles

How long does Invisalign® take?

Woman using clear alignerInvisalign clear aligners are a removable, near-invisible method of teeth straightening, and their discretion has lent much to their popularity. One of the most common questions people have about Invisalign is how long it takes to do its job. To give a brief answer, it depends. It depends on the individual, the state of their teeth, their desired correction plan, and how vigilant they are in wearing the trays.

Invisalign can treat simple misalignments in as little as six months. However, on average, it takes between twelve to eighteen months to do its work. More complex cases, like crowding, could take twenty-four months or more. Invisalign is not designed for more severe cases, so we usually prescribe braces or other methods for those instances.

Why does the Duration of Treatment Vary?

Each patient is unique. More complex cases require a longer period of treatment. Some patients’ teeth will shift more slowly than others’ during treatment. We must also consider how much the teeth need to move to achieve the desired results. The further the teeth must move, the longer it takes.

Finally, the patient must wear the Invisalign trays for at least twenty-two hours day. If they are negligent in wearing the aligners, they will prolong the treatment. It is up to Dr. Lynn Jones make the call for what manner of treatment to provide for each case, and that will determine the estimated treatment time.

How Long does it Take for Invisalign to Close a Gap?

There are limitations in using Invisalign to close gaps. Invisalign cannot close a gap larger than six millimeters. If one gap or several gaps on either the top or the bottom are over that six-millimeter limit, Invisalign won’t work, and you’ll need a different treatment option. Closing a gap (or gaps) spanning six millimeters will take close to twenty-four months. A smaller gap will require less time.

How Long does it Take for Invisalign to fix Crowded Teeth?

If you have mild crowding, Invisalign can fix it in as short a time as six to twelve months. But the more severe the case of crowding, the longer the duration of the treatment. If the crowding is too severe, Dr. Lynn Jones may prescribe an additional treatment alongside Invisalign or he may not even prescribe Invisalign at all. Other treatments are better for this type of situation.

Does Invisalign take longer for Adults than it does for Teenagers?

Invisalign does not necessarily work faster in adjusting the teeth of adult patients than it does for teenagers. The speed of the treatment depends most heavily on the patient’s individual mouth, desired results, and them remembering to wear the trays often enough. Age is not so much a factor when compared to these things.

How often does a Patient need to Wear the Invisalign Clear Aligners?

People are drawn to Invisalign because the aligners are transparent and removable, contrary to braces. However, you must wear your Invisalign trays at least twenty-two hours a day for them to have their full effect. You should only remove them if you need to eat, drink, brush or floss. If you think this is too much of a commitment for you, you might want to ask us about other options for treatment.

For more information, please contact our office at (425) 688-1345.

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