What Does Invisalign Treat?
Experienced orthodontists use Invisalign as a treatment tool for many orthodontic problems. Invisalign is a safe, discreet, and effective method to straighten teeth without the metal brackets and wires used in braces.
Invisalign functions like metal braces by gently adjusting your teeth into their correct positions, but instead of permanent wires and brackets, Invisalign uses transparent, removable aligners. Same results, different method!
Invisalign is a powerful tool in the hands of an experienced orthodontist: whatever treatment method you use, the most important part of your orthodontic care is the skilled professional who designes your treatment plan and corrects your smile. Seek an experienced Invisalign doctor with the expertise necessary to help you win your grin!
What Conditions Can Invisalign Treat?
Orthodontists use Invisalign to treat conditions including:
- Gaps between teeth
- Deep overbite
- Open bite
- Excessive overjet
Below, we discuss the various dental conditions requiring orthodontic treatment, and how orthodontists correct each them using Invisalign treatment.
Can Invisalign Aligners Correct Crowding?
Invisalign is an effective tool for correcting dental crowding. Tooth crowding occurs when there is not enough space in the jaw for all the teeth to grow in properly, forcing the teeth to grow into unnatural positions, which causes overlapping or twisted teeth.
For patients who suffer from crowding, a doctor will examine you to determine if you are an Invisalign candidate. In some cases, additional procedures may need to be performed if the crowding is excessive or problematic.
If the orthodontist determines Invisalign can help, the treatment works by first straightening teeth. Then the aligners will spread the teeth apart. In certain cases, your doctor may perform IPR (interproximal reduction) to make more space in your mouth. IPR is a straightforward procedure in which the doctor removes a small amount of enamel to provide room for all the teeth.
Can I Use Invisalign to Close Gaps?
Invisalign is frequently used to close gaps. Gaps are one or more too-large spaces between teeth: they can lead to crooked tooth growth and gum problems, and can increase the risk of damage to the teeth.
To close gaps with Invisalign, your doctor will create a custom treatment timeline using a series of aligners. Each one is optimized to slowly and safely close the spaces, while straightening any misaligned teeth.
In some instances, additional dental work is required after the Invisalign treatment. When the teeth are too small, for instance, a patient will be referred to a specialist for restorative bonding to correct the teeth and fully close the gaps.
Can Invisalign Correct an Overbite?
Overbites are treatable with Invisalign. An overbite is a too-far overlap between the top teeth and bottom teeth. While a small overbite is normal, Invisalign is effective for correcting an excessive overbite.
The orthodontist will designed a custom set of Invisalign aligners works to align the jaw. Invisalign attachments will provide added grip to help adjust the teeth into their correct positions.
In some cases, the doctor may use elastic rubber bands to provide added force to the shifting created by your aligners. Not every case requires rubber bands: the doctor will determine during your intitial diagnosis.
Can Invisalign Correct Underbite or Crossbite?
Yes, Invisalign is frequently used to correct a crossbite, also known as an underbite.
A crossbite is a type of malocclusion created when the upper and lower jaws are misaligned, causing improper overlap of the top and bottom rows of teeth. If left untreated for too long, the patient may eventually need surgery, which can be expensive and complex.
Invisalign is a reliable and effective method for shifting teeth into a proper bite. Crossbites are some of the most complex orthodontic conditions, so it is important to find an experienced orthodontist. If you're seeking treatment with Invisalign, look for a highly-ranked, experienced doctor, such as a Diamond Plus or Diamond Invisalign provider.
To correct crossbites with Invisalign, your orthodontist uses iTero 3D digital scanning to create a comprehensive image of your mouth, teeth, and roots, to effectively diagnose your condition and develop a treatment plan. The carefully-developed regimen of aligners will slowly draw your teeth into their correct positions. In certain cases, a combination of braces and Invisalign may be necessary to achieve the best results, or the doctor may refer you for oral surgery to surgically remove or adjust certain teeth.
Does Invisalign Correct Open Bite?
Invisalign is an effective method for correcting an open bite: and due to the comprehensive force applied by the aligners, may actually be more effective than traditional braces!
An open bite occurs when the top and bottom rows of teeth don't connect fully when the mouth is closed. It can be caused by genetic factors or bad oral habits like thumb-sucking or excessive pacifier use. Using Invisalign, your orthodontist applies an even and constant force on the teeth, gently pushing them into their proper positions so the mouth clsoes properly.
In rare instances, surgery may be needed to fully correct an open bite; your orthodontist will do a thorough review of your condition to determine that best course of action.
What Can Invisalign Not Treat?
There are some dental conditions that may not be treatable with Invisalign:
Shape and Size of Teeth
Some genetic factors, such as tooth size and shape, cannot be corrected by any orthodontic treatment. These will require cosmetic surgery to correct, using veneers or dental reshaping, to create a healthy, beautiful smile. Your orthodontist may undertake part of your treatment using orthodontics, and then refer you to a cosmetic dentist to finish your care.
Extrusions or Intrusions
Due to the design of Invisalign, it is less effective for drawing out impacted teeth (extrusions) or lowering them further down (intrusions). Orthodontists sometimes use braces to achieve this part of treatment before switching you to Invisalign.
Extreme Tooth Rotation
Crowded growth during dental development may cause a large degree of tooth rotation, where the tooth is twisted out of its correct position. If the rotation is more than 20 degrees, Invisalign may not work alone to move it into its correct placement.