Just because you weren't born with straight teeth doesn't mean you’re stuck with Nature's handout. Adolescents and adults can receive orthodontic treatment from Dr. Arman Torbati, who serves the Los Angeles and Century City areas. A graduate of Harvard and USC, Dr. Torbati is a diplomate of the American Board of Prosthodontics. He is also an associate professor at USC. Dr. Torbati offers the Invisalign system for orthodontic treatment.
Do I Really Need Straight Teeth?
Aesthetics aside, having straight teeth is a matter of optimum dental health. When teeth are jammed together or crooked, they are much harder to get and keep clean. For example, dental floss may not slide between the teeth or may fray and break. Uneven wear is characteristic of crooked teeth, which may also cause bite problems. Headaches and jaw pain may also coexist with crooked teeth because of problems with bite alignment. All of these are reasons to have orthodontic treatment. The Invisalign system offers some significant advantages over conventional orthodontic treatment.
What is Invisalign?
The Invisalign system is radically different from the metal or ceramic brackets and wires of conventional braces. First, Invisalign aligners are removable, unlike brackets that are cemented to your teeth. Each plastic aligner is custom designed to fit over your teeth. You wear one aligner for a few weeks and then switch to the next in the series. The aligners gradually move your teeth into position. Second, Invisalign treatment is planned using a computer process that also allows the orthodontist to design and custom fit each aligner. A computer-generated 3-D pattern is made from molds placed on your teeth for perfect fit.
What Are the Invisalign Advantages?
You can take Invisalign aligners out to eat (so no dietary restrictions as you'll have with conventional braces) or for oral care. Conventional braces can make oral hygiene more difficult, but with Invisalign you brush and floss as you normally would. The aligner can also be removed for a special event like graduation or a wedding. The aligner is made of clear plastic and most people won't even realize you're wearing it. You’ll generally need fewer appointments, as you won't need to go in for adjustments as you would for conventional braces.
What's the Treatment Like?
As with any orthodontic treatment, the first step is a thorough assessment so the orthodontist can develop a treatment plan. Next, the orthodontist will make molds of your teeth and use these and X-rays to create computer-generated aligners for a custom fit. You'll wear each set of aligners for two to three weeks, then switch to a new set. The aligner must be worn at least 22 hours each day. You'll also need periodic check-ups to ensure the treatment is progressing as planned. At the completion of treatment – usually one to three years – you'll need to wear a retainer to ensure your teeth stay in their new position.
If you want straighter teeth, it's within your grasp. Please contact us to schedule a consultation with Dr. Torbati. He can explain your options for orthodontic treatment.