Invisalign clear aligners are made of invisible plastic. Rather than being cemented or bonded to the teeth like metal or clear braces, the clear aligners are completely removable for things like eating, special occasions, and most importantly brushing and flossing. Invisalign clear aligners work the same way that traditional braces do. They apply carefully controlled forces to move your teeth into a better position without using metal wires. The plastic trays are specially designed to fit your teeth, and will slowly move the teeth from their current positions to the best possible alignment. This process is broken down into a few different stages, where you will have a different set of trays for each stage. Usually each stage lasts a few weeks, and you are advised to wear your trays for a minimum 20-22 hours per day. After each stage, you will receive a new set of trays and repeat this process for gradual movement of your teeth. This will continue until your teeth are perfectly realigned.


When you first begin wearing each Invisalign aligners—whether it’s the initial tray or subsequent trays in your set—you may feel a bit of “pressure,” which is actually an indication that the teeth are moving into the proper position as planned. While the majority of patients will not find this uncomfortable, if your teeth are sore over-the-counter pain relief medicine will provide adequate relief. Invisalign is largely regarded as far more comfortable than many other orthodontic techniques.


For most patients, Invisalign takes 12 months for most adults, although actual time will vary from person to person. Many people start seeing a difference in their teeth within two to three months of starting to use the aligners.


The exact cost of Invisalign will depend on the complexity of your case and whether or not your dental healthcare plan provides any insurance coverage. At Cottonwood Creek Dental, the total cost for your Invisalign treatment includes impressions, a take-home teeth whitening kit, and a set of retainers—many of which are additional expenses at other offices. To make Invisalign as affordable as possible, our office offers dental financing options through Wells Fargo Health Advantage. They will provide various payment plan options designed to fit any budget, and the application process is simple. A member of our team would be happy to help you explore your options. 


The first treatment alternative would be traditional braces, which is available for children, teens, and even adults. Depending on your unique needs, this can include braces with brackets and wires, designed to align the teeth for a straight smile. The second treatment alternative would be porcelain veneers. Sometimes described as “instant orthodontics,” porcelain veneers can correct gaps and tooth misalignments, creating the appearance of a straight, beautiful smile. Since this is not a true orthodontic solution, overbite and underbite issues would not be unresolved.


If you have any additional questions about Invisalign, or if you are interested in scheduling a complimentary consultation with Dr. Dolby, please contact us today, at 208-323-8545

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