January 15, 2021
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Invisible braces work wonders

By: George Malkemus
September 20, 2019

Invisible braces are wonderful option of orthodontics.  Amazing advances in computer technology have allowed the development of teeth straightening without metal bands, wires and brackets.  If you have ever wanted to easily and comfortably improve your smile, now is the time to ask your dentist about invisible braces.  Not every patient is a candidate; sometimes, traditional braces are necessary.  But this computer technology is effective in many tooth-straightening cases.   

What are invisible braces?

The technology uses a series of computer generated, clear, removable aligners to gradually straighten teeth, without metal brackets or wires. 

How does invisible technology work?

3-D computer imaging technology depicts the complete treatment plan from the initial misaligned teeth position to the final desired position from which a series of custom-made, clear aligners are produced. The doctor will use the series of aligners over the course of treatment to correct the positioning of a patient’s teeth. Aligners move teeth through the appropriate placement of light, controlled force on the teeth.  Each aligner moves teeth incrementally, is worn for about two weeks and then replaced by the next in the series until the final position is achieved. 

What are the primary benefits of invisible braces?

 * Aligners are clear. You can straighten your teeth without anyone knowing.

 * Aligners are removable. Unlike braces, you can eat and drink what you want during treatment. You can also brush and floss normally to maintain good oral hygiene.

 * Aligners are comfortable. There are no metal brackets or wires to cause mouth irritation.

 * 3-D computer imaging technology allows you to view your own virtual treatment plan before you start—so you can see how your straight teeth will look when your treatment is complete.

What do aligners look like?

Aligners are made of clear, strong medical grade plastic that is virtually invisible when worn.  Aligners look similar to tooth-whitening trays but are custom-made for a better fit to move teeth. 

How can braces improve the health of your gums?

Teeth that are crowded or too widely spaced can create unhealthy conditions, including swollen gums, redness, bleeding, and gum pocketing, all of which are signs of periodontal disease.  Clinical studies have shown that gum health may improve with orthodontic treatment.  Properly aligned teeth can help gums “fit” tighter around each tooth, as well as make cleaning the teeth easier and more effective.  

Why invisible braces easier to clean than traditional braces?

Aligners should be removed to both eat and clean your teeth.  Unlike traditional braces, you can brush and floss normally.  There are no metal bands or wires, like traditions braces, to trap food and plaque. Maintaining a good oral hygiene program will also reduce chances of plaque buildup, tooth decay and periodontal disease.

How can orthodontics improve chewing and speech?

For some people, incorrectly positioned teeth and jaws can exacerbate speech difficulties and chewing problems. Correcting your bite by straightening your teeth can help improve both.

Properly aligned teeth can lower the risk of trauma and abnormal wear by reducing the stress on supporting bone and jaw joints.

What is the process for invisible braces?

1. Photos and impressions of your teeth are taken. 

2. A CT scan (Computed Tomography or CAT scan), is made from your dental impressions. The CT scan produces an extremely accurate, 3-dimensional digital model of your teeth.

3. CAD (Computer Aided Design) software is then used to simulate the movement of your teeth during treatment.

4. Your orthodontist reviews, modifies and approves the treatment plan before the aligners are created.

5. Advanced stereolithography (SLA) technology builds precise molds of your teeth at each stage of your treatment.

6. Individualized, custom-created clear aligners are made from these models and sent to your doctor’s office.

7. You’ll wear each aligner for approximately two weeks. Your doctor will monitor your progress until you have a wonderful smile.

8.  Aligners are worn 24 hours a day [except for eating, brushing or flossing] for 6 to 18 months, depending on the difficultly of your case.

9.  When the treatment is finished, a retainer is worn to keep the teeth in their new straight position.

3-D computer imaging technology allows comfortable tooth straightening that was only a futuristic dream a few years ago. State-of-the-art advances in dental science and technology are amazing.  The 21st Century computer age is definitely upon us. 


Enjoy Life and Keep Smiling!


George Malkemus has a Family and Cosmetic Dental Practice in Rohnert Park at 2 Padre Parkway, Suite 200. Call 585-8595, or email info@  Visit Dr. Malkemus’ Web site at