How Long Does Invisalign Take to Straighten Teeth?

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May 10, 2021
Today, over 2.5 million patients in the world have bettered their smile and dental health with Invisalign.

Easy to use and almost invisible, this clean liner system is a great alternative to traditional braces. But how long does Invisalign take, and is it worth the time?

If you've been considering treatment with Invisalign but have questions about the process, look no further!

Below, we'll break down how the Invisalign system works and how long it could take for you. So if you're ready to take the first steps towards a healthier smile, keep reading!

What Is Invisalign?

Invisalign is an alternative to traditional braces composed of clear liners. 

Custom-made for your teeth, these liners will gradually straighten your teeth without any of the metal brackets that normal braces require.

Your doctor will create a plan for your teeth based on your unique needs, and the liners will gradually change as your teeth do. 

Because they are less painful and restrictive, Invisalign liners have become a popular way to improve your teeth. But does that mean they take longer than traditional braces? 

How Long Does Invisalign Take?

This is one of the most common questions patients have, and the shortest answer is: It depends!

The average treatment time for Invisalign is 12-18 months, but this varies greatly from person to person. In comparison, the average braces treatment takes from 18-24 months. 

Like traditional wire braces, treatment length depends on you and your goals. There are many factors that can impact your personal Invisalign timeline, such as the severity of misalignment and how well you follow the program. 

Generally, the more severe the misalignment the longer treatment will take. In order to keep your teeth healthy and as pain-free as possible, Invisalign can only move teeth so far at a time. 

This means that the more a tooth has to move, the longer it will take to achieve the desired results. Age can also impact treatment, as the older the tooth the more difficult it is to move.

As we'll see shortly, using the liners correctly is one of the biggest influences on how long Invisalign takes. Unlike metal braces, patients can easily remove their Invisalign liners, and doing so can impact the course of treatment. 

For the best understanding of long treatment will take, you'll need to visit your dentist. Once they have examined your teeth, your dental provider can give you a good estimate of how long Invisalign may take for you. 

This estimate will be based on things such as your age, dental goals, and the severity of misalignent. Minor fixes can take as little as 6 months, while more severe issues can take up to 3 years to fix. 

How Can You Shorten The Invisalign Timeline?

When it comes to Invisalign, you can ensure that the process goes as smoothly as possible by taking a few key steps.

Like any medical treatment, it's important to follow all instructions and be aware of changes in your liners. Let's take a look at some of the things you can do to speed up the Invisalign process. 

Follow Treatment Guidelines

Be sure to always wear your liners for the recommended amount of time, which is 22 hours a day.

If you take a break from your liners you essentially halt the process. If the liners are left off long enough, your teeth can even return to their previous states. 

To keep your treatment moving along, always be sure to leave your liners on as instructed, and replace them as soon as possible when you do remove them. 

Depending on your treatment plan, you may also have some additional instructions from your dentist. If this is the case, make sure to follow these as closely as possible. 

Monitor Your Treatment

It's important that your liners fit as snugly onto your teeth as possible. If you notice that your current liners aren't fitting properly, make sure to see your dentist as soon as possible. 

Be on the lookout for air gaps or spaces where the liners are more visible than usual. Properly fitted liners should be almost invisible.

Waiting until your next routine visit could delay much-needed adjustments.

You should also contact your doctor right away if you are experiencing any discomfort that makes it difficult to wear your liners as you should. 

Never Miss an Appointment

One of the great perks of Invisalign is that treatment requires fewer dental office visits. While this is a nice benefit, it doesn't mean you should be lenient about your appointments. 

It's important that you go to all scheduled visits so that your dentists can inspect and modify your treatment. If you must miss an appointment, reschedule as soon as possible.

Skipping appointments can mean waiting longer to move to the next phase of treatment or missing important issues with your liners.

If you want to keep Invisialign's time to straighten teeth as short as possible, miss as few appointments as possible. 

Straighten Teeth Quicker With Invisalign

So, how long does Invisalign take? If you follow instructions and make all your doctor's appointments, treatment lasts on average 12-18 months. 

But this can change depending on your mouth and goals, so the best way to get an estimate is to work closely with your dentist. Follow their instructions, can be an active participant in your treatment. 

By being sure to keep your liners in and use them properly, you can help the process along. 

Ready to get one step closer to a healthy, happy smile? Reach out to our skilled experts today to find out if Invisalign is right for you!