There is no minimum age for achieving a beautiful and healthy smile, and at Stellar Smiles Ortho, we are proud to serve patients of all ages with high-quality care. Invisalign may be the perfect appliance for your child if they need a corrective treatment that works for their day-to-day activities without the restrictions of braces. While it is sometimes assumed that Invisalign is for teenage or adult patients, our child patients often have the highest level of success in clear aligners and develop beautiful smiles that will last a lifetime.
What Is Invisalign?
Invisalign is a series of clear aligners that are made out of a state-of-the-art thermoplastic that has been engineered for patient comfort. This treatment has become wildly popular with patients of all ages because it is virtually invisible and consistently creates beautiful results.
To begin treatment, we take a 3D scan of your child’s mouth and craft a digital model using the iTero Scanner. This 3D scan allows us to show you what your smile will look like after Invisalign. We then use this digital model to print the first set of clear aligners that will fit snugly over your child’s teeth and provide consistent pressure to gradually shift their teeth into place. Every two weeks, you will receive a new set of aligners that have been slightly adjusted to further shift their teeth closer to the desired results. This cycle will continue until we have perfected your child’s smile with improved aesthetics and oral health.
How Is Invisalign for Kids Different from Invisalign for Adults?
Invisalign for kids is very similar to Invisalign for adults in the way that your child will receive a new set of clear aligners every two weeks that fit perfectly to their mouth. However, because a growing mouth is different from a fully formed mouth, the aligners take into account that your child’s mouth will be growing and changing throughout treatment.
We understand that corrective treatment is an investment into a happier and healthier smile for your child, and this is why we want to help you protect this investment, so they gain the most from their time in aligners. Invisalign for kids features compliance indicators located near the back of the aligners that will help you and our team discern how often your child wears their appliance. It’s essential that they keep their aligners in for at least 20-22 hours a day. Over the course of the two-week period for each set of aligners, the compliance indicator should begin to fade as your child wears their aligners consistently. There’s a common misconception that children may have a more difficult time wearing aligners than adults because they have to leave their aligners in and remember to put them back in if they take them out. In reality, children often have an easier time adjusting to wearing their aligners consistently because younger patients are more adaptable to change.
What Are the Benefits of Invisalign for Children?
There are countless benefits for children who wear Invisalign, including the improved health and overall appearance of their smile. While you may know that corrective treatment makes smiles more attractive, there is actually a health benefit to straighten teeth. Overcrowded teeth, misaligned jaws, and other orthodontic issues can lead to chewing pain, tooth decay, difficulty speaking, and more. By correcting the placement of the mouth and jaw, your child can benefit from a fully functioning smile.
Invisalign has become a popular treatment for children because of how flexible and easy the appliance is for our younger patients. They can easily remove their aligners to enjoy their favorite snacks without having to worry about breaking their appliance and having to attend an emergency appointment. Invisalign also makes it easier for children to maintain their oral health because they can take their aligners out before brushing and flossing their teeth. This way, they don’t have to learn how to brush in between brackets and wires and risk missing food debris or plaque buildup.
How Should My Child Care for Their Invisalign Aligners?
We know it can be challenging to get a child to commit to a daily oral hygiene routine, and Invisalign makes it easy for children to take care of their aligners without adding too many steps to their routine. All they need to do is take a toothbrush and use warm water to scrub away any harmful bacteria or food debris from their aligners.
Can My Child Still Participate in Sports?
Yes! One of the cool aspects of Invisalign is that it acts as a sort of mouthguard so it can protect your child’s teeth in a game while shifting them into place for their dream smile. If they feel more comfortable playing without their Invisalign, they can easily remove the aligners during a game or practice, as long as they remember to put them back in when they are finished.