Clear Aligners: Your Custom Fit Journey

When you see someone wearing clear aligners, have you ever wondered what the process looks like to get them to look so natural? Today, Icon Orthodontics will answer this question: What is the process for getting fitted for custom aligners?

What Are They?

Clear aligners are a discrete alternative to our Damon metal braces, used to correct misalignment in the teeth of our teenage and adult patients. 

We offer multiple options for clear aligners in our office:

  • Invisalign
  • Spark
  • U-Lab
  • Our in-house 3D printed option is the most affordable.

What Is the Process of Getting Fitted for Custom Clear Aligners?

How They’re Made

Treatments like Invisalign all go through a similar fitting and production process. The main distinction between these and do-it-yourself at-home kits is that we monitor progress as professionals and are able to achieve incredible precision. Here’s how it works:

  1. Consultation: Dr. Sun or Dr. Sarpotdar will meet you in an initial consultation to initiate your chosen form of treatment. We’ll evaluate your teeth, discuss your goals for treatment, and determine if this is the best option to pursue. 
  2. Digital Scanning or Impressions: Instead of using a traditional method like putty (which can get a bit messy), we use digital scanning technology to create precise 3D models of your teeth and gums, which means we’re able to address all of the details of your individual dental anatomy.
  3. Treatment Planning: Using specialized software, our doctors will plan your treatment by digitally moving your teeth into the desired positions. This allows for a virtual blueprint for the creation of your custom aligners.
  4. Fabrication: Once the plan is finalized, the digital models of your teeth are used to fabricate a series of custom clear aligners. They’re produced using advanced computer-aided design and manufacturing (CAD/CAM) technology. Aligners are usually made from lightweight plastic, which is highly durable and BPA-free.
  5. Aligner Trimming: After they’re fabricated, they are trimmed to ensure smooth edges and a comfortable fit. This step helps to avoid irritation to your gums and oral tissues during wear. 
  6. Quality Control: If they’re coming from a lab, they’ll undergo thorough quality checks to ensure accuracy and consistency. This includes verifying that the fit and shape of each aligner match the digital plan set in place.
  7. Fitting: You’ll return to our office when they’re done to receive your first set of aligners. We can check that they fit properly and provide additional details on how to best wear and care for them.
  8. Treatment Progression: Throughout the treatment, you will wear each set of aligners for about one to two weeks, gradually moving your teeth closer to their desired positions. Regular appointments with us allow us to make any adjustments as needed along the way.

What Is the Process of Getting Fitted for Custom Clear Aligners?

The Benefits

If you’re on the fence about clear aligners, we wanted to include some information that might guide you in the right direction. There are tons of benefits of this method:

  • Discreet Appearance: When worn, aligners are usually almost undetectable. This can be a huge benefit for people who have always wanted orthodontic treatment but have avoided braces.
  • Comfortable: Part of the detailed process is making sure you don’t have to deal with too much discomfort. Every person will adjust a little bit at first since there’s something new in your mouth! However discomfort is usually short-lived, and adjustment is easy.
  • Removable: This is the other key advantage. While you still need to wear your aligners for 20-22 hours a day, you can and should remove them for eating, drinking, brushing, and flossing, which can allow for better oral hygiene maintenance than traditional braces. 
  • Predictable Results: Being able to physically show you what your intended results will look like is a wonderful tool of modern dental technology. Our 3D scans are especially comprehensive with these appliances, as you don’t have wires and brackets obstructing your results. There is a final set of course, but the progress and reveal is more gradual and tangible. 
  • Versatility: Clear aligners like Invisalign are excellent options for treating a wide variety of orthodontic issues. This can include crowded teeth, overbite, underbite, crossbite, and open bite, as well as gaps between teeth. Regardless of if your concerns are mild or a bit more complex, Dr. Paxon will be able to effectively explain why this could be the best choice for you to make.

What Is the Process of Getting Fitted for Custom Clear Aligners?

A Clear Road to Success!

Hopefully, this blog has been able to answer some of the most common questions you might have about clear aligner treatment and how the aligners themselves come into being! Our office is full of professionals who will walk alongside you in your treatment plan and make sure your results are picture-perfect. You can contact our Surprise office at (623) 257-7461 or our Glendale office at (602) 362-9091!