There are several orthodontic devices in the market that are used to correct teeth and move them into the correct position. Besides orthodontic braces which uses brackets connected by wires to align the teeth, invisible aligners are also available in the market to guide the teeth into the appropriate position. Invisible aligners are a series of well-fitting custom-made retainers that cover the teeth. The most notable brand for invisible aligners is Invisalign. However, other brands of aligners exist in the market including Clear Correct, Inman Aligner and Smart Moves.
Invisible aligners are a better fit for adult and teenagers as compared to children. This is because such aligners are custom made for a tight fit and treating children's teeth is more complicated. For young children, their mouths are growing and developing and these dynamic changes may cause treatment with invisible aligners to be less than optimal.
Treatment with invisible aligners are typically used for patients with mild or moderately crowded teeth or minor spacing issues. For complex orthodontic conditions where patients suffer from severe crowding or spacing problems along with severe underbites, overbites and crossbites, other forms of orthodontic treatment may be more appropriate.
Once an orthodontist determines the treatment plan for invisible aligners, the orthodontist will proceed to custom make a set of invisible aligners to treat the patient. However, over the duration of the treatment, the set of invisible aligners would be replaced with a succession of other invisible aligners of different fit to progressively move the teeth into the correct position over the length of the treatment. Each set of invisible aligners would make slight adjustments to the teeth such that the cumulative effect is a set of straight teeth at the end of the treatment.
Invisible aligners are made from clear plastic or acrylic material and have a good fit with the teeth. They can be removed for eating, brushing and flossing.