Diamond Tier Invisalign Dentist Answers Top Questions from Reddit and Other Forums [+ FAQs]

By Dr. Tong Ker Wei Julius

Categories: Braces, Dental Care, Invisalign
Diamond Tier Invisalign Dentist Answers Top Questions from Reddit and Other Forums [+ FAQs]

Committing to Invisalign treatment is a huge decision. So, we’ve decided to answer some of the top questions that are frequently asked before, during and after treatment.

About Dr. Tong

All questions have been answered by Dr. Tong Ker Wei Julius from i.Dental.

Dr. Tong graduated from the University of Melbourne Dental School and began his practice at the Royal Dental Hospital of Melbourne. Thereafter, as an accredited Invisalign provider, he pursued his interests in orthodontics and focused on aligner therapy in Singapore.

1. My clinic closed down due to COVID-19. Is it okay to use my 2nd last tray for an extra week then switch to the last tray and use it as a retainer?

Sending hugs to everyone else who was about to be done đź’› from Invisalign

Dr. Tong’s answer:

Each aligner is meant to be worn for 7-14 days. But they’ve also been used for longer – sometimes up to a month when patients undergo MCC (mid-course correction) scans.

Although the aligners may warp slightly, they should still keep your teeth within limits.

 

2. If I use my last tray as a retainer, will my teeth start shifting?

My invisalign dentist has closed today (23rd March) due to covid-19… They reopen in June! from Invisalign

Dr. Tong’s answer:

In this case, you can reduce your daily wear time (e.g. about 12 hours per day). That way, your aligners can serve as a retainer and still be able to last longer as compared to full-time wear.

 

3. Will my tongue thrust mess up my teeth again after I complete Invisalign?

Has anyone gotten rid of a tongue thrust after Invisalign? from Invisalign

Dr. Tong’s answer:

Yes, any forces in the mouth will have an orthodontic effect on your teeth.

You can try changing the habit by practising tongue thrust correction exercises or if the exercises don’t work, you might then need to consult a speech therapy pathologist.

 

4. How long does it take for the lisp to go away?

Buyers remorse from Invisalign

Dr. Tong’s answer:

Lisp will usually go away within 1 week after you get your aligners. However, this is dependent on individuals as your tongue will adapt and adjust accordingly. Some patients are able to adjust within a few hours.

 

5. How long does Invisalign actually take as compared to what we’re being told by the dentist?

How long did your invisalign take compared to what you were told? from Invisalign

Dr. Tong’s answer:

For non-extraction cases, Invisalign treatment typically takes 12 – 18 months, minor cases can be completed as fast as 6 – 9 months time. For complex cases (e.g.extraction), it could be 24 months or longer. But every case is different and we will be able to advise the individual according to their case.

6. Is it normal to grind or clench my teeth when I wear Invisalign?

Anyone else notice grinding or clenching your teeth more with trays in?? from Invisalign

Dr. Tong’s answer:

Due to the thickness of the aligners, it’s normal for clenching habit to form. This habit would require conscious effort to reduce.

 

7. Why does my tray look cut off at the last tooth?

Anyone else’s trays look like this? Like its cut in half by the last tooth? Or does this mean my teeth have been scanned wrong? (Its only like this on one side of top and bottom trays and not the other) thanks! from Invisalign

Dr. Tong’s answer:

This is normal. Possible reasons for this may include

  • Unable to scan the last tooth properly
  • Partially erupted wisdom tooth
  • Wisdom tooth doesn’t need Invisalign treatment; ½ cover is meant to prevent over-eruption

 

8. I’m in the midst of my Invisalign journey but I’m happy with how my teeth looks now. Is it okay to end my treatment?

Has anyone decided NOT to get their refinements? from Invisalign

Dr. Tong’s answer:

As a dentist, we can only advise patients what improvements can still happen if they choose to proceed with the treatment. We always plan for an ideal finish. However, the ultimate decision still lies with the patient.

 

9. Is it normal for my teeth/bite to shift back when I stop using rubber bands after my treatment even when I’m wearing my retainer?

People with rubber bands: from Invisalign

Dr. Tong’s answer:

Sometimes after elastic wear, there may be some relapse to the bite. This is normal and shouldn’t affect your smile significantly. At times, active retainers may be necessary (i.e. retainers with prescribed features for elastic wear).

But if your teeth do shift, you may want to consult your dentist regarding the suitability of your retainers.

 

10. I have a chip in my Invisalign tray. What should I do?

Just got a chip on a tray for first time. Waiting on ortho to get back to me. Has this ever happened to you? If so, what were you told to do? from Invisalign

Dr. Tong’s answer:

Usually, this is due to a tear in the aligner or improper removal technique. Notify your doctor and depending on the extent of the tear and how many days the aligner has been worn, your doctor will advise you to skip to next set or order new replacements.

 

 

11. My aligner is designed such that there is a full last tooth, but my wisdom tooth is now Âľ out. Is there anything I can do without going to the dentist?

Day 5 – my gum is getting increasingly sliced open! from Invisalign

Dr. Tong’s answer:

Likely the gum in the region underwent inflammation and got swollen. When the gum is swollen, it feels as if the aligner is digging into it. You can start by finding out the cause of swelling and finding solutions to relieve it. 

If you’re unable to see your dentist, a temporary fix would be to cut the aligner where it’s digging in.

 

1. What are the pros and cons of Invisalign vs Smile Direct Club?

2. Are Invisalign competitors any good?

Dr. Tong’s answer:

Here’s a direct comparison of Invisalign VS direct-to-consumer (DTC) brands such as Smile Direct Club, Zenyum and WonderSmile.

InvisalignDirect-to-consumer brands
EffectivenessCan be used to treat comprehensive and complex casesCan only treat simple movements
TechnologyUses 3D computer simulation to plan teeth movements; attachments may be used to move teeth effectivelyUses 3D computer simulation to plan teeth movements; doesn’t use attachments
Dental visits and accountabilityEvery 2 months at your dental clinicProgress monitored via teledentistry
Price range$4,800 - $9,000 $2,000 - $3,000

 

Invisalign is more suitable for treating complex cases, whereas DTC brands may be better for disciplined patients who only require small movements.

Read more: In-Clinic Aligner Systems VS Direct-to-Consumer Aligner Systems

 

3. Does Invisalign work?

Dr. Tong’s answer:

Yes! Invisalign aligners work by applying a constant controlled force onto the tooth to exhibit a pre-planned movement. 

During your first visit to the clinic, your dentist will use the iTero Element Scanner to capture a 3D image of your teeth. Using the ClinCheck software, you’ll be able to visualise the shift of every tooth to achieve the end result. 

Each set of aligners will be worn between 7 – 14 days depending on the stage of the treatment, response and other factors.  There is even an accelerated option you can discuss with your doctors about. You should start seeing results in weeks. 

 

Dr. Tong’s answer:

The best Invisalign alternative is braces. 

There are currently 4 main types of braces – traditional metal and ceramic, and self-ligating metal and ceramic. 

In general, braces is the more affordable option that’s also able to treat complex cases. 

Each system have their unique strengths and weaknesses. Sometimes we will combine different systems to harness the strength of each system if your case requires. This is a hybrid technique.

Read more: Braces VS Invisalign

 

5. Can you get Invisalign for only the bottom teeth?

Dr. Tong’s answer:

It’s possible in selected cases, see your dentist to see if you are suitable – we will need to assess treatment goals and objectives. 

There should also be sufficient overjet etc. – best to let your doctor assess suitability and to explain all the comprises to you before making a decision.

Note that this may not reduce the cost of your Invisalign by 50%. Cost of single-arch treatment is approximate 70% of dual arch treatment. 

 

6. Does Invisalign help with jaw misalignment / asymmetrical jawline?

Dr. Tong’s answer:

It depends on the type of misalignment. Invisalign would help with a functional shift to correct problems such as a crossbite.

However, if it’s a skeletal problem and the patient is already skeletally mature, it can only be fixed by orthognathic surgery.

 

7. Can braces or Invisalign make your teeth fall out?

Dr. Tong’s answer:

It’s possible if there’s uncontrolled gum disease, as orthodontic treatment may exacerbate bone loss and the rate of loss.

Uncontrolled gum disease should therefore be treated and brought under control before embarking on orthodontic treatment.

 

8. What disadvantages does Invisalign pose?

Dr. Tong’s answer:

In cases of poor compliance, you might get a failed treatment.

  • You have to be very disciplined

You’re required to wear your Invisalign aligners for 20 – 22 hours a day. Thus, in the case of poor compliance, it may lead to failed treatment. 

  • Invisalign may not be suitable for frequent snackers

After eating and drinking, you have to clean your teeth before wearing your aligners. If you enjoy a cup of coffee and snack multiple times a day, this may disrupt your routine. 

However, it can also be seen as a perk to encourage you to adopt a healthier diet.

 

9. Why isn’t Invisalign much cheaper today now that their patents have expired?

Dr. Tong’s answer:

According to price trends, the prices for Invisalign over the past 10 years have been decreasing.

FAQs

Dr. Tong’s answer:

Here are some ways you can clean your trays and retainer:

  • Retainer cleaner tablets: Polident, Brite
  • Brush your retainer with soap and water
  • Ultrasonic machine

You’re advised to clean them twice daily, and after you eat if you eat with your aligners on.

Dr. Tong’s answer:

It’s on a case-by-case basis, usually determined by your dental problem. For example, anterior open bite cases may be treated by Invisalign faster but this highly depends on compliance.

In general, Invisalign and braces should have around the same treatment period.

Dr. Tong’s answer:

It depends on your preferences and dental problem. Generally, traditional metal braces is more effective for rectifying serious malocclusions.

Here’s a general comparison of the two:

Traditional metal Traditional ceramic Self-ligating metal Self-ligating ceramic Invisalign
Appearance Very noticeable; choice of coloured rubber bands Less noticeable than metal braces, prone to staining Noticeable Less noticeable than metal braces, prone to staining Virtually invisible; least noticeable
Pain level Most pain Less pain
Hygiene Less hygienic Less hygienic More hygienic More hygienic Most hygienic
Treatment period 12 – 24 months 12 – 24 months Shorter time than traditional braces Shorter time than traditional braces 15 – 18 months
Price range $3,900 – $4,400 $4,600 – $5,200 $5,100 – $5,700 $5,800 – $6,500 $4,800 – $9,000

Do note that the information only serves as a gauge and may vary from individual to individual.

 

Dr. Tong’s answer:

Multilayered polymers.

Invisalign clear aligners are made of a patented flexible plastic called SmartTrack®, to ensure maximum comfort. These FDA-approved aligners don’t contain any BPA, BPS, latex, or gluten.

 

 

Dr. Tong’s answer:

Each set of retainers usually lasts for up to 18 months.

Dr. Tong’s answer:

Invisalign may have difficulty in treating:

  • severely tipped teeth,
  • impacted teeth
  • severely rotated teeth,

However, these issues can be overcome with auxiliaries/buttons.

Auxiliaries can be in the form of buttons or small section of braces or any other add on necessary depending on the movement needed.

Dr. Tong’s answer:

If there’s a snug fit, you are on track. There should be no space seen between the tooth and aligner. If there’s any space, it’s likely that you’re off tracking.

Get your questions answered by i.Dental Invisalign Dedicated Clinic

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We’ll be adding in more questions as we get more enquiries. So, check back another day to see if we’ve answered your question(s)!

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