There are different names for clear braces such as Invisalign, 6 Month Smiles, ClearCorrect, ClearSmile, FastBraces, Quick Straight Teeth and Inman Aligners. In the past only children ever had orthodontic treatment and the main reason was that it was unsightly for adults to have a mouth full of metal wires, train tracks and brackets. With advances in cosmetic dentistry such as white fillings, veneers and tooth whitening, even then not all problems could be corrected except by braces. There are now tooth coloured wires, brackets and aligners. They are still visible but acceptable to most patients and treatment times are much faster. With the advent of clear braces, a lot of problems can be corrected in less than 6 months. One of the most important factors to consider when considering clear braces is what happens once treatment is complete because teeth can move back to their original positions. This is called orthodontic relapse but does not happen in all cases so as a precaution we make a set of orthodontic retainers. This is a thin plastic cover which fits over your teeth and is only worn at night time. As long as you wear this then your new smile will not relapse. Orthodontic retainers will need to be replaced every 2-3 years as they can wear out or even break. In reality most patients who have had orthodontic treatment do not wear their retainers and nothing happens but the risk of relapse is always there. What happens if your teeth do relapse? Once orthodontic relapse has occurred it is important to act quickly. If the relapse is mild then all that is needed is a short course of orthodontic treatment to push the teeth back to how they were. In cases where the tooth have moved considerably then it will be neccassary to have the whole treatment carried out from scratch again. Orthodontic treatment also carried other risks. One of these risks is called root resorption. Root resorption is when the root of the tooth starts to get eaten away and eventually the whole tooth can be lost which is a disaster. There are many causes of root resorption and one of these is when you are trying to make a tooth move into its new position too quickly. This is the main reason why orthodontic treatment takes time. Generally speaking, we get very very few complications from clear braces and the results are hugely impressive.
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European Journal of Orthodontics, Volume 35, Issue 6, 1 December 2013, Pages 851, https://doi.org/10.1093/ejo/cjt061
Ivisalign and Traditional Orthodontic Treatment Postretention Outcomes Compared Using the American Board of Orthodontics Objective Grading System