March marks the first anniversary of our new “normal,” and we’ve been thinking about everything that’s happened in the last year, both locally and around the world. Here at Shiney Smiles Orthodontics, we’re proud of how resilient our community has been through every challenge and triumph. Times like these really make you evaluate what’s important in your life, from friends and family to your health and career. If you put your plans for orthodontic treatment on the back burner in 2020, now is the perfect time to make a healthy smile your priority. Continue reading to learn more about staying safe and healthy with Invisalign aligners during COVID-19!
It’s been a tough year for all of us, and after all the uncertainty, you deserve a beautiful smile you can be proud of. That’s where we come in! Our practice is proud to offer patients of all ages a variety of affordable treatment options, from clear and metal braces to Invisalign clear aligners. In fact, Invisalign has experienced a huge boost in popularity recently, thanks to the distinct advantages it’s had throughout the pandemic. Are you ready to take your smile to the next level in 2021? Keep reading below to learn why Invisalign clear aligners might be the perfect solution!
Invisalign fits into your life with ease
As a fixed appliance, traditional braces come with a bit of a learning curve. There are certain food restrictions, a more complex cleaning routine, and adjustment appointments to get used to. In contrast, Invisalign’s aligners are removable. That means there’s no need to change your daily habits! You’ll still be able to eat and drink all the same things, participate in sports without taking any extra precautions, and continue to do pretty much everything you did before you started treatment.
Many people won’t even realize you’re in the process of straightening your smile, thanks to the clear material Invisalign uses! This is often a huge selling point for teen and adult patients who are image-conscious, as it provides them with a much more subtle way to straighten their teeth. If that sounds like you, Invisalign could be just what you’re looking for.
Invisalign has an extra level of comfort
So many of us have been stuck at home for so long now that we don’t even want to touch anything with buttons or a zipper. Comfort is high up on our list of must-haves! Luckily, this is another area where Invisalign shines. Each aligner is made of a smooth thermoplastic material and custom-designed to fit firmly over your teeth. With no sharp or protruding edges to rub against your cheeks or gums, you’ll be used to wearing your new aligners in no time.
Aligners are also much less likely to result in an orthodontic emergency. Instead of brackets and wires that can bend or break, the Invisalign aligners all one piece. The trays are durable and long-lasting, and customized to fit firmly over your own teeth without sacrificing any comfort. As sturdy as they are, though, they’re not indestructible. If you don’t take good care of them, the aligners may crack, tear, or break. While some damaged aligners can still be worn until it’s time to switch, we may need to make a replacement for you or have you move to the next aligner earlier. If you do damage or lose an aligner, let us know as soon as possible so Dr. Sheinis can advise you on what you need to do.
Invisalign is convenient
Since they look nothing alike, you may be surprised to learn that braces and aligners actually work in the same way. Both methods use an orthodontic appliance to put gentle pressure on the teeth, moving them into more desirable positions over time. There is one big difference, though!
In order to produce the force needed to move the teeth, aligners must be worn for 20-22 hours every day and switched out for the next in the series every 1-2 weeks. This is what allows them to keep up with the movement of the teeth, and you’ll be responsible for keeping up with the schedule. When you stick to these guidelines, aligners can work just as well as braces at correcting many of the most common orthodontic issues.
We’ll generally provide our patients with several weeks’ worth of aligners at a time. This proved very convenient when we were dealing with temporary closings and stay-at-home orders! Even now, we’re happy to arrange curbside pick-up for the next set of aligners if the current ones run out. Patients with questions can also choose to set up a virtual appointment to speak with Dr. Sheinis and discuss their concerns if they’d rather not enter the office. These options allow every patient to feel safe and cared for while keeping their treatment plan on track.
Invisalign aligners are easy to care for
From the very beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, we’ve been told by all the experts to keep our hands away from our face and mouth to help limit the spread of germs. Unfortunately, patients in clear aligners can’t avoid touching their mouth multiple times a day, which means it’s more important than ever to practice good hygiene!
The good news is, it’s easy to care for both your oral health and your aligners when you use Invisalign or our in-house system. The aligners are designed to be removed prior to eating, drinking anything other than water, and brushing your teeth. Before you remove your aligner, be sure to wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Pay careful attention to the fingernails and fingertips since these come into the closest contact with your mouth and aligners.
Remember that washing your hands is the first line of defense against germs and infection. This CDC video has helpful information on how to do so quickly and efficiently! If you aren’t able to wash with soap and water for any reason, sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol can be used in a pinch. This concentration will be enough to kill most germs and bacteria on your hands.
It can be tempting to toss your aligners onto the nearest surface when you remove them, but you should always place aligners in a sealed container or leave them to soak in a cleaning solution when they’re not in your mouth. This protects them from germs and also prevents you from accidentally throwing them away (which happens more often than you’d think!) Once you’re done eating or your teeth are brushed and flossed, wash your hands again and rinse your aligner well before putting it back in your mouth.
It might sound like a lot of steps at first, but caring for your aligners will quickly become just another part of your daily routine. Being careful with your oral health and aligners will help protect your total body health, too!
Say hello to your best smile with Shiney Smiles Orthodontics
We’re still dealing with a pandemic, but there’s hope on the horizon at last. You don’t need to waste any more time feeling self-conscious about the way your teeth look or feel! Invisalign can improve your oral health and straighten your teeth safely and effectively. Are you a good fit for clear aligners? Get in touch today to schedule your FREE consultation with our Huntington or Woodbury office and find out for sure!