Treatment schedules with clear aligners

With traditional orthodontics, a patient usually presents with a misalignment of the teeth, and an orthodontic professional makes an assessment of how they think their treatment should  continue and talks this through with their patient, before agreeing on and fitting some type of dental apparatus. Usually this is a metal brace, but in very severe cases some form of headgear or bridge widener like a functional appliance is needed.

But suppliers of Clear Braces Direct London have turned this on their head by providing very accurate predictive models that can show how treatment will turn out. The very nature of creating clear aligners relies on a 3D model being captured of the patient’s mouth; this 3D model is used as the basis to create the treatment schedule, a set of paths that the teeth must travel along in order to be realigned. It is from this schedule that the aligners themselves are designed as this is done in an automated fashion. The inferred aligner models are sent to 3D printers to be manufactured, which gives a wonderful opportunity for a local dentist to be able to display the schedule in real time to their patients.

A picture says a thousand words

This video slideshow of the progression of the patient’s teeth from their current location to a finished state is extremely reassuring and something that seems to really help communication between dental practitioner and patient. It is also reassuring to the patient and often motivates them, increasing their commitment to treatment and therefore the chances of a successful outcome.

It seems to be greatly helped because as clear aligners are translucent, patients can see their treatment taking place every time they look in a mirror. Unlike the standard brace which obscures a lot of its progress, you can really see what you have been working towards when the aligner is fully removed each day.

When a patient sees change, even in the first two weeks of treatment and sees that the change is following the same predictions they were initially shown of how their treatment would progress, they are greatly reassured.

invisalign and toothbrush

Wearing clear aligners

It is very important that patients who use clear aligners are highly motivated, because they can remove the aligners at any time. Unlike a traditional brace which is fixed in the mouth for the entire length of the treatment, there is a habit among under motivated patients to simply stop using their aligners part way through treatment and therefore it never achieves full results. More often than not reversion will undo any progress that has been achieved with such an early cessation of treatment.

Being able to remove and reapply your own aligners at any time is one of the big pluses for most patients using them. It means that you’re not restricted to the same dietary choices that you may have to make with normal braces. For instance, there’s no reason why you can’t remove your aligners, enjoy popcorn and brush your teeth before returning them, rather than applying the intense cleaning routine needed with interdental brushes.

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