Teens and metal braces may be a common pair, but plenty of adolescents would embrace the opportunity to straighten their teeth without the world knowing about it. Most teens who qualify for Invisalign Teen are thrilled to have an orthodontic experience that is far less noticeable than metal braces. We are certified Invisalign providers in Center City and offer Invisalign Teen at our Dentistry for Life office, conveniently located in the Medical Arts Building.
The Basics of Invisalign Teen
Invisalign Teen works the same way as Invisalign for adults. The aligners are worn for 20 to 22 hours a day, removed for meals and snacks, and changed out about every two weeks to ensure that teeth are carefully and consistently moving into alignment.
There are, however, characteristics that make Invisalign Teen different than traditional Invisalign and appropriate for adolescents.
• Eruption tabs: Invisalign Teen is designed to accommodate a developing teenager whose mouth is continually changing. Unlike an adult’s mouth, a teen may still have teeth that are erupting and growing. The eruption tabs that are part of Invisalign Teen are designed to guide new teeth into the correct position so there aren’t new alignment issues to contend with in the middle of treatment.
• Wear indicators: If only you could know just how committed your teen is to their Invisalign treatment. Dentists have the same concern, which is why every aligner has a blue dot wear indicator. The indicator fades as the aligners are worn, making it clear that aligners are in the mouth, doing their job, and your teens are following the rules of their orthodontic treatment.
• Replacement aligners: Six replacement aligners are included to account for those inevitable moments when an aligner is misplaced, lost, trashed, or damaged. Parents get some peace of mind, and teens feel like they have a little bit of a safety net should they make a mistake. Depending on what aligner is lost, however, and at what point the patient is in the treatment process could make a difference in cost because of the need for additional visits.
Is Your Teen a Good Candidate for Invisalign Teen?
Invisalign has a lot of advantages for the patient who wears these orthodontic aligners, and the treatment can correct just about any problem that traditional braces can fix. Whether someone is eligible for this type of treatment will vary from patient to patient, however.
If your child’s misalignment seems complicated, Invisalign Teen still might work. If the crooked, gapped, or crowding seems minor, Invisalign Teen might not work. Each case is different. We will evaluate your child’s bite, how their teeth are erupting, and where their teeth are situated now to determine whether this treatment is a viable option for your teen.
Once a patient is identified as a good candidate for Invisalign Teen, a comprehensive treatment plan will be developed and orthodontic treatment will get underway. While many parents worry that their teens are not responsible enough to handle the commitment that Invisalign demands, we have seen that many adolescents are so grateful to have an “easy” treatment route that they’re devoted to their orthodontics and motivated to make the treatment work.
Invisalign is a lifestyle, and it suits into a teen’s need to fit in and develop a healthy self-image and self-confidence without the stress or self-consciousness that can accompany metal braces. Teens want to be able to eat the popcorn and pizza. They want to smile for selfies. They want to feel good about themselves and appreciate that their teeth are getting straighter without anyone really knowing about it.