February 2013

Treatment Sucess with Invisalign

Author: Jeffrey C. Bauer

Over the last couple of years, I have had the opportunity to treat patients in need of minor orthodontic treatment with Invisalign technology. Most adult patients believe that orthodontic treatment is used only to improve one’s smile or for esthetic concerns. While Invisalign and traditional “braces” have the ability to correct crooked teeth and improve a patient’s smile, there are many other benefits of orthodontic treatment that get overlooked. Some of these benefits are:

-Correction of a poor bite
-Improvement of oral hygiene
-Reduction of periodontal disease
-Reduction of expensive dental treatment.

The first overlooked benefit is the correction of a poor bite (malocclusion). As a practicing dentist, I often see patients with minor tooth movement and wear related to shifting teeth after orthodontic treatment. This is referred to as “orthodontic relapse.” These patients are usually between 30-50 years old and first only notice a “shifting” lower or upper tooth and are unhappy with the resulting esthetic appearance of the “crooked” tooth.

As the practicing dentist, I see this esthetic concern, but I also see some of the resulting consequences that patients are not aware of. The tooth or teeth that are out of alignment often are worn and are wearing other teeth in the mouth and are causing the other teeth nearby to move as well. As this continues to happen over time, the teeth not only can become a major esthetic concern, but cause the breakdown of the entire bite. If we can get these teeth back in the proper place with minor orthodontic treatment or Invisalign, patients can avoid costly and painful dental treatment in the future.

Once we get a patient’s teeth back in alignment with Invisalign, another benefit is that the teeth are easier to clean. This results in healthier gums and a healthier body in general. Teeth that are overlapped and crowded together often result in poor oral hygiene and dental plaque which harbor the germs that cause periodontal disease. These germs may also be linked to other health problems found in the human body, including heart disease. By correcting these minor problems early with simple and painless orthodontic treatment, all these negative consequences may be avoided. Sometimes this treatment only requires a couple months of Invisalign treatment.

Finally, Invisalign treatment may be used to significantly lower the cost and amount of dental work needed when treating a patient with complex dental procedures. Prior to doing crowns or veneers, I have treated patients with Invisalign first. This has resulted in much lower dental bills for the patients and less chair time doing more complex treatment. It has been gratifying for me as well as the patient to use Invisalign as a tool when treating complex difficult dental cases. With the use of Invisalign, it is easier to get a better esthetic result with these cases as well.

If you have noticed your teeth “shifting” over the last few years or believe your teeth could be treated with Invisalign, please give our office a call. If you mention this article, we are offering free Invisalign consults for a limited time. We would love to give you our best advice to help improve your smile and improve your overall health as well through Invisalign treatment.

Bauer Dental Associates is located at 19 Unit 201 Promenade St., Bluffton. For more information, call (843) 757-2222 or visit online at bauerdental.net.

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