How Long Does Invisalign Take?
Invisalign is a fantastic option to straighten your teeth if you want something other than traditional braces. It is removable, comfortable, and almost invisible, while still being very effective. So how long does Invisalign take? While some people who use Invisalign may be finished with their treatments in 6 months, most patients average anywhere from 12 to 18 months or longer, depending on their specific treatment goals.
Treatment times can vary based on several factors, including:
- Your age
- The type of spacing or crowding issues you have
- How well you follow the treatment plan
Which Invisalign Is Right for Me?
Each person’s mouth is as unique as their fingerprints. That’s why Invisalign offers several treatment levels designed to address specific needs at different stages of a patient’s life.
Invisalign First treatment is designed for “little smiles.” Also known as Phase 1 treatment, Invisalign First is perfect for children ages 6 to 10 who are just starting orthodontic treatment.
Phase 1 treatment makes room for existing teeth and for incoming permanent teeth, all while your child’s jaws are still developing. Invisalign First aligners are designed for:
- Treating a broad range of teeth straightening issues in growing children, including crowding and spacing
- Easy removal for brushing and flossing
- Comfort – no brackets or wires to irritate young mouths
- Helping with oral habits like thumb sucking or tongue thrusting
Invisalign Express straightens your teeth in a shorter time with fewer sets of aligners. It’s designed to treat mild cases of dental misalignment, such as mild spacing or crowding issues. Because it’s designed to treat the mildest cases, Invisalign Express uses 10 sets of aligners or less, and treatment generally takes about 6 months.
Invisalign Lite is also a shorter treatment program, designed to treat mild to moderate crowding, spacing, and misalignment issues with only 14 trays. Patients generally complete treatment in 6 to 12 months. Invisalign Lite is also great for taking care of the minor teeth shifts that can happen if patients stop wearing their retainer as directed.
Originally created to address simple orthodontic issues, Invisalign Teen has evolved to provide comfortable treatment of mild, moderate, and complex cases and are designed specifically for teenage mouths.
Invisalign Teen aligners include special features like eruption tabs that provide space for any incoming adult teeth, as well as a blue indicator dot that keeps track of how many hours the aligners were worn that day. The Invisalign Teen program also provides several free replacement aligners, since some teens are more likely to lose or damage their trays.
Comprehensive Invisalign treatment may take anywhere from 12 to 24 months or longer and works well for about 90 percent of orthodontic cases. However, if you have a severe misalignment issue or are unable to wear the clear aligners as directed for 20-22 hours per day, Invisalign treatment may not be right for you.
How Long Invisalign Takes Also Depends on the Patient
Several factors are completely in the patient’s control and can affect how long Invisalign will take. Here is what you can do to finish treatment as quickly and effectively as possible:
- Keep up with regularly scheduled dentist and orthodontist appointments.
- Wear your aligners for 20-22 hours per day, removing them only for eating, drinking, or short periods of time when absolutely necessary.
- Switch trays on schedule.
- Call your orthodontist immediately if you lose or break your aligners.
- Once you finish your treatment, wear your retainer as recommended to keep your smile straight and healthy!
When it comes to choosing which Invisalign you need, it’s best to listen to the experts, even if they might recommend a treatment longer than you were hoping for. Our orthodontists at Fravel Brewer Orthodontics in Ocoee can help determine the right Invisalign for your smile and give you a good idea of how long your treatment will take.
Fravel and Brewer Orthodontics has been helping patients achieve beautiful smiles as the preferred orthodontist in Winter Garden, Ocoee, and West Orange County, Florida for almost 30 years. Treatment options for kids and adults include Invisalign, Invisalign Teen, ceramic braces, and silver braces. Call us at (407) 656-0001 to schedule a free consultation today!