Invisalign has become so popular over the years because this removable clear aligner orthodontic treatment offers patients the ability to straighten their teeth without uncomfortable and noticeable metal wires and brackets.
However, what many patients don’t realize is that it’s common to need Invisalign attachments to help your aligners do their job properly. So, how do they work and how will this affect your smile and lifestyle? Read on in this blog from Dental 1 to learn more about Invisalign attachments.
What Are Invisalign Attachments?
Invisalign attachments are tooth-colored buttons made of composite resin which are bonded to your teeth. They anchor your aligners and help them perform more complex tooth movements that the aligners couldn’t perform on their own.
The attachments are made of the same materials used in dental bonding. These temporary buttons will come in various shapes and sizes and will only be placed on certain teeth if you need them at all.
Because the buttons help certain teeth move in a certain way because the aligners aren’t able to move them on their own, some teeth will need attachments that are smaller in size and are in the shape of a triangle while others may need a larger button that is in the shape of a square. The shapes are what encourage the tooth's direction and movement.
Are They Noticeable?
The buttons are tooth-colored and are matched to the shade of your natural teeth using a shade guide. However, because the buttons protrude from your teeth slightly, they may be visible when you remove your aligners.
The good news, however, is that you need to wear your aligners for 22 hours per day anyway and should only remove them to eat or clean your teeth. When you are wearing your aligners, the attachments will not be noticeable, so others are unlikely to see your attachments.
Even if they do, this is only temporary and they will be buffed off at the end of treatment which is only 12 to 18 months on average. By regularly brushing and flossing your teeth, you will prevent stains and food particle buildup around the buttons which will prevent them from becoming more noticeable.
Will I Need Attachments?
If you have very minor orthodontic problems that are being corrected with Invisalign such as slightly crooked teeth or very small gaps, then you may not need any attachments. However, moderate to severe malocclusions will likely require attachment to help seat your aligners and perform these tooth movements.
If you have a misaligned bite, your attachments can be paired with elastics to shift your jaws forward or backward. If you have overcrowded or crooked teeth that need to be rotated, attachments will help place more force on a certain tooth to encourage this rotation.
The only way to know if you will need attachments is to come in for a consultation. Since we use digital mapping to plan your treatment, we can show you your entire orthodontic treatment on digital software so you can see how your teeth will move and what methods will be used to achieve those movements.
Schedule Your Invisalign Consultation In Milton
Even though Invisalign attachments may be slightly noticeable when you remove your aligners, this is a small price to pay for a straighter, more aesthetic smile in the long run. The attachments are only temporary but the smile you achieve by undergoing Invisalign treatment is for life. If you’re interested in Invisalign, contact us at Dental 1 today to schedule a consultation with Dr. Pham in Milton.